EA has expanded its Patent Pledge initiative by open-sourcing accessibility tools and tech from titles like EA Sports FC 24, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst, and EA Sports WRC.
The publisher kicked off its ‘Patent Pledge for Increasing Accessibility’ program back in 2src21 by allowing developers to use some of its patented technologies, including Apex Legends’ innovative ping system, for free.
More have been added since then, including a fresh batch that includes photosensitivity analysis tool, IRIS, and a route navigation system that was first used in Mirror’s Edge Catalyst.
EA said it developed IRIS with ease-of-access in mind and explained the tool automatically analyzes and identifies frames within videos that could potentially impact players who experience photosensitivity, which according to the Epilepsy Society in the UK and the Epilepsy Foundation in the U.S. affects at least 5 percent of the 5src million people worldwide with epilepsy.
“The tool makes it simpler to check content for flashing lights or rapidly changing spatial patterns. It also means developers can analyze content for potential photosensitivity issues early in the development pipeline,” added EA. “IRIS has already been used on select content within EA Sports Madden NFL 24, EA Sports FC 24 and EA Sports WRC, and the company plans to expand its use across additional visual content in future.”
Controls and adaptive tutorials for accessibility
Another four patents have also been open sourced including an automated player control takeover system designed to aid people with disabilities; an adaptive gaming tutorial system that provides tailored guidance on how to perform in-game commands; an animated an personalized coach that offers in-game and out-of-game insights; and that aforementioned route navigation system.
EA SVP of global affairs Kerry Hopkins said the company hopes the new additions will help developers across the industry break down barriers to participation.
“Our patent pledge was created on the principle that everyone, no matter their background, should be able to enjoy video games,” she added. “We are continuing to build on that pledge by open-sourcing our photosensitivity tool, IRIS, and opening up the use of additional patented technology which could help players with motor, cognitive, visual and/or other disabilities have a smoother game experience.”
You can find out more about all the tools and tech currently included in the Patent Pledge program over on the EA website.