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Aliens:
Dark Descent
27 Accessibility Features

We've documented 27 accessibility features for Aliens: Dark Descent, including Fully Voiced (Or No Speech), Large Text, Adjust Speed, No Quick Reactions and Control Assists. Its accessibility is strongest in Controls and Getting Started but it also has features in Reading, Navigation, Visual, Difficulty and Audio to reduce unintended barriers.

This report is created with input from accessibility experts and the player community to help people find games that have the accessibility features they require. Once you have found potential games on the database, there are excellent specialist accessibility sites that offer in-depth reviews to guide your purchasing decisions.

Aliens: Dark Descent is a strategy game where you command a squad of soldiers as they face creatures from the Alien films. However, rather than using brute force, you must sneak around and avoid detection, both to keep the aliens unaware of your presence and to stop your troops from panicking and missing their shots. It's this combination of stealth, survival, and strategic real-time combat that makes it stand out as an unnerving horror experience.

Our accessibility examiner, Ben Kendall, first checked Aliens: Dark Descent accessibility a year ago.

NotesAccessibility Notes

There are several difficulty settings you can pick to play on, which affect things like how long it takes an alien to spot you and how much health enemies have. Once you've started a game, you can't change the difficulty without restarting from the beginning.

You can choose whether you want the game to slow down or stop completely when you enter the skills menu (to select an action for a marine to perform). As the game is more focused on strategy than shooting prowess, quick reactions and precise inputs aren't needed. You can choose whether you rotate the camera freely or in steps, which reduces the need for fine camera control.

The game autosave occasionally, but to manually save you need to be in a safe room and use the resources you've gathered.

While all text and subtitles are high in contrast, much of it is quite small.

You can view the map at any time and can zoom in on it to make points of interest quite large. One thing to note is that when looking at the map the game continues to run in the background, so it is possible to be caught unawares by aliens.

Some parts of the game can be low in contrast and also quite small.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 19/06/2023

Price: 50% off

Out Now: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox X|S

Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds

Players: 1

Genres: Shooting, Strategy (Action, Narrative and Stealth)

Accessibility: 27 features

Components: 2D Overhead

Developer: Tindalos Int (@Tindalos_Int)

Costs: Purchase cost, In-Game Purchases and In-Game Pass

 

ControlsControls

We've documented 10 accessibility features for Controls in Aliens: Dark Descent which deal with how you control the game, different options for alternative inputs and whether you can remap these settings to suit your needs.

Gamepad

Can play with the following:

Multiple Buttons & Two Sticks: Can play with multiple buttons and two sticks.

Mouse And Keyboard

Can play with the following:

Mouse and Keys: Can play with mouse and multiple keys.

Remap Controls

Can customise the controls for the game as follows:

Remap Buttons: Can re-map all buttons so that you can use alternatives that better suit your play.

Remap Mouse and Keyboard: Can remap mouse and keyboard key bindings, on systems that support these controls.

Invert X/Y Axis: Can invert the direction required to control looking and aiming. This enables you to match your instinctive orientation when looking.

Button Combinations

Specific button operation required to play

Holding Down Buttons Optional: Holding down buttons for prolonged periods (a second or more) is not required or can be switched to toggling the action on and off. This is in addition to the movement stick/button which is not considered a hold for this purpose.

Rapid Repeated Pressing Optional: Quick, repeated button pressing (more than 2 times a second) is not required, can be skipped or switched to holding a button to trigger a repeated action.

No Simultaneous Buttons: Only one button or key required at a time, in addition to direction stick(s).

Controller Vibration

Vibration Optional: Controller vibration not used in the game or you can disable it.

Informative Vibration: Controller vibration indicates events or interactions in the game, echoing visual and audio cues. This can provide additional information about progress, approaching enemies or hitting a target.

DifficultyDifficulty

We've documented 1 accessibility feature for Difficulty in Aliens: Dark Descent which deals with how you can adjust the challenge of play, and whether this is locked once chosen or can be adjusted as you play.

Difficulty Options

Select Difficulty: Select the level of difficulty from a range of presets. This not only offers a way to adjust the challenge of a game but enables you to do so without dealing with individual criteria.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Difficulty

If you want to play Aliens: Dark Descent, but it doesn't offer the Difficulty accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Difficulty accessibility:

Getting StartedGetting Started

We've documented 5 accessibility features for Getting Started in Aliens: Dark Descent which deal with what support is offered to get started with the game. This includes customising the experience when you first open the game via any onboarding processes it provides as well as tutorials and other assistance when you first start playing.

Assistance Getting Starting

These features aid your play of the game in terms of cognitive load on learning controls, dealing with pressure and coping with the environment and challenges.

Tutorials: There are helpful tutorials and instructions on how to play. Information is provided in a timely manner, with appropriate level of detail.

View Control Mapping: You can view a map of controls during play. This clearly displays the mappings of actions to buttons/keys/mouse/keyboard without having to leave the game. This includes games that always display buttons to press during play.

Assistance With Controls: The game can automatically assist with aiming, steering, reloading, jumping, running etc. This reduces the challenge of certain aspects of play to remove barriers and make control of characters more accessible.

Reaction-Time Not Critical: Individual game actions don’t need quick reactions, or there are settings to lower the requirement for quick reactions. This means you don't need to quickly press a button in response to an on-screen prompt, target a fast-moving target or skillfully complete a scenario against the clock.

