Over 20 percent of casual gamers are disabled, games ease their pain

I’ve never been completely down-in-the-mouth about the rise of casual gaming, but I’m sure I’ve said some snarky things on the topic in the past. A new study makes me feel bad for the things I’ve said.

The Information Solutions Group conducted a survey of casual gamers and found that disabled people have embraced these games as a source of relief or distraction. Of the 13,296 casual game players polled, 2,728 respondents indicated that they were disabled in some way. About 77 percent of these gamers said that casual games provide “additional benefits over and above what a typical non-disabled player might experience.”

So, casual games are helping people? One respondent said, “Our son with Attention Deficit Disorder does not really remember he has a disability when he is playing.” Another, a 58-year-old man, said, “Games like Bejeweled and Peggle, with simple controls that are also mentally challenging and engaging are ideal for me, because my mind moves as quickly as the next guy’s but I type with a mouth-stick. In some ways, games like these are the greatest thing that’s appeared on the computer scene for people like me.”

What’s really interesting is that almost half of these disabled gamers have recommended casual games to other disabled people, and some are even playing as prescribed by a doctor.

This study may be an eye opener for gamers in the “hardcore” set. Casual games may not be for us, but it’s good to know that they’re doing disabled people some good.

Check out the full details of this study at WorthPlaying.

Dale North