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MLB 11 includes one-button 'Association for Disabled Virtual Athletes' mode


Sony's San Diego studio is taking a rare step to allow gamers with disabilities to play MLB 11: a one-button gameplay mode. In the "Association for Disabled Virtual Athletes" mode, AI handles the fielding, and players only have to press one button in order to swing the bat or pitch, allowing gamers who might not be able to throw a baseball to wield a baseball-style Dual Shock with ease.

The mode was inspired by Hans Smith, a baseball superfan with cerebral palsy, whose limited mobility made it impossible for him to play real baseball and difficult to play video game baseball. Sony San Diego added him to last year's MLB game as an avatar and went one step further this year, with the disability-friendly gameplay mode.

"Some organizations for disabled people aren't available to everyone -- you have to live in a big city," Smith told ESPN. "Plus, you still run the risk of getting hurt. But with a virtual organization, you can adjust the settings to whatever you want. If you can't do anything but push one button, then you can control everything else via the artificial intelligence. This levels the playing field for people who are otherwise outside the sports arena."

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