Let's talk Accessibility

The topic of accessibility has come up recently in discord.

Without going into to much depth, my wife has a couple of disabilities that impact her ability to easily access ttrpgs. Most notably generalised pain and fatigue which makes sitting at a table for long periods challenging and a macular dystrophy which makes reach books not possible.

I am interested if there are other with similar struggles in the community that have found work around or tools that are useful and also what sorts of tools/resources/supports might be useful?

Much of the advice I’ve read falls into the “have another player help them, read for them, roll for them”, which I understand can be done but it’s not particularly empowering and I’d love to find or develop more resources to give everyone their own agency at the table.

I am very interested in lowering the bar of entry for ttrpgs, we have found them to be such a good outlet and escape, and I would love to be able to help others for are finding the barrier to entry to be to high.

Hopefully that’s enough to start a bit of discussion!!

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I don’t have either of the same conditions as your wife, but I do struggle with sitting for prolonged periods. This is made worse when the seating is not comfortable for me. It’s also worse when there are other stressors on me. For me, the two biggest accommodations that help me are:

  1. Playing online, from the comfort of my own home where I have a lot more liberty to make the environment as I like and need. This also reduces a lot of the other stressors I have. Though there are other aspects of playing online which turn out to be stressors for others, so your results might vary specifically on additional stressors for playing online.
  2. Shorter sessions and more frequent breaks. Generally speaking I like to play for no more than an hour ish then take at least a 5 minute break. Repeat two or three times. Total session play is usually between 2.5 and 3 hours. Sometimes it can go over a little but usually not much.

For me, these two things greatly help me as far as sitting for prolonged periods. If you aren’t playing with video, or even if you are, you can also play from lying down (or some other position). I have definitely played while lying on the floor or my bed for voice only games.

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I also did a little research and looking up macular dystrophy. I would imagine that many of the same accommodations that work for other low vision or blind folks would work. I personally don’t know what any of these are, but I do know they exist.
I found a “Accessibility in Gaming Resource Guide”, which seems pretty good. Well, many of the resources I see on that guide that I know are good, so I can hope for the other ones I don’t know.

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As soon as my throat clears up (Winter!) I will endeavor to do a full read through of my game in both audio and video form. Hopefully that (and the forthcoming epub) can help with stuff like this.

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Thank you so much for that! I’ve not seen that resource before, definitely have some reading to do!

Really appreciate your thoughts on playing online games too! Definitely something to explore there.

Really helpful!

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I don’t know how you keep up with all of this, but you’re an absolute legend! Thanks heaps!