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Stories
of Blossom
53 Accessibility Features

We've documented 53 accessibility features for Stories of Blossom, including Fully Voiced (Or No Speech), Environmental Captions, Large Subtitles, Large Text and Guaranteed Progress. Its accessibility is strongest in Controls and Visual but it also has features in Getting Started, Reading, Navigation 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.

Stories of Blossom is a narrative point-and-click game where you play Clara as her grandfather tells her stories. In each story, you take on a different character and go on adventures as you solve puzzles.

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

NotesAccessibility Notes

You can't adjust difficulty but there are hints and diary recaps to help. The hints are always available but don't automatically pop up. The Diary offers a number of helpful pieces of information:
  • Reminder of interactions.
  • Narrative recaps for different quests and related characters.

The game offers assistance and control customisation to enable you to select interactive elements using the keyboard rather than the mouse. You always have a list of goals for each area you are in.

The general text is large by default but you can make this larger in the menu. For subtitles, you can adjust the size, colour, background and inclusion of speaker name and intonation. You can also include audio captions and selection labels. You can also opt to highlight special words and hints in the text.

You can turn on a highlight mode that puts an outline on any interact-able object in the game. The game provides an audio description of the scene including items, characters and expressions. You can then use the Focus mode where you tab through each element on the screen, as you highlight an item you can an audio description. You also get additional audio descriptions for events that happen in the game and in the cutscenes.

DetailsGame Details

Release Date: 16/08/2023

Out Now: PC and Xbox One

Skill Rating: 8+ year-olds

Players: 1

Genres: Communication, Point-and-Click (Narrative and Puzzle)

Accessibility: 53 features

Components: 2D Overhead and Hand-Made

Developer: Soft Leaf Studios (@SoftLeafStudios)

Costs: Purchase cost

 

ControlsControls

To complete the main campaign of the game you need to use a minimum of:

  • PC: 1 mouse and 1 button.
  • Xbox: 1 stick and 1 button.
Depending on which inputs you press, the game selects either:
  • Point mode (mouse or analogue) to play with a mouse or stick as is usual for point-and-click games.
  • Focus mode (just keys) to tab through interact-able items on the screen. This is useful for players without sight, as it enables them to work through the items of the screen and have their descriptions read to them.
The following tables guide you through which buttons you can map to custom controllers:

Action Xbox PC Notes Required
Select Item A Button Left Mouse ButtonOr Spacebar.
Movement Right Stick Mouse Movement
Pause / Menu Menu Button EscapeNot required, but reduces button presses.
Highlight Interactions X Button H KeyToggles highlighting interactables.
View Inventory Y Button I KeyNot required, but reduces button presses.
Deselect Item B Button Right Mouse ButtonNot required, but reduces button presses.
View Diary D-Pad Up D Key
Menu - Quick Access D-Pad Down S Key
Sprint Left Bumper Shift (Left) KeyCan also double-select to Sprint.

Action Xbox Notes Required
Select Item A ButtonOr Spacebar.
Movement Right Stick
Pause / Menu Menu ButtonNot required, but reduces button presses.
Highlight Interactions X ButtonToggles highlighting interactables.
View Inventory Y ButtonNot required, but reduces button presses.
Deselect Item B ButtonNot required, but reduces button presses.
View Diary D-Pad Up
Menu - Quick Access D-Pad Down
Sprint Left BumperCan also double-select to Sprint.

Focus Mode Xbox Notes Required
Select Item A Button
Previous Interaction D-Pad LeftHighlights previous item and announces what it is.
Next Interaction D-Pad RightHighlights next item and announces what it is.

Action PC Notes Required
Select Item Left Mouse ButtonOr Spacebar.
Movement Mouse Movement
Deselect Item Right Mouse ButtonNot required, but reduces button presses.
View Diary D Key
Highlight Interactions H KeyToggles highlighting interactables.
View Inventory I KeyNot required, but reduces button presses.
Menu - Quick Access S Key
Sprint Shift (Left) KeyCan also double-select to Sprint.
Pause / Menu EscapeNot required, but reduces button presses.

Focus Mode PC Notes Required
Previous Interaction Cursor LeftHighlights previous item and announces what it is.
Next Interaction Cursor RightHighlights next item and announces what it is.
Select Item Spacebar

Focus Mode Xbox PC Notes Required
Select Item A Button Spacebar
Previous Interaction D-Pad Left Cursor LeftHighlights previous item and announces what it is.
Next Interaction D-Pad Right Cursor RightHighlights next item and announces what it is.

We've documented 15 accessibility features for Controls in Stories of Blossom 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:

2 Buttons: Can play with 2 buttons.

1 Button & Single Stick: Can play with button and stick.

Multiple Buttons & Single Stick: Can play with multiple buttons and a stick.

Mouse And Keyboard

Can play with the following:

Keyboard Alone: Can play with just the keyboard.

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

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.

Swap Sticks: Can swap the sticks over so that you can use the opposite sticks to control the game.

