Plea for Accessibility - Deaf/HoH

HepburntHepburnt Join Date: 2020-12-21 Member: 266225Members

I'm very happy with the visual improvements in Below Zero- specifically the highlighting interactable objects and the freedom to change its colour for colour-blind players. This is a welcome step in the right direction and a much needed visual accessibility feature, but Subnautica and Below Zero are still missing a key accessibility feature: accommodations for it's Deaf/HoH audience.

Hearing players have the advantage of hearing creature sounds to know what is in the area. Deaf/HoH players don't. This is apparent in the case of entering leviathan territory. As a deaf player, I have no way of knowing where the leviathans are or how I can protect myself if I cannot hear their cries. I have no way of knowing I'm in danger until the camera suddenly pivots and I am in the mouth of one.

So here is my plea: add a visual cue for audio dependent events.

Endless Ocean: Blue World had a great UI that made creature warnings more accessible to a Deaf/HoH player. If you were in danger the screen illuminated a lowered opacity red with a DANGER warning on it. It let me know I had entered radar of a dangerous creature and should be cautious. It did not give away their exact location the same way a leviathan does, but it let me know I should tread carefully and check my surroundings. Without the visual cue in Endless Ocean: Blue World, my experience would've been drastically different and more frustrating had I been getting attacked with no warning.

I am frustrated for my Subnautica and Below Zero experience because it isn't equal to a hearing player's; I don't have the same advantages or experience as they do. Adding a danger UI or another visual cue to let Deaf/HoH players know when a leviathan is near or you've entered their range would be a welcome and much needed feature not just for the Deaf/HoH audience, but for the wider community, too. I am not a low-vision player, but the highlight on interactable objects made my experience much better!

I want the same for audio cues. Making it toggleable for players so they have the option of having it on/off would add to the overall experience of your game.

Thank you for reading.


Sign In or Register to comment.