Last winter, I was faced with a problem: I had a broken wrist and could not play games with two hands. At first I was at a loss for what to do, but after a bit of thought I came up with some solutions to playing games while injured. These games are also good for anyone who has a permanent injury or disability, as they are easy to play with one hand.
Turn-based Games: My solution when I was injured was to play Final Fantasy X with one hand, which worked well, as there is no urgency or timing involved in most of the game. The fact that it is a darn good game obviously helped. The Best Strategy Games Ever (the Civilization series of course) are also a great solution. They require no urgency and do not require a keyboard to play. Turn-based games are still beneficial if the player isn’t injured, as the free hand can always be used to hold your snack of choice.
Most PC strategy games: While the world’s best Starcraft players use a ridiculous amount of hotkeys on their keyboards while playing, the casual player doesn’t need to. I used to play a lot of real-time strategy games before I got my PS3 and I never used anything more then my mouse. While I never personally tried it, I am sure that playing this game when you only have one hand available (assuming it is your dominant hand) would work very well. I would definitely recommend Warcraft 3, my personal favorite real-time strategy game.
I dealt with my injury by playing any games I could, but there are other ways to deal with it. Someone could just stop playing games all together, as they might believe that the only way a game should be experienced is the optimal way.
With the upcoming release of Microsoft’s Project Natal, I can imagine games becoming easier to play for those with injuries, as Natal eliminates the need of a controller that contorts player’s hands in ways that are not possible with a cast, for example.
New technologies like Natal could be revolutionary for people who before could not play any games for the rest of their lives due to a permanent injury. It is becoming easier for someone who is permanently injured to have the experiences that all gamers can have. This is just one of the ways that our industry is becoming more open and welcoming to everyone, not just the hardcore.
Bitmob community, I ask you this: How do you deal with gaming while injured? Have you ever experienced this?
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