Even though God of War Ragnarok made waves when it released last November, there was one nonstandard part of the game that got a lot of emphasis and praise alongside the story, the graphics, the world, and more. In an interview with Comics Gaming Magazine, UX designer Mila Pavlin explained how the game’s accessibility options were implemented.
When I was brought onto the end of the project during the end of God of War 2018 my main reason for being there was because there was community feedback around accessibility. There were some articles about small text sizes being hard to read from the couch and so, on our day one, we saw down and said “how can we solve these problems and make the game more accessible?”
This question started off a huge effort by Sony Santa Monica to ensure that no matter what a person was capable of, the game would always be accessible to them, whether it was related to motor functions, sight, hearing, missing limbs, or otherwise. However, this effort also had another effect.
As we went along we started to understand more about the community. We talked to community members and consultants and did a deep dive with community members to make sure that we were connecting and bringing them into the process, and they informed us more about their frustrations. This was less of a corporate-made decision and more of a community-driven decision about how we can make this the best for each player.
God of War Ragnarok ended up having over 70 different accessibility options in its menu, which netted it a win at the Game Awards for the Most Accessible Game along with praise from many in its community. The positive reaction about the game’s accessibility has Pavlin hoping that more studios will pick this up in the future.
We want to make sure that it’s not just contained to one game or one franchise. Just like The Last of Us shared their information about accessibility, we want to make sure that we’re sharing that information with everyone.
God of War: Ragnarok is available on Playstation 4 and Playstation 5 exclusively.