Smilegate and AbleGamers signed an MOU to enhance Accessibility for Ga… 2023-09-20
■ Partnered with U.S. non-profit organization, AbleGamers to raise awareness and promote accessibility for people with disabilities
■ An accessibility e-leaning course for its executives and employees is in development, leveraging the “accessibility development tool” provided by AbleGamers
(Left) Min-jung Paek, CDIO of Smilegate D&I team (Right) Mark Barlet, Founder of Able Gamers
On September 12th, Smilegate announced that it had signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with AbleGamers, a U.S. non-profit organization, to strengthen accessibility in gaming for people with disabilities. AbleGamers is an organization that creates opportunities that enable play in order to combat social isolation, foster inclusive communities, and improve the quality of life for people with disabilities.
The MOU ceremony, which was held online on the 11th, was attended by Minjung Paek, Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer (CDIO) at Smilegate, and Mark Barlet, Founder of AbleGamers.
Through the MOU, AbleGamers will support Smilegate creaters to be equipped with the skills and knowledge of accessibility in gaming. As part of the initiative, AbleGamers will advise on the development of an accessibility e-learning course for Smilegate. Smilegate will also support the Korean translation of the Accessible Player Experience (APX) design pattern, a tool created by AbleGamers to provide insights into improving accessibility in game development, so that it can be spread to the domestic game industry in Korea.
“We are delighted to establish the partnership with AbleGamers, a globally recognised organization with its expertise and in-depth knowledge in accessibility. As the first Korean game company partnering with AbleGamers, this opportunity empowers Smilegate to take a lead role in shaping inclusive user experiences with accessibility. Our commitment goes beyond Smilegate and the Korean game industry, it will make a real influence to all of the content creators in the country. Our mission is to ensure a more diverse range of gamers can enjoy our content with no barriors,” stated Min-jeong Paek, Smilegate CDIO.
“We are excited to partner with Smilegate and their commitment to bring AbleGamers’ proven Game Accessibility knowledge to their studios, and eventually the larger Korean game development industry. Fantastic games come from Korea, and thanks to Smilegate, more fantastic accessible games are on the horizon. This agreement between The AbleGamers Charity and Smilegate is a historic opportunity for players with disabilities to be able to enjoy great gaming experiences," said Mark Barlet, Founder of AbleGamers.
Smilegate took a pioneering step within the Korean gaming industry by establishing a D&I team under the C-level leadership last year. Smilegate's D&I team has been at the forefront of embedding the value of diversity and inclusion through Smilegate IP and content development, ensuring players can enjoy immersive gaming experiences regardless of who they are.