Spyro Reignited Trilogy is one of the best games I have played this year. You can read my full review here but just know it is three awesome old-school adventure experiences packed into one gorgeous game. While it is fantastic, there is a bit of drama circling around its accessibility approach or lack thereof.
Related: Spyro Reignited Trilogy Review
In short, the game lacks a lot of subtitles. While story dialogue has text bars showing what characters are saying, all cinematics across the three games do not have any subtitles and no option to turn them on. They are just completely missing in the game which means the accessibility support is terrible.
To make things worse, Activision released a statement telling gamers that the subtitles had to be cut because certain decisions had to be made.
“When Toys For Bob set out to make an awesome game collection, there were certain decisions that needed to be made throughout the process. The team remained committed to keep the integrity and legacy of Spyro that fans remembered intact.
The game was built from the ground up using a new engine for the team (Unreal 4), and was localized in languages that had not previously been attempted by the studio.
While there’s no industry standard for subtitles, the studio and Activision care about the fans’ experience especially with respect to accessibility for people with different abilities, and will evaluate going forward.”
It sure does not look good when accessibility is something you cut from the game as you make “ultimate decisions”. This is something that should be there regardless of the situation. This means that there are gamers out there with hearing problems that cannot experience much of the game’s story now and no matter how much you try and spin the whole “integrity and legacy of Spyro” excuse, it is not fair on players.