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

Remap Game Menu Access: Can remap buttons to pause, access and navigate the game menu. This enables you to specify which buttons pop-up the game menu.Whether you can remap menu navigation buttons isn't considered here.

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.

DifficultyDifficulty

We haven’t documented any accessibility features for Difficulty in Stories of Blossom 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 13 accessibility features for Getting Started in Stories of Blossom 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.

Onboarding Before Play

Before you are presented with the home screen, onboarding settings aim to aid you accessing the menus you need to adjust the game to your requirements. They can also provide an easier way of turning on important adjustments without digging through menus.

Onboarding: The first time you open the game, you are asked to confirm options for control, navigation and accessibility settings. Games can differ in what they present at this stage, but will count for this, provided they include a streamlined onboarding process.

Sightless Onboarding: For games playable without sight, the first time you open the game, all menu options and explanations are narrated by default and menus are controlled via a button or stick presses rather than an analogue cursor. This enables blind players without sight to get ready to play.

Low Vision Onboarding: The first time you open the game, the default text is high contrast and font size is at least 1/20 (46 pixels on 1080 screen) the height of the screen and in an easy to read font. This enables legally blind visually impaired players to get ready to play.

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.

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.

No Jump Scares: No sudden loud noises or popping-up scary visuals that unexpectedly appear without warning, or the option to disable them.

Assistance For Progressing

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

Guaranteed Progress With God Mode: There is no fail state for any game level, where you lose progress or have to start again. Or there are options to make failing impossible: infinite health or lives, unlimited time. Sometimes called God Mode or Unfailable.

Assisted Progress With Hints: The game notices if you get stuck (or you can press a button) and provides information to help you progress. This can offer hints or tutorials popping up during play. This includes hints after you have died, where it can suggest strategies or difficulty settings to adjust or offer to skip past problematic levels.

Assisted Recall for Narrative and Dialogue: The game enables you to review the history of conversations or provides highlights of the information you gather in a form you can review.

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.

ReadingReading

We've documented 7 accessibility features for Reading in Stories of Blossom 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.

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.

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, their Tone and Environment Sounds: Captions indicate who is speaking (or there is only ever one person speaking) and their tone, game sound and music. 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. Environmental sounds are provided as extra text within the subtitles.

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.

NavigationNavigation

We've documented 7 accessibility features for Navigation in Stories of Blossom 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

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

Head-Up Display Narrated: Key information displayed via text or icons is narrated. This enables the player to know their health, weapons, ammunition and other items without reading the head-up display.

Menu Navigation

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.

Menu Narrated: All of the game menus can be narrated for easier navigation. The game menus can therefore be navigated without reading text.

Game Choices Narrated: Player choices through textual user interface are narrated. This enables selections such as dialogue, weapon-choice or character upgrades to be made without reading text.

Remap Game Menu Access: Can remap buttons to pause, access and navigate the game menu. This enables you to specify which buttons pop-up the game menu.Whether you can remap menu navigation buttons isn't considered here.

VisualVisual

We've documented 14 accessibility features for Visual in Stories of Blossom which deal with how you can adjust the visuals to suit your needs, and offer additional information if you can't hear the game.

Contrast

Medium Contrast: Game uses generally well contrasting and bright visuals, or has a slider to make this the case.

Interactive Elements

Large Game Elements: Game characters and other elements are large and distinguishable. Enemies and player characters are at least 1/6 of the height of the screen. Or there is a zoom feature to make them larger.

Outline Interactive Elements: Characters, platforms and enemies can be outlined or highlighted for visibility. This can be with a large border around the character or a special visual mode that adjust the colour to make characters more visible.

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.

Audio Cues for Visual Events

Audio Cues for Visual Events: Audio is provided to indicate visual events. Game events or progress highlighted by visual icons, effects or animations are also accompanied by audio to signify that progress. This is useful for blind players.

Menu Audio Cues: Navigating menus provide an audio cue for each selection.

Narration for Visual Elements

This is the audible narration of in-game text. Sometimes talk about as Text To Speech, although it may include the narration of no-textual elements. This is different to Text To Voice, which provides player-player textual communication audibly.

Menu Narrated: All of the game menus can be narrated for easier navigation. The game menus can therefore be navigated without reading text.

Game Choices Narrated: Player choices through textual user interface are narrated. This enables selections such as dialogue, weapon-choice or character upgrades to be made without reading text.

Head-Up Display Narrated: Key information displayed via text or icons is narrated. This enables the player to know their health, weapons, ammunition and other items without reading the head-up display.

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.

Colour Options

Colour Blind Friendly: Game doesn’t rely on colour or can switch to colour blind friendly mode with double coding or similar way to avoid colour dependance.

Play Without Sight

Play Without Sight: The game can be played without sight. Positional/stereo sounds and haptic feedback enable play without the need to see the screen. This is useful for blind low-vision and sightless players.

AudioAudio

We've documented 2 accessibility features for Audio in Stories of Blossom 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.

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.

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 Stories of Blossom, but it doesn't offer the Audio accessibility features you require, this similar game extends 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.
 
Xbox One
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 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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