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Lifeline
20 Accessibility Features

We've documented 20 accessibility features for Lifeline, including Large Subtitles, Large Text, Adjust Speed, Low Pressure and No Quick Reactions. Its accessibility is strongest in Reading and Visual but it also has features in Controls, Getting Started 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.

Lifeline is a narrative adventure where you interact with an astronaut, Taylor via text messages. You help him return home after crashing his aircraft on a foreign planet.

Our accessibility examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Lifeline accessibility 2 years ago. It was re-examined by Ben Kendall and updated 16 months ago.

NotesAccessibility Notes

This report is based on the latest game in the series, Lifeline: Beside You in Time. Previous games may differ in accessibility features available.

You can rewind the story at any point if you think you've made the wrong decision. Once you've completed the game a couple of times you can scroll back through decisions and alter them to see what you've missed through your choices.

Works well with VoiceOver on iOS, although as mentioned by AppleVis "When you come back to the game after a break wait for the beeping to stop, and touch the extreme bottom right of the screen to access the most recent messages. If you touch the bottom while the messages are still printing (and you hear the Morse code beeping sound), it will jump you back to the top."

Text size can be adjusted to be large and clear, and is all high in contrast.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 16/04/2015, updated in 2016

Out Now: Android, Mac, PC and iOS

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Players: 1

Genres: Narrative and Adventure

Accessibility: 20 features

Components: 3D First-Person and Text

Developer: 3 Minute Games (@3MinuteGames)

Costs: Purchase cost and Advertising

 

ControlsControls

We've documented 4 accessibility features for Controls in Lifeline which deal with how you control the game, different options for alternative inputs and whether you can remap these settings to suit your needs.

Mouse And Keyboard

Can play with the following:

Mouse Alone: Can play with just the mouse/mouse-button/mouse wheel.

Touchscreen

Can play with the following. Additional gestures may be required for games played with a screenreader like VoiceOver.

One Tap Targeted: Can play with touchscreen, tap in specific locations.

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.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Controls

If you want to play Lifeline, but it doesn't offer the Controls accessibility features you require, these similar games extend the Controls accessibility:

DifficultyDifficulty

We haven’t documented any accessibility features for Difficulty in Lifeline 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.

Getting StartedGetting Started

We've documented 4 accessibility features for Getting Started in Lifeline 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.

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.

Low Pressure: Game tasks aren't time-limited or there's a low-pressure mode. This avoids the pressure of being put on the clock for overarching missions, or failing tasks because you didn't reach a destination in time.

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.

Assistance For Progressing

These features aid your progress through the game offering different ways of maintaining your progression.

Save Progress Anytime: The game automatically saves progress or you can save any time. This doesn’t mean you never lose progress, but it does mean you can stop whenever you want (without having to get to a save point) without losing progress.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Getting Started

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

ReadingReading

We've documented 6 accessibility features for Reading in Lifeline 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.

Extensive Complex Reading: Extensive reading required. The quantity and complexity of reading is suitable for someone who loves long books and enjoys extended dialogue or narrative descriptions.

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.

High Contrast Text: Text colour contrasts to the background or can be adjusted to be. The text in menus, instructions and other information is presented in high contrast with a solid background.

Subtitles

Large Clear Subtitles: Subtitles are large, clear and of good contrast. They are at least 1/20 (46 pixels on 1080 screen) the height of a landscape screen and at least 1/40 height on portrait screens, or can be adjusted to be. We base this on the full line-height, including the space above and below the letters. Considered separately from the general text of the game, the subtitles are large, clear and of good contrast.

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.

Captions

Speaker Indicator and their Tone: Textual captions indicate who is speaking and their tone (or there is only ever one person speaking). This can also be indicated visually in the game with character icons or character expressions with text in speech bubbles next to the person speaking.

NavigationNavigation

We haven’t documented any accessibility features for Navigation in Lifeline 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. The following games are similar to Lifeline, and offer accessibility features for Navigation:

VisualVisual

We've documented 5 accessibility features for Visual in Lifeline 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 Flashes: No flashing strobe effects or you can disable them. This includes the absence of flashing from dramatic visual effects, explosions or weather effects like lightning.

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.

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.

Play Without Sight

Play Without Sight on iOS with VoiceOver: The game can be played without sight by fully supporting the built-in VoiceOver screen reader on iOS. This includes clear text on buttons and intuitive navigation so VoiceOver can be used to read all interactive elements.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Visual

If you want to play Lifeline, 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 Lifeline 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.

Play Without Hearing

Play Without Hearing: No audio cues are necessary to play the game well.

 

Similar Games With More Accessibility Features for Audio

If you want to play Lifeline, 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:

Android
Android has accessibility settings including ways to navigate and interact, although not all games support this.
 
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.
 
iOS
iOS has a very extensive suite of accessibility settings including ways to navigate with voice and comprehensive screen reading, though most of the features don't work with games.
 
Read more about system accessibility settings.

VSC LogoAccessibility Report supported by VSC Rating Board, PlayabilityInitiative and accessibility contributors Andy Robertson and 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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