The goal of the studio was to create a video game for a child with special needs that would be both skill building and fun to play. The first step was to learn about developing video games and to meet with the child for whom the game would benefit. After a series of skill building exercises, students from the studio visited Boston English High School to meet with high schoolers who have disabilities. The student of interest in this example is a girl named Unique. She is non-verbal but does not let that stop her in any way. Her interests, likes and dislikes, are those that appeal to typical teenagers. While speaking with a helper who accompanies her while on campus, it became evident that she could benefit from a game to keep her engaged independently. Her passion for fruit and love for clapping ultimately became the inspiration of the "Collect The Fruit Game".
To play the “Collect The Fruit Game,” the player uses two model hands to clap each time they see fruit falling into a basket on the screen. If the player sees a fruit that they do not like, they can simply clap the hands and the fruit will disappear from the screen. In this case, Unique would clap when she sees a grape, as she does not enjoy this fruit. There is a sensor in the set of hands used for clapping, and when pressed, sends a signal to the screen allowing the fruit to move to the side away from a basket which catches the falling fruit. If a grape is seen on the screen and a clap is received from the sensor, the fruit will not fall into the collection basket, and the player receives points. The “Collect The Fruit Game” allows the player to be rewarded for their success while developing skills. The game is easy to use, and fun to play.
Soccer John is a soccer video game was designed to provide an enjoyable experience for those who lack fine motors skills, using an inverted pedal and keyboard keys to mimic the action of kicking and aiming.
The video game industry is lacking video games and controllers that are designed for people who don't have fine motor skills. This restricts their ability to play games as there are limited options in the market. To help address this issue, and to help a specific individual, Soccer John was created.
The game Soccer John is specifically designed for a student from Boston English High School. John is full of life, openminded, kind, and enthusiastic John is often forgetful with short-term ideas, and he had a hard time walking without his walker. John was very vocal and expressed his interest in Harry Potter, soccer, the cold, Christmas, and X-Box. Based on these interests, we came up with the idea of having a soccer shooting game. The game includes two controllers, an inverted pedal to mimic the action of kicking and two large left and right buttons. The pedal is a frame of a box with a dowel straight across with a piece of wood for John to kick. Once he kicks the ball (using the Arduino System) a flex sensor that measures the amount of force that John has kicked the pedal, the ball will be released in the game and using the two buttons John will have to dodge piles of snow, for the ball to reach the goal. Soccer John is a unique game which allows more individuals to enjoy the hobby of gaming.
Soccer John is a soccer video game with a reverse kick-pedal controller system that enables gamers with a lack of fine motor skills to experience firsthand the joy of kicking a ball into a soccer goal.
Currently, the modern gaming industry lacks the ability to manufacture gaming controllers and systems that are specifically made for certain users. For the majority of the world's gamers, this might not appear as a problem. However, for those with a lack of fine motor skills, the dearth of adaptability makes it hard to participate. In an effort to help solve this issue, Soccer John, a soccer video game with a pedal controller system was made.
The inspiration for Soccer John came from a student at the English High School in Boston. Although his specific disability was never disclosed, John was often uncertain and forgetful. However, this did not stop John from expressing his love for soccer, the snow and Christmas time. Thus, Soccer John was born to better intrigue John's mind through his affinities. John's controller system is housed in a hollowed out box with a rotating pedal to allow for a kicking motion. The system is then linked to a computer that directs a soccer ball towards a goal. Once the ball is set in motion, John will have access to two buttons--one left and one right-- which will allow him to determine the path of the ball. As John progresses throughout the game, the system will get more difficult as snow builds up around him. Uniquely, Soccer John utilizes an Arduino system and a motion sensor to take the pressure exerted from the kick of the pedal and relay it to a computer for the game to function. Once the kick comes in, the ball will gravitate towards the goal! Soccer John hopes to enable a user as much as possible!