Developer Makes Disabled Gamer’s Wish Come True With An Arrow Click

Developer Makes Disabled Gamer’s Wish Come True With An Arrow Click
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When a commenter on the website of Legend of Grimrock asked about clickable on-screen arrow navigation for the upcoming indie dungeon crawler, developers said they had no plans to implement such a feature. When they found out why the commenter asked, they quickly changed those plans.

Legend of Grimrock commenter HarpoonIPA is a disabled gamer, forced to use a mouth stick for typing.

Legend of Grimrock is an old-school dungeon exploration game from developer Almost Human that harkens back to games like Dungeon Hack, Eye of the Beholder or the Wizardry series. Dungeons are tile-based, requiring only simple movements to navigate. These games often featured the option to use a mouse to click on a series of on-screen arrows, but as developer Petri Häkkinen pointed out in his initial reply to HarpoonIPA, not many people actually used them.

So HarpoonIPA explained why he was asking about the arrows, and Häkkinen added them to the game immediately.

That simple gesture has captured the hearts of countless Redditors, the selfless developers’ actions an example of how the tiniest change can make all the difference in a person’s life. You can see the full exchange in image format as it was posted to Reddit yesterday.

I’d say it’s also a testament to the indie game development process. If this were a big budget title with a well-known publisher, such a change could take weeks to be approved and implemented. Without such constraints Häkkinen was able to make the change without any trouble.

“It was no big deal to implement it, so we thought why not do it,” Häkkinen told Kotaku. “I mean, even if it would affect only the life of a single person, it is still totally worth it.”

The developers says his team is very humbled by the responses the story has garnered since going wide. “This was all totally unexpected.”

Hopefully Almost Human’s kindness will translate into big numbers for Legend of Grimrock when it releases on Windows, Mac and iOS later this year.

Gaming vs Disability – an immediate and awesome reaction from an indie game dev. [Reddit — Thanks, Jerzy!]

Legend of Grimrock [Official Website]


  • Ah pandering to the disabled. The features not good enough when they perceive a healthy person to have suggested it, but suddenly they can’t implement it fast enough when the person turns out to be disabled. Gone are the days of implementing things without being asked to help accessibility. Now it’s just whoever asks the loudest.

    • Wow. Just wow. One of the most miserable posts I have ever read. But with a witty user name like that I’m guessing you’re just a little boy trying his best to play with the cynical grown ups in the big person’s world.

      • What kind of hellish world have we become where the disabled get helped according to their needs? I remember when it used to be all about the money. Remeber the glory days? Remeber ET on the Atari? That was when this industry had it’s priorities straight; a video game that no one could play.

    • Suq, your full name is my reply.

      Sincerely, A Disabled Guy Who Struggles To Do Anything In Life, Gaming Being Very Hard To Enjoy Without A Little Help.

  • Posted on Kevin, I completely agree with you and aprtaciepe when developers give the choice to the end user rather than try to determine what they think is best for me. Give me both options and let me choose.

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