Bugsnax: It’s Not Our Snacktime Just Yet: An Accessibility Review

Bugsnax is adorable. Before everything else, I just need you to know that Bugsnax is adorable. OK, now we can move on. It’s not playable by the blind. This is unfortunate, but it does have some neat aspects we can still discuss now. This will be a short review, as none of these things were specifically put into the game for the blind, but let’s get to it.

First, I have to mention the 3D audio. The big question my podcast cohost Stirlock and I had about Bugsnax is whether it would make use of the 3D audio tech for the positions of our little friends. In fact, the answer is yes. However, this is surprisingly unhelpful, as the method of capturing Bugsnax involves placing a trap on their traversal path, which becomes visible after scanning them, and having them stumble into it, then collecting said trap before they escape. Here’s the funny thing about this, though. Two out of three of these steps I’ve just described are basically accessible.

When you’re scanning for Bugsnax in the area around you, you move the camera around to find them, and there is a beep when you do. You can then just press X to reveal them, and their path. The throwing of your trap is the inaccessible bit, but once that’s done, there is actually another audio cue when the bugsnack enters the trap area. So yeah, 2 out of 3 ain’t bad, right? Well, again in this case it’s not enough, but sure, I still thought it was neat.

Also, there’s the problem of navigation. Bugsnax is not a super giant open world game, but there is no navigational aid whatsoever, and Snacktooth island seems as though it’s still pretty large. There are, after all, something like 100 catchable Bugsnax around the island, meaning there has to be quite a lot of open space. Navigating to where we may wish to go is highly unlikely in this game, and is something I struggled with at once.

And honestly, that’s pretty much it. It’s nice that the audio cues in this game are there, oh and the menus don’t wrap as well, but sadly, this adorable adventure cannot be experienced to its fullest by the totally blind. Looks like we’ll have to wait for our snacktime. Thanks for reading, everyone. Stay awesome!

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