The gaming charity SpecialEffect is this month's guest on the PC Gamer forums

(Image credit: Future)

As part of our Studio Spotlight over on the PC Gamer forums, every month we invite a guest to take over for a week—giving the community insights into their studios. The lovely Failbetter folk jumped in at the beginning of the year to give advice on how to write inventive horror, and back in March Black Fox Studios told the community all about their new turn-based MMO Dreadlands. 

This Studio Spotlight is a little different. PC Gamer is not only committed to spotlighting independent studios but also organisations that are actively helping the industry we love become a better place. This month, we've invited the gaming charity SpecialEffect to the forums, where they can tell us everything about their organisation. 

SpecialEffect is a UK-based gaming charity that helps people with physical disabilities play video games. The charity helps people of all ages and gives them the opportunity to play games to the best of their abilities through a wide range of technologies.

The work that SpecialEffect does is inspirational, and it's a pleasure to have them on the forums this week. Members of the team will be talking about what the charity does to help people, highlight the organisation's different projects, and answer any questions down in the comments.

We also have a SpecialEffect giveaway. Each month for the next year, you'll have a chance to win a pair of Epos | Sennheiser GSP 370 headsets, to spread awareness about the important work that the charity does. Information about the competition and all of SpecialEffect's forum threads is listed below. Make sure you sign up to the forum to take part in all the events.

Here's a round-up of what SpecialEffect are getting up to this week in the forum:

(Image credit: SpecialEffect)

Introducing SpecialEffect: The Gamer's Charity

If you're not familiar with what SpecialEffect is then this is the place to start. SpecialEffect's Becky Frost has written in detail about what the charity does to help people with disabilities play games. With everyone currently in lockdown, she also explains how the charity is overcoming the challenges of lockdown through online assessments, remote support, and equipment provision. 

EyeMine: Play Minecraft with your eyes

EyeMine is one of SpecialEffect's on-going projects. The Windows-based software helps people who may struggle with dexterity to play Minecraft by simply moving their eyes. This thread is all about the technology behind the eye-tracking software and how it works.

Eye Gaze Games – eye controlled games from SpecialEffect 

This thread is about SpecialEffect's project Eye Gaze Games, a website where gamers with physical disabilities can play free, accessible, web-based games together across the world. Together with Sun and Moon Studios, Eye Gaze Games uses technology to track the player's eye movement, meaning that there is no need for physical inputs. Although it's still in early production, SpecialEffect hopes that the website will be an example to game developers of the additional fun and inclusion that can be gained from making games eye gaze accessible. 

How voice and mouth controls are helping Paul to play games again

Becky uses this thread to tell us about how Paul has been able to play games fifteen years after his spinal injury. After watching a video on SpecialEffects' GameAccess blog, Paul started to control his PC with mouth technology. GameAccess is a website full of videos, tutorials, tech knowledge and lessons for physically disabled gamers. Paul is just one of many people SpecialEffect has helped and you can read all about his story on the thread. 

 SpecialEffect Awareness Campaign Giveaway 

To help spread awareness about SpecialEffects work, every month for the next 12 we're giving away a pair of Epos | Sennheiser GSP 370 headsets. Details on how to enter are listed in the competition post and be sure to read all the conditions before entering.

You can find all of SpecialEffects posts in the Studio Spotlight section of the forum this week. SpecialEffect is always looking for people to donate and you can do so through their donation page over on the charity's website. If you've not seen the PCG forum, then you should head on over and have a look around. We have a range of discussion from different game genres, new releases, industry news, PC builds, and more.

Rachel Watts

Rachel had been bouncing around different gaming websites as a freelancer and staff writer for three years before settling at PC Gamer back in 2019. She mainly writes reviews, previews, and features, but on rare occasions will switch it up with news and guides. When she's not taking hundreds of screenshots of the latest indie darling, you can find her nurturing her parsnip empire in Stardew Valley and planning an axolotl uprising in Minecraft. She loves 'stop and smell the roses' games—her proudest gaming moment being the one time she kept her virtual potted plants alive for over a year.