Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

This comes with a trigger warning. Senua’s sacrifice is not for those who have schizophrenia or having relapses of psychosis. As someone with schizophrenia who is in recovery, Senua’s story was hard for me as it played on all the things that I would go through if I was having a relapse. 

The story of her struggle is as powerful as it is tragic. Some discredit Ninja Theory’s depiction of psychosis. It opens the conversation about how we embrace those who struggle with mental health and gives those who don’t suffer an opportunity to safely experience it for themselves.

Afterparty

Have you ever wondered or worried about what would happen if you died? Well Afterparty takes the fear straight out of going to hell in this comedic yet sincere romp through the afterlife with your best friend. Your only way of going home? Beat Satan himself in a drinking game! It is truly hilarious.

I played Afterparty on Xbox One and on controller, and I found the controls to be a little bit inconsistent at the best of times and there are quick time events that would not suit people who have dexterity issues, but these are relatively slow events.

Katamari Damacy ReRoll

Katamari is the most peculiar yet meditative experience you can have on Nintendo Switch. The plot is simple: The King of the Cosmos destroyed the sky in a drunken stupor. You are tasked with recreating the cosmos using everything you can roll. With a stellar jazzy soundtrack & an overall chill experience, it’s an absolute recommendation for the Nintendo Switch.

Accessibility: It is very difficult to recommend this to players who have accessibility concerns. It’s controlled using joy-con and by design they are unwieldy. There is little to no spoken audio in the game, and any narrative snippets are text only.

Final Fantasy XV

If you ever wanted to go on a coming of age adventure where you are going around with your friends just exploring the world, Final Fantasy XV the game for you. FFXV has a very special place in my heart. It is a game I regularly go back to just to be with those boys again and sharing in the adventure. It’s just so good!

Accessibility concerns: Would be accessible to those with a gamepad moreso than a keyboard and mouse as it can be quite action-packed. There are ways to simplify the actions but they’re not tremendously accessibility friendly.

#SelfCare

#SelfCare is one of the most chill gaming experiences you’ll ever have. It’s one of those games that you turn to in order to turn your mind off. #SelfCare has you in bed all day, & you are just focusing on yourself. It brings comfort & meditative experiences. It may open your eyes to other sides of yourself. #SelfCare is free, and a must-play. 

Accessibility Concerns: As #SelfCare is an Android and IOS app, it’s primarily touch-based in terms of its interface. There are no audio options and uses text to tell its story. There are also mini-games that require added dexterity.

Coffee Talk

Coffee Talk is a visual novel about listening to the troubles of people and helping them by serving a warm drink. It’s a game that portrays life as the complex experience it is. Coffee Talk is engaging and soothing, and a reminder that not all problems need your input for a solution to manifest itself. Sometimes, all you need in life is the ability to listen and provide some love and comfort.

Accessibility Concerns: Would be accessible to anyone using a mouse and keyboard or a gamepad. Coffee Talk lacks audio options and relies on text to tell the narrative.

The Beginner’s Guide

The Beginner’s Guide is one of those games that fall under the definition of the less you say about it the better. But it is practically essential to play. At a max run time of 2 hours, The Beginner’s Guide is a short but complete experience where we get to discuss the impact of creation, and at what stage does someone’s creative work outlive or outgrow its intention.

Accessibility Concerns: Would be accessible to anyone using a mouse and keyboard or anyone with a gamepad. It has subtitles and audio matching them so there would be little barrier to entry.

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc

This is a visual novel unlike any other. There is a Murderous Teddy Bear Headmaster in a highschool designed for pure despair. The only way to survive? Kill your classmates, but don’t get caught. Get caught, your death is designed to be the most torturous thing tailored for each person. Danganronpa is a masterclass of the powerful storytelling of visual novels.

Accessibility: This is a point and click game with subtitles, so it would be accessible for those who can use a gamepad or a mouse and keyboard. For players with visual impairments, there are large sections that are text only.