Video games are the biggest entertainment medium in the world, and from AAA blockbuster titles to the smaller indie games that capture the hearts of fans, there has never been a time when so many incredible gaming experiences were accessible. That being said, representation and accessibility remain two key areas where the industry could use an improvement.
From female protagonists and better accessibility settings for gamers of all backgrounds, it is important that both publishers and developers focus on making gaming a space for everyone. Those who are deaf or hard of hearing are not often in main roles or main characters, and in video games there are far fewer characters who deal with it compared to the number of people who play games and happen to be either hard of hearing or deaf.
7 Quill (Moss)
The main character of the hit PlayStation VR title Moss is named Quill. Although this little devil has never been confirmed as canonically deaf, she primarily uses American Sign Language to communicate.
Not only does this usually open up the use of ASL to a whole new audience of gamers, but it adds a layer of accessibility for the deaf or hard of hearing that is appreciated. On the same subject : The Choices Don’t Need To Stop Playing Video Games. Quill may not be deaf, but the developers of Moss have gone out of their way to make sure the deaf community is seen and understood.
6 Sumio Kodai (Silver Case)
This entry contains spoilers for The Silver Case, so be warned. Sumio Kodai is a character in the visual novel The Silver Case, a game by revered game developer Goichi Suda/Suda51. It is a detective story in a fictional city called 24 Districts. Kodai is a detective who works in the Heinous Crimes Unit to hide a secret.
As a child, he was beaten to the point where his eardrums were shattered and he was left deaf, an attack that resulted from him and his friends trying to save a girl from a horrific attack. See the article : The 8 Best Video Games Set in Japan, Ranked. He hides his deafness to protect his identity because his main goal is to finally find and take revenge on the men responsible for his disability and the attack on the young girl.
5 Shizune Hakamichi (Kajawa Shoujo)
Back in 2012, Four Leaf Studios released an interesting visual novel called Kajawa Shoujo that focused on the story of six individuals and the disabilities they lived with. The core six characters consisted of one man and five women, each of whom had a unique disability. Read also : Paolo Banchero Magic Block Saves Game, GW Assist vs Kings. Shizune Hakamichi was an 18-year-old girl who was deaf.
In addition to the character signing in the game to communicate, her friend Misha would also translate. Hakamichi is a great student who works hard and is very task oriented, which goes a long way to show that people with deafness are just as capable, if not more capable, than those without disabilities.
4 Dane (The Quiet Man)
Although The Quiet Man became the subject of Internet memes thanks to the perceived quality of the overall game, it happened to feature a deaf protagonist named Dane. The play focuses on how the trauma Dane endures as a child pushes him to create a series of drawings featuring a character he calls “The Quiet Man”.
The game is listed as an action-adventure beat ’em up and was released in 2018 for PC and PS4. The game ultimately received poor reviews, with most outlets seeing the combat and story as critical weak points of the overall experience.
3 Man-Bat (Batman: Arkham Knight)
Man-Bat isn’t exactly an A-List villain in the world of Batman, but the evil beast has made an appearance or two throughout the Batman Arkham series of games from developer Rocksteady. He was once a scientist working on a solution to his chronic deafness, a rather rare condition. His experiments resulted in him becoming a human/bat hybrid.
Thanks to his ability to use echolocation, he overcame his chronic deafness, but was left with a new reality in which he was a living nightmare. Fortunately, Batman is able to eventually heal the scientist and return him to his human form. Just be prepared for the amazing viral jump scare moment that the developers put into the game as a way to introduce Man-Bat to the player.
2 Hawkeye (Marvel’s Avengers)
Hawkeye may not be the most popular member of Marvel’s Avengers, but there are plenty of people out there who consider the shooter quite the hero. Clint Barton, known as Hawkeye, goes through a lot in his story, and one of the big moments is when he becomes deaf.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe recently adapted this story in the Disney + show called Hawkeye, where it was explained that he lost his hearing as a result of all the conflicts in which he fought together with superhumans. Marvel’s Avengers added an entirely story-based expansion to the base game focusing on Hawkeye and time travel, with Clint also being canonically deaf. Players must help him save the future by defeating a hyper-intelligent power-hungry version of the Hulk, named Maestro.
1 Hailey Cooper (Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales)
Millions of people were thrilled when Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales was first announced as it became the first video game to star the new-age web-slinging hero. Sure it delivered on the promise of giving an engaging and fascinating Miles Morales video game experience, but it also happened to be the first deaf black character in a AAA video game release.
The character’s name is Hailey Cooper and she is a street artist that players meet in the game who creates murals of Miles Morales’ Spider-Man. She is played by actress Natasha Ofili, who also happens to be deaf, and developer Insomniac Games has expressed their focus on featuring more inclusive characters in their video games.
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