By some estimates, as many as 2.6 billion people take part in digital gaming, a significant fraction of the global population. There is much ongoing study by games makers and researchers into why and how people play: for fun, for the challenge, to relax, to engage with friends, and so on.
And yet one group of people are conspicuous by their absence in this research: people with disabilities. There is growing anecdotal evidence that many disabled people enjoy gaming and are increasingly involved in it. But little is known about who these people are, what games they play, and what challenges they face. And that is a significant barrier to improving access for the disabled.
The team surveyed 230 volunteers identified through the AbleGamers Charity. Of these, 156 were male, 52 female, and 16 non-binary (six preferred not to say).
All this provides a foundation for future research that should reveal in more detail what kind of assistive technologies are most useful and how they can best be improved. But more work is clearly needed, not least because this survey suffers from some weaknesses.
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