Blindfold Games Survey, Part 2

In the survey that over 500 fans of Blindfold Games answered, I asked what types of games would you like to have next?


survey checklist

Right now, I have about 5 types of games: TV game shows, similar to Wheel of Fortune, Sports Games, such as Bowling and Shuffleboard, Puzzle Games, similar to Candy Crush, Action Games, such as a Horse-racing game and Pinball, Casino Games, like Roulette and Video Poker, and Card Games, such as Crazy Eights, Uno or Hearts.

Topping the list was TV Game show games at 36%, followed by Sports Games at 29%.  Puzzle Games, Action Games and Card games came in around 10% each, and Casino Games at under 4%.

I was surprised at these results, because, for a while, many game players would tell me how much they loved the casino games and wanted more of them.  Based on that, I built Video Poker, Dealer Poker, Blackjack, Bingo, Roulette and Craps.  There just aren’t that many casino games left to build.

The other question asked which game do you want to play with another person, instead of against the computer.  In almost all of the games I’ve built, you play against a computer robot, where you can set the skill level, and name, of your opponent.

Over 40% of the people asked to play Bowling with their friends,  followed by Spin-and-Solve.  Right now, 3 of the Blindfold Games let you compete against your friends, either through Apple’s Game Center, or against your friends in the same room (using WIFI and Bluetooth technology).






Blindfold Games Survey

In April, I conducted a survey amongst the visually impaired people who play my games.

survey image

Every day, I receive an email from someone suggesting a game for me to create.  Usually, I have no idea how popular that game will be, and sometimes I query the dozens of blind game testers to hear their opinions.  This time, though, I decided to ask everyone what games they want next.

About 500 people answered the survey, and the two most requested games were Baseball and Monopoly; both of which were suggested by over 10%.  Jeopardy, Basketball and Golf came in next at 5% each.

Football,  the board game Life, Who Wants to Be A Millionaire, Family Feud, Tennis and Chess  were suggested by about 3% of the audience.  Backgammon, Pool, Slots, Trivial Pursuit and any type of  shooting game were suggested by about 2% of the audience.

Games with at least 1% of the people responding include Pac Man, Scrabble, Crossword Puzzles, Poker, Connect 4, Fishing, Space Invaders, Sports Management, Tic Tac Toe, Battleship, Darts, Go Fish, Cooking Games, Hockey, Mahjong, Oregon Trail, Parcheesi, Wrestling and Bridge.

I had several requests for games I’ve already built, such as Wildcard (similar to Uno) and the card game War.

In my next blog, I’ll discuss what else I learned.



Blindfold Horses?

No, this is not a blog about blindfolding a horse, and then hoping it finds its way home.

When I heard of another game where you travel by walking two fingers on the screen, I thought that would be a great gesture for a racing game, or in a sports games.  Using that gesture, I floated the idea by the blind testers, and they liked it.

fingers walking

The first step was to create an app that would recognize the walking gesture, and how fast your fingers are walking.  To give you feedback, you hear a horse walking or galloping.  The faster you walk, the faster the horse sounds.  Here’s how a walking horse sounds:


And here is how a galloping horse sounds:


When you play Blindfold Horse Race, your horse starts walking as you walk your fingers.  When you speed up your finger walk, your horse starts to gallop.  As your fingers walk on the screen faster, your horse gallops faster and faster.  The testers liked the first version of the game, where the sound speeded up as they walked their fingers faster, so the next step was to make the game fun, and make sure each time you play the game, the outcome is different.

Practice mode in Blindfold Horse Race is a time trial: you try to complete one furlong as quickly as possible.  A fast horse runs a furlong in 10 to 20 seconds, and on average, most people complete the game’s time trial in 12 seconds.  Once you finish the time trial, you can race against other horses in a 5 furlong, 10 furlong or on one mile track.

We selected names of champion horses for the you to race against, and how well those horses performed.  When you race, your horse are in the center post, and the other horses are at post one and post three.  Once the starting bell goes off, you must run your fingers on the screen and be the first to the finish line.

That made the game challenging and the testers enjoyed playing it over and over again, but they wanted an soundscape that was more than just the horse’s hooves, and they wanted more variety.








Blindfold Games: $35 for a used iPhone

I often get asked to get these games to run on other devices, such as Android phones, Windows or Mac.

iPod touch 4

All of the games are built for native iOS, and while it might be feasible to move an iOS app to tvOS for the Apple TV, or even the Mac, it’s non-trivial.  Each game would probably take a week or more to get it to work in the new Apple environment; the Mac cannot take advantage of the gyro or accelerometer  built into the phone.  The Apple TV does have some of those features, and I’m investigating it.

Porting – that’s what it is called when you modify a software program to work on a different operating system – to the Android or Windows would require a complete rewrite of the app, in a different language (iOS apps are built in Objective C or Swift, Android apps are written in Java).  For even the simplest of the apps, such as the card game War, rewriting could take weeks or months.  That would have to be repeated for each and every game.

About a month ago, I heard from someone who had problems with some of the Blindfold Games on his iPod running iOS 7.1.   He said the game crashed to the home screen every time he played that game.  When you build iPhone or iPad apps, you can test them out on the iPhone and iPad emulators that comes with the software development tools for the Mac.

Unfortunately, the iPhone emulator on the Mac has iOS 8.0 through 9.3, but nothing older than that.  I found an iPhone 4 running iOS 7.0 on eBay for $35 and bought it, and received it several days later.  I found the problem and fixed the six games that experienced that problem.

Considering that there are about 36 games so far, if you want to play any of the games, and you have an Android phone, consider spending $35 to get a used iPhone.  I did.