Forza Horizon 5 worked together with the disability community to create new accessibility features
In a fantastic move on the part of the Forza Horizon 5 team, they have worked together with the Gaming and Disability community to make their game more accessible to people across the globe. Forza Horizon 5, which is already doing quite well with those who have paid for early access, also has features that ensure players do not have to stick with the usual options. Instead, there are options, such as Color-Blind mode, where people experiencing color blindness can adjust the settings in the UI and the game visuals. There is also the ability to adjust the font in various ways to make words easier to read, and a screen reader narrator that can read text, buttons, and other elements out loud.
Forza Horizon 5 is also working on sign language support for cinematics, to make it easier for access- in particular the American Sign Langauge (ASL) and British Sign Language (BSL). This will ensure that there is an interpreter on the screen, which picture-in-picture display near the bottom of the screen. So for those who choose that option will be able to follow along and not have to rely on subtitles, as they may have had to do in the past. There’s also the ability to turn off background motion, which may have caused motion sickness for some.
This is a pretty big deal. While there have been the Game Accessibility Awards, celebrating games that have offered more options for those who need them, the features have often been overlooked. Microsoft has been, notably, been making strides as of late on their platform, offering the Xbox Accessibility Insiders League (known also as XAIL), where members can offer feedback to make games easier to access for people of all abilities. Honestly, having more access options can make it a better gaming experience for everyone, not just for a few.
For those interested in Forza Horizon 5, it is currently on the Xbox Game Pass and will go on sale on November 9th for Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC.