You're viewing an archived version of this project. Please visit the new Big Give site to find current fundraising campaigns.

Project information

The Global Games Room

We aim to create a user area within our website to enable disabled gamers in the UK and all over the world to access and play eye control and one-button games. We will start with simple games and increase complexity as the project develops.

It will start in late 2016 and continue indefinitely

Charity information: SpecialEffect

SpecialEffect logo
  • Need


    SpecialEffect has spent the past ten years adapting hardware and software to enable disabled people in the UK to enjoy the fun and inclusion of video games, create art and music and even communicate.

    The Global Games Room will enable people in the UK and all over the world to access a range of games and play against each other online. That means, for instance, Nathan in London who has been paralysed by a high spinal injury can play against an opponent in another part of the world


    Many disabled people around the world are prevented from living a life beyond disability because they are unable to access leisure activities with the limited movement available to them.

    Working with developers here in the UK, we aim to adapt games to make them accessible even to the most disabled people. The games will be eye and one button control and completely free of charge. So anyone, regardless of their disability and where they are in the world, can play and have fun with others.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    In year 1 to release 5 simple one button and eye control games made accessible through our website


    » Work with games developers in the UK to design and produce the five initial games to be released on our website. This includes user input and testing
    » To create a framework for hosting the games on our website to make it easy to add more as they are developed.
    » To review the initial 5 games after 6 months for usage and collate user feedback on ease of use, design and variety of games available
    » Depending on results of user feedback begin development of next phase of games to be made available

    What success will look like

    Through obtaining feedback from users and adjust existing games and develop new ones with the users' views to guide us

  • Impact


    Currently, there are no video games online that are fully accessible to the most severely disabled people, either to play solo or with others.

    This means that disabled people, all over the world, are missing out on the fun and inclusion that video games and creating art and music can bring. The Global Games Room will address this gap in people's quality of life.

    As we receive feedback from users, we will release case studies through our social media channels and our press contacts.


    The risks we have identified are (a) lack of awareness across the world of the availability of the facility (b) developers we are working with going out of business and (c) vulnerable people being targeted online by trolls.

    Risk A is minimal because we already have excellent worldwide coverage via social media. We'll work with several developers so risk of losing a partner through insolvency is minimised and trolls won't be able to communicate with users because they won't have the facility.


    We will regularly publicise user case studies to corporate partners and Foundations through our regular donor updates while we'll report to individuals through our usual presentations, newsletters and through social media.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £62,375

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £36,000 Game Development The development of 5 eye control and one-button games for initial release
      £19,500 Testing and focus group input This includes game design, arranging user focus groups and collating feedback data
      £3,500 Contingency hardware & softwar This is to pay for any additional hardware or software costs that may arise
      £3,375 Website design and maintenance This includes registration, hosting, design, implementation and maintenance. Includes review phase

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    slicedbread £15,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    The Global Games Room will initially be available to anyone in the world who has access to a PC. The user will need modifications such as an EyeGaze camera or big-button hardware. All of this available online at reasonable cost.

    To play online, the user will also need an internet connection. Provided the user can access this, because the Global Games Room is an online facility, it is available worldwide.


    Those benefiting from the Global Games Room will be some of the most severely disabled people all over the world. From people born with a severe disability to those with progressive conditions and people who have lost movement through catastrophic illness such as severe stroke and injury.

    The fact that the Games Room is available through our website means that John in Putney who has suffered a high spinal injury can play a game of Connect 4 against Jane in Brisbane who has cerebral palsy.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    SpecialEffect was founded by Dr Mick Donegan, one of the world's leading experts in assistive technology.

    The charity has ten years experience of helping some of the UK's most severely disabled people access technology my modifying hardware and software according to the movement the disabled person has available. Our multi-professional team includes occupational therapists, tech specialists and education experts. We are recognised as a centre of excellence and won the 2013 Tech4Good Award

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Dr Mick Donegan

    Founder and CEO of the charity and one of the world's leading experts on assistive technology will advise and have sign off on all aspects of project

    William (Bill) Donegan

    Project lead for research and development, Bill will work directly with developers on design and implementation of games

    Gillian Taylor

    Senior Occupational Therapist, Gillian will advise on design from a user perspective focusing on physical conditions and movement

    Various Games Developers

    Will be responsible for working with SpecialEffect staff to make games accessible online with an emphasis on eye and one-button control