Media Releases

University of Toronto launches the first AbleGamers Game Accessibility Arcade for gamers with disabilities in Canada

April 28, 2014

TORONTO, ON – On Sat­ur­day April 26th, the Sem­a­phore Research Clus­ter (Fac­ul­ty of Infor­ma­tion, Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to) launched the first Cana­di­an AbleGamers Acces­si­bil­i­ty Arcade, a per­ma­nent instal­la­tion in the Sem­a­phore space in U of T’s Robarts Library. It includes the most up-to-date tech­nol­o­gy and con­trollers designed to enable gamers with dis­abil­i­ties access to today’s most pop­u­lar video games.

“My hope in bring­ing AbleGamers and Sem­a­phore togeth­er is that the arcade will be used as a hub for crit­i­cal dis­cus­sion, research and inno­va­tion relat­ing to iden­ti­fy­ing and over­com­ing acces­si­bil­i­ty and design lim­i­ta­tions found in dig­i­tal games and gam­ing tech­nolo­gies,” said Dr. Sara Grimes, assis­tant pro­fes­sor at the Fac­ul­ty of Infor­ma­tion and Asso­ciate Direc­tor of Sem­a­phore.

“Not only can the arcade be used to dis­cov­er and explore the var­i­ous adap­tive tech­nolo­gies cur­rent­ly avail­able to dis­abled gamers, but also as a place for think­ing about addi­tion­al ways in which we can make dig­i­tal play even more inclu­sive, cus­tomiz­able and adaptable–from DIY design solu­tions to inter­ven­ing at the lev­el of pol­i­cy and indus­try stan­dards of prac­tice,” said Dr. Grimes.

“I am so proud that AbleGamers was able to estab­lish our Acces­si­bil­i­ty Arcade at U of T,” said Mark Bar­let, Founder and Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of the AbleGamers Char­i­ty. “I think that the event was just the start, look­ing at the capa­bil­i­ties Sem­a­phore has at their dis­pos­al, I know the stu­dents are going to build on this in ways I can­not even dream. All gamers with dis­abil­i­ties are going to ben­e­fit from this,” he con­clud­ed.

The launch was well-attend­ed by both researchers and mem­bers of the pub­lic. The arcade will be per­ma­nent­ly open to the pub­lic by appoint­ment. For more infor­ma­tion, please con­tact Amy Ratelle, Sem­a­phore Research Coor­di­na­tor at


Con­tact Infor­ma­tion:
Sem­a­phore Research Clus­ter
140 St. George Street
Tel: 416–978-0891