Valve is looking into controlling games with your eyes!
A lot of gamers believe that modern games are not suitable for disabled gamers, what with all the numerous keyboard buttons that need pressing and precise mouse movements, but Valve Software don’t share that view.
“Most of the accommodations we make for disabled gamers (closed captioning/subtitles, colorblind mode, in-game pausing in single player, easier difficulty levels, re-mappable keys/buttons, open-microphones, mouse sensitivity settings, use of both mouse and keyboard and gamepads, etc.) stem from functionality added to improve the experience of both able and disabled gamers,” Mike Ambinder of Valve Software explained.
Valve is always on the look for new technologies that can improve disabled gamers’ experience. “In particular, we’re intrigued by the potential of eyetrackers and the eventual ability to let gamers use their eyes as active controller inputs. For example, it may be possible in the future to let the eyes act as a proxy for the mouse cursor, letting gamers transmit navigation and targeting inputs via eye movements. If you couple this approach with the use of blinks or other proxies for button presses, you may remove the need for a mouse and keyboard (or gamepad) all together.”
This kind of technology has been looked at already by various different research universities and companies but for some reason or another it’s never hit the mainstream yet. Valve, being known as game industry leaders, are just the company with the innovation, drive, and credibility to get a product like this into the market.
If this is launched, not only will it help disabled gamers, but it will might spawn a whole range of products that may eventually make the keyboard and mouse obsolete.
Here is a video of another company, Tobbi Technology, performing research into tracking eye movement