Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

August 27, 2013 - Andrew Eisen

Picture this:

Your young child wants nothing more than to play video games with you and the rest of the family but she's nearly blind and can't focus on anything more than a few inches from her face.  She can't see the game unless she puts her nose to the screen and you can't see the game when her head is blocking the TV.  What do you do?

Jeremy Powers, otherwise known around GamePolitics as Zen, shared an awesome story with us this morning.  Using the second screen of the Wii U, Jeremy's daughter Jennifer was able to play New Super Luigi U with her family using the GamePad as her own personal screen.  That's her in the picture.

New Super Luigi U supports up to five players simultaneously.  Four players use Wii Remotes to control Luigi, Blue Toad, Gold Toad and the nearly invincible Nabbit while a fifth player can use the GamePad's touchscreen, which simply displays what's on the TV, to place floating blocks around the level to help or hinder the other players.  According to Jeremy, Jennifer would occasionally place one of those blocks on accident when she bumped the touchscreen with her nose.

"People complain and argue that the GamePad is an unnecessary accessory on a system that is failing to launch fast enough," says Jeremy.  "They complained that the Wii Remote was too simple and could not allow for "proper" gaming.  Yet here I sit able to say that the Nintendo Wii U...with it's GamePad and ability to use the Wii's Remotes has led to me playing a game with my daughter directly for the first time."

Read the entirety of Jennifer's latest milestone right here.

UPDATE: Courtesy of Jeremy, here's a video of Jennifer playing New Super Luigi U with her dad and the rest of the Powers brood.

-Reporting from San Diego, GamePolitics Contributing Editor Andrew Eisen


Comments

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

There's another point here that is being overlooked - the fact that Nabbit is "nearly invincible."  when my son encountered his second videogame (the first was Rocky's Boots - there was no chance of dying) - Beast, a Pacman-like game in which the Beast "chirped" you if he caught you - he totally freaked out and refused to play.  We were able to tweak the game's settings so that he (he was under 3 at the time) could win, and then we gradually increased the difficulty as he became more comfortable with losing and restarting.  Now he's a game developer! (Employed, even!)

I don't play Mario style games because my reflexes are too slow to get far, and there's no training level, just one failure after another.  Not exactly motivating.  But in Braid, I was able to re-play and actually saw my responses improving.  I got better, and the game became more and more fun.  Nintendo has created a Mario character that I might actually enjoy playing, finally. 

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

Yep, Jeremy talks a lot about Nabbit and the benefits of that character on his blog.

By the by, did you know that you can play as Nabbit in single player?  Simply hold down the ZL button on the Gamepad or Pro Controller (B on the Wii Remote) when entering a level.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

Actually, I did not lol.  If she decides to try and make a go of it by herself I will take advantage of that for sure.  Thanks!

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

Got a video of her playing tonight that I thought would go well with this lol.  

http://youtu.be/NSyvP1LVv38

 

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

The point I am making is gamers, along with some developers, are failing to see what can be done with this technology outside of a small section.  In thinking outside the box on this issue, it allowed me and my family to bring my daughter into the world of gaming instead of her having to stay on the outside and watch.  This is no different than something like Kinect allowing a disabled player to control a game in a way he/she couldn't before.  Just because it is a smaller portion of the audience doesn't make something that less important.  

People will all use technology in whatever way is best for them which will probably be different than you and me.  Your phones, computers, game systems, etc are all unique to you even though it is a base set.

Good example is the Oculus Rift.  I see so many ways it is being used now but I see it as a way in the future for her to enjoy games from the same perspective that we see, maybe even getting to experience a level of "depth" not possible before.  

Zen aka Jeremy Powers
Editor and Host of the Zenspath Podcast (now on iTunes)
www.ZensPath.com
XBL: "PsychoticZen" PSN: "Zenspath"
Nintendo Network: "Psychoticzen", 3DS: "0860-3238-7260

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

"People complain and argue that the GamePad is an unnecessary accessory on a system that is failing to launch fast enough," says Jeremy.  "They complained that the Wii Remote was too simple and could not allow for "proper" gaming.  Yet here I sit able to say that the Nintendo Wii U...with it's GamePad and ability to use the Wii's Remotes has led to me playing a game with my daughter directly for the first time."

Translation: "People make a general statement, and yet I am a fringe case."

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad he could play a game with his daughter, and that's touching and awesome and all, but it's a pretty weak argument for the point he's trying to make at the end.

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

Aren't we all fringe cases in one way or another?

I like the story. I am glad that Nintendo took the risk of adding a second screen (something that both Sony and Microsoft have copied, by the way) and brought the gift of gaming to this little girl.

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

Sure.  I'm just saying, satisfying a fringe case doesn't mean that the concerns and/or disinterest of the bulk of your customers just magically disappears.

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

The second screen wasn't actually meant to be an accessibility tool. It was meant to be another way to interface with a game. It was meant to improve upon gaming as it was. The fact that it satisfied this "fringe case" by being an accessibility tool is just a bonus.

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

This is the same mentality that makes companies think that the always online DRM is a good idea...

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

Um...  how?

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

I'm guessing he means that if the good "fringe" cases don't really matter, it's easy to decide the bad "fringe" cases don't matter either - I mean really, who doesn't have 24/7 internet in this day and age, right?

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

Because only a "fringe minority" of paying customers have problems with the DRM. Since the majority have no issues (or at lest don't report issues) then the DRM is obviously a good idea.

Re: Nearly Blind Child Plays Nintendo With Her Family

At what point did I say to ignore fringe cases?  What I'm saying is, if you aren't satisfying the main group first, satisfying fringe cases isn't going to do you much good.  It's like having veggie burgers at a bbq.  It's great to have that option for those who don't eat meat, but if you don't have real burgers for the majority, you're gonna have a lot more pissed off people than happy ones.  All the stuff you could say about why the fringe likes veggie burgers, how they're healthy, and morally superior, or whatever, is meaningless to the people that want beef.  

If you've got 95% of your target market, and you can do extra things to go after that last 5%, great.  If 95% of your market is completely disinterested in what you're doing, doing things for the 5% is not going to help you much, and is not likely to sway the 95% either.

That's all I'm saying.  Not that doing stuff for the fringe is bad, but that doing stuff for the fringe doesn't mean that the majority's concerns evaporate and they are all now obligated to jump on board.  Satisfying the fringe does not negate the dissatisfaction of the majority.  And the reason I brought this up, was because Zen tried to make the point that "This feature was really good for my very specific situation, so why is the Wii U so disliked in general?"  What I objected to was not the satisfying of a fringe case, but the suggestion that satisfying a fringe case meant that the majority were somehow wrong to not be interested as well.

 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Poll

Did Microsoft pay too much ($2.5 billion) for Minecraft developer Mojang?:
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician