A blind Stardew Valley player has shared how they are able to play the game and it’s all thanks to an accessibility mod.
YouTuber and accessibility advocate Ross Minor (opens in new tab) recently shared a video to their channel explaining how they – as somebody who is visually impaired – are able to play Stardew Valley. The answer comes in the form of a mod called ‘Stardew Access‘ which utilizes a screen reader and keyboard support to guide the player around their farm. Unfortunately, this mod is currently only available on PC at the moment.
As mentioned in Ross’ video, the mod makes 99% of the game’s menus screen reader accessible, it also tells the player when they have walked over or into something in the game. The first example used in the video was the player’s double bed and the “busy” keg which indicates that the item was in use.
In terms of more precise actions in Stardew Valley, Ross also explains that due to the Stardew Access mod being open source, and therefore able to be modified by anyone, another developer (known as Grumpy Crouton) created an additional mod called ‘Accessible Tiles’ that allows players to move in a “grid like format” across the map. As the YouTuber explains, being able to count your steps to reach a precise location is particularly useful for those visually impaired, especially when gardening in the farming sim.
Other features that have been implemented into Stardew Valley via the accessibility mod include a bump sound, that lets players know when they are walking into something, an object tracker, that does many things but most helpfully alerts players to how far away an object/location/character is and leads them to it. The mod can also give players coordinates to help them find the NPCs they’re searching for as well as warp to a particular location.
This isn’t the only time Ross has managed to make a game more accessible for themselves. In another video (opens in new tab) on his channel, the YouTuber shared how they made their Animal Crossing: New Horizons island more accessible.
In the video, Ross gives us a tour of his island and shows what they’ve done to make it as “accessible and inclusive as possible.” As mentioned in the video, Ross has said they hope by demonstrating how they play games, it will inspire developers to make their games more accessible.
Looking for other ways to modify your farm? Take a look at our list of the best Stardew Valley mods.