Xbox is introducing new features in its stores to make it easier to find accessible games

According to an announcement from the company at its Accessibility Showcase, Xbox is making it easier to find accessibility information for games. As per the news, games in the Microsoft store will have accessibility feature tags so players with disabilities will be able to make sure games have the features they need before buying or downloading them.

Starting today, the tags are appearing in the store for members of the Xbox Accessibility Insiders League (XAIL). In the coming days, it will be rolled out to all Xbox users. In short, these tags address an issue experienced by players with disabilities.

Xbox said it is planning to gather feedback from XAIL members over the next month before expanding the availability of the tags. Part of the fine tuning for the tags involves determining specific sets of criteria that games need to meet. The list of tags includes about 20 features including narrated game menus, input remapping, and single stick gameplay.

Anita Mortaloni, Director of Accessibility at Xbox, who hopes the criteria for the tags will encourage more developers to build robust accessibility features into their games said “We look at this as an opportunity to up-level the industry a little bit.

As we continue on this journey, more and more titles will get [the tags] and hopefully inspire developers to look at those criteria and design their game with those in mind because they know that once they publish, their titles can be tagged with those because they put that work in from the beginning.”

Apart from this, there is a new “Accessibility Spotlight” section in the store with games in different categories based on the accessibility features they have. Xbox said search results will be filterable by a feature in coming months.

Xbox also announced Quick settings that will allow people to toggle accessibility features on or off without leaving the game or app, a global color filter on Xbox Series X and S, Night mode with adjustable filters and brightness, and a free gaming accessibility fundamentals course for developers.

Michael Turner
Michael Turner is an environmental activist with broad, deep experience in print and online writing, publication and site management, news coverage, and editorial team management.