Hear, Hear! Let’s Make D&D Hearing Accessible
1. To provide an accessible solution for hard of hearing (HoH) Dungeon Master (DM)
2. Players, whether hearing impaired or not, will gain an immersive gaming experience
3. To demonstrate this accessibility setup at scholarly and gaming conventions and organized public games
I am a professional DM and run organized role playing games (RPGs) through my non-profit, GameOn! I am also HoH.
Origin of the Idea
I was recently at a very crowded public gaming event. I noticed a DM using a boom mic with a speaker projected to her players. The setup intrigued me. Yes, she could broadcast her voice to her table of 8 people but I need the reverse, as I’m HoH.
1. Purchase equipment to overcome DM’s hearing impairment
2. Broadcast game audio via a free app like Discord. Players connect via noise canceling bluetooth earbuds on mobile devices
3Demonstrate this setup at convention panels on accommodations at the gaming table
Advantages to this audio setup:
Accommodates DM’s hearing impairment.
Eliminates background noise of crowded public events and provides an immersive, distraction-free gaming experience.
Allows DM to create an audio-rich gaming environment with background music and sounds to enhance game play.
For players who lack a mobile device, this grant would provide one for their use (refurbished, previous generation Amazon Kindle Fire tablets are inexpensive and have bluetooth and 3.5mm audio capabilities). Some people find earbuds to be uncomfortable. For those people, wired over-ear headphones could be provided. Cleaning wipes and a USB battery hub to charge all of the devices complete the setup.
I'm a scholar interested in showcasing the joy and pro-social benefits that RPGs provide. In addition to enhancing HoH gamer experiences, this grant will help illustrate one way to accommodate hearing impairments via presentations at gaming and professional development conventions. I am a frequent presenter at such venues.
Funded by Philadelphia, PA (May 2023)