See The All-New Features Added To Dead Cells In Huge Update

By Jason Collins | Published

Dead cells

Dead Cells, a 2018 rogue-lite game developed and published by Motion Twin, just got a huge update that goes beyond mere hot-fixes of the game’s bugs. The update, called Breaking Barriers, brought an entire suite of new accessibility options to the game five years after it was initially released in early access (2017).

According to Polygon, the Breaking Barriers update for Dead Cells is the result of players’ extensive feedback on how the game’s publisher, and its subsidiary Evil Empire, could expand the game to better suit a wider range of needs. The company then issued an update on the development of the recently dropped content in May, detailing some of the accessibility options that were on the way at the time of publishing.

The patch eventually updated the live game and brought a vast range of new accessibility options that were tested and approved by a panel of players with various forms of disabilities at AbleGamers — all of which are detailed in an elaborative blog post on the company’s website. The developers have stated that the game was conceptualized to be “tough but fair,” which unfortunately also brought up several barriers which prevented those with disabilities from experiencing Dead Cells.

The newly added options are specifically designed to grant certain adjustments and provide a Dead Cells gaming experience that’s specifically tailored to those who need it. The company opted for higher adjustability rather than going with traditional difficulty levels, which, as seen with other gaming titles, retain much of the game’s mechanics. This means that such settings don’t actually address the needs of players with disabilities.

Dead Cells will now feature two accessibility categories, one which includes adjustable options related to input, visibility, and audio, and another which is a customizable Assist Mode. The former contains in-depth adjustability of in-game controls and specific actions, as well as the usual accessibility options found on nearly all software, like adjustable font and UI size, color schemes, and many other options designed to help those in need.

The latter, however, includes a plethora of additional adjustments that would benefit players struggling with rapid inputs. This is done by letting the game handle primary weapon attack actions while the player focuses on secondary weapons and skills. Another added option is the activation of additional lives — which excludes permanent death — allowing players to activate 1, 3, 7, or even an infinite number of lives. Less conscious gamers with less skill would call this cheating — we would congratulate the game’s developers.

In the case of Game Over, their characters would be spawned at the start of a level rather than at the beginning of the game — an option that greatly benefits gamers suffering from involuntary movements or spasms. It allows them another take if their run happens to be ruined by something that’s outside their control. Admittedly, the addition of these options defeats the entire concept of rogue-lite games such as Dead Cells, but they’re meant for those who would otherwise be excluded from enjoying the game.

So, in the end, the addition of these options in Dead Cells, despite them breaking the concept of the genre, is highly welcomed by gamers worldwide. The level of accessibility customization done by Motion Twin and Evil Empire should be induced as standard practice for the entire gaming industry, not just rogue-lite games.