Adjust Speed: Adjust the speed of the game at critical moments or throughout, or rewind play for a second attempt, to ease reaction times. By slowing the game, you have more time to interpret what is happening and then execute your actions. It also reduces the pressure on getting things right quickly or the first time you attempt them.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Getting Started

If you want to play Aliens: Dark Descent, but it doesn't offer the Getting Started accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Getting Started accessibility:

ReadingReading

We've documented 4 accessibility features for Reading in Aliens: Dark Descent which deal with how much reading or listening comprehension is required, how well the game provides visual and audible access to the text and whether subtitles and captions are a good fit for purpose.

Reading Level

How much reading is required to play the game's main path or story and how complex the language is. The presence of voiced characters doesn't reduce this requirement, as it's recorded as a separate datapoint.

Simple Minimal Reading: Minimal reading is required. The quantity and complexity of reading are at a level that a primary/elementary student (9-year-old) could understand.

Text Visibility

Large Clear Text: All essential text is large and clear or can be adjusted to be. The general text used throughout the game in menus, instructions and other key information (excluding subtitles that are assessed separately) is at least 1/20 (46 pixels on 1080 screen) the height on landscape screens and at least 1/40 height on portrait screens. We base this on the full line-height, including the space above and below the letters.

Subtitles

All Speech Subtitled (Or No Speech In Game): All spoken content has subtitles, or there is no speech in the game. This means there is no requirement to hear spoken dialogue or narrative to play the game.

Voice Acted

All Dialogue is Voice Acted (Or No Speech In Game): All of the game dialogue and narrative can be voiced, or there is no speech in the game. This means there is no requirement to read the dialogue and narrative text to play the game.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Reading

If you want to play Aliens: Dark Descent, but it doesn't offer the Reading accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Reading accessibility:

NavigationNavigation

We've documented 4 accessibility features for Navigation in Aliens: Dark Descent which deal with how the game provides guidance and assistance to navigate its worlds. These are only for games that have traversal and exploration in 2D and 3D spaces.

Clarity

Large Clear Navigation: The in-game navigation and maps are clear to read. They offer large text and offer markers that are large and of high contrast. Where text or information is small, there are settings to zoom-in and increase visibility.

Clear Mission Objectives: The game provides clear, structured missions with directional guidance and advice on which can be attempted next. This also indicates (ideally on maps where they are provided) which missions can't be attempted because you do not have the appropriate items yet.

Head-Up Display

Game Map: View a map of the game world during play, with the landscape, points of interest and missions highlighted throughout the entire game. This enables the orientation of the player and the world, confirming a direction of movement and the location of destinations or points of exploration.

Menu Navigation

Digital Menu Navigation: Menu choices with Gamepad can be made without using an analogue stick to guide a cursor to a selection. For example, using D-Pad, buttons or the Stick to change menu selection in a single action.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Navigation

If you want to play Aliens: Dark Descent, but it doesn't offer the Navigation accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Navigation accessibility:

VisualVisual

We've documented 2 accessibility features for Visual in Aliens: Dark Descent which deal with how you can adjust the visuals to suit your needs, and offer additional information if you can't hear the game.

Visual Distractions

No Busy Backgrounds: No distracting backgrounds or you can make them static or blank. This includes the absence of other movement elements in the background that might distract or confuse the action. Where foreground contrast is high, this includes games with some movement in the background that doesn't make it overly difficult to distinguish what is happening.

Colour Options

Colour Adjustments: Adjust colours of characters or game elements for greater visibility. Includes the ability to select which type of colour blind mode you require.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Visual

If you want to play Aliens: Dark Descent, but it doesn't offer the Visual accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Visual accessibility:

AudioAudio

We've documented 1 accessibility feature for Audio in Aliens: Dark Descent which deals with how you can adjust the audio of the game and whether audio cues compensate for aspects of the game that are hard to see.

Adjustable Audio

Balance Audio Levels: Set music and game sound effects separately. This enables you to select your preference as well as ensure critical game sounds aren't obscured by other audio.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Audio

If you want to play Aliens: Dark Descent, but it doesn't offer the Audio accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Audio accessibility:

System Accessibility Settings

In addition to the accessibility features provided in the game, you can also use system-wide accessibility settings:

PC
Windows has extensive accessibility features. Some, like colour correction, work with games. Lots of accessibility software can be used with PC games, from voice recognition to input device emulators.
 
PlayStation 4
PlayStation 4 has a range of accessibility settings. Some are system only, some work in games (invert colours and button mapping).
 
PlayStation 5
PlayStation 5 has a range of system-wide accessibility settings.
 
Xbox One
Xbox One has a system features, the excellent co-pilot share controls mode and adaptive controller support for all games.
 
Xbox Series X|S
Xbox One has a system features, the excellent co-pilot share controls mode and adaptive controller support for all games.
 
Read more about system accessibility settings.

VSC LogoAccessibility Report supported by VSC Rating Board, PlayabilityInitiative and accessibility contributors Ben Kendall


Taming Gaming Book Written by parents for parents, the database complements the in-depth discussion about video game addiction, violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. We are an editorially independent, free resource without adverts that is supported by partnerships.

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