We've documented 15 accessibility features for Blasphemous, including Fully Voiced (Or No Speech), No Holds, Play Without Hearing, Fully Subtitled (Or No Speech) and Multiple Buttons & Single Stick. Its accessibility is strongest in Visual and Controls but it also has features in Reading, Navigation, Audio and Getting Started 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.
External examiner, Tyler Brinkman, first checked Blasphemous accessibility 2 weeks ago. It was re-examined by Andy Robertson and updated 2 weeks ago.
The game's main story and dialogue is fully voice-acted with subtitles but the story is hard to follow. More details about the world of Blasphemous and its story can be found in the game's item descriptions.
Cutscene subtitles are white text on a very translucent black background. This combined with the pixel art design of the game sometimes makes for less than adequate visual contrast and readability. Subtitles outside of cutscenes do not have a background and often blend in with the environmental background. Menus and menu text have poor contrast.
Much like other soul-like games progress is saved by resting at specific points. Upon death, the player is returned to the most recent save point. Resting refills the player's health and health flasks but causes all enemies to respawn.
Interactable objects have the corresponding interaction button appear when the player approaches it. Lootable items appear as ghostly orbs on the ground - they are useful indicators but sometimes hard to see.
The game's map is simplistic, using rectangles and squares to signify different segments of an area. Each different area is colour-coded and new segments are added to the map as the player enters them. The map can zoom in or out in order to display a greater or lesser amount of areas. The map provides the name of the location the player has highlighted and shows save points once they are visited. You can pin important locations on the map. Objectives are provided at the bottom of the pause menu but are vague; leaving the player to figure out what it means on their own.
There is a special area and boss rush mode where successful completion is time-limited. The rest of the game does not have the pressure of a time limit.
Release Date: 10/09/2019, updated in 2020
Out Now: Mac, PC, PS4, Switch and Xbox One
Content Rating: PEGI 16
Skill Rating: 12+ year-olds
Accessibility: 15 features
Components: 2D Side-On and Pixels
Costs: Purchase cost
We've documented 3 accessibility features for Controls in Blasphemous which deal with how you control the game, different options for alternative inputs and whether you can remap these settings to suit your needs.
Can play with the following:
Multiple Buttons & Single Stick: Can play with multiple buttons and a stick.
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.
Vibration Optional: Controller vibration not used in the game or you can disable it.
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We haven’t documented any accessibility features for Difficulty in Blasphemous which deal with how you can adjust the challenge of play, and whether this is locked once chosen or can be adjusted as you play. The following games are similar to Blasphemous, and offer accessibility features for Difficulty:
We've documented 1 accessibility feature for Getting Started in Blasphemous which deals 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.
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We've documented 3 accessibility features for Reading in Blasphemous 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.
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.
Moderate Reading: Moderate reading required. The quantity and complexity of reading are at a level that a high school student (14-year-old) would appreciate.
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.
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.
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We've documented 3 accessibility features for Navigation in Blasphemous 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.
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 Audio Cues: Navigating menus provide an audio cue for each selection.
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.
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If you want to play Blasphemous, but it doesn't offer the Navigation accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Navigation accessibility:
We've documented 4 accessibility features for Visual in Blasphemous which deal with how you can adjust the visuals to suit your needs, and offer additional information if you can't hear the game.
No Screen Shake: No screen shake effect or it is included but it can be disabled. This includes the absence of screen shake for dramatic effect as well as to indicate hits on a target.
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.
Audio Cues for Visual Events
Menu Audio Cues: Navigating menus provide an audio cue for each selection.
Motion Sickness Friendly
Motion Sickness Friendly: Doesn't have 3D movement elements that may trigger motion sickness, like motion blur, depth of field and field-of-vision. Or includes the ability to disable motion blur, depth of field and field-of-vision effects.
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We've documented 2 accessibility features for Audio in Blasphemous which deal 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.
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.
Play Without Hearing
Play Without Hearing: No audio cues are necessary to play the game well.
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System Accessibility Settings
In addition to the accessibility features provided in the game, you can also use system-wide accessibility settings:
Nintendo Switch has some built-in features, including a lockable zoom, that can be used on all games.
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 has a range of accessibility settings. Some are system only, some work in games (invert colours and button mapping).
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.