Video Game Accessibility: Trying Out Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga

In my mind, Luke Skywalker was in love with me.

For context: I was never much of a Lego girl. But I was a “Star Wars” girl. It stood to reason, then, that the Lego Star Wars games were right up my alley. I loved everything to do with the galaxy far, far away. And as a bonus, the games were completely accessible to me.

That all changed, though, when I lost the ability to use my PlayStation 2 console. SMA has taken countless things from me over the years, but nothing hit quite so hard as my sudden inability to play video games. I’ve written previously about my love of the medium, especially during depressive episodes. So to have that taken away from me with virtually no warning? You can imagine my heartbreak.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Before the sad came the happy.

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The Lego Star Wars games allowed you to play through the feature films, recreated in video game format via Lego blocks. You could play as any number of beloved characters — Leia Organa, Obi-Wan Kenobi, the cryptic Master Yoda. I’m pretty sure you could even play as Emperor Palpatine or Darth Vader. Once you played through all six movies, you could explore the galaxy, collecting Lego blocks along the way.

Because I was a writer, I would come up with sprawling narratives as I played. I was a budding Jedi in search of a master; I was a hotshot pilot with ties to the Rebellion. In every incarnation, Luke Skywalker fell in love with me, because why wouldn’t he?

Most people were interested in the gameplay, but for me, it was the “sandbox” aspect — doing whatever I wanted whenever I wanted, with whichever character I felt like playing at the time.

Of course, SMA took that away from me as well. So I turned to other avenues, namely computer games. My love of “Star Wars” led me to the Knights of the Old Republic franchise, which completely changed my life. But the Lego Star Wars games were a thing of the past.

Until last month.

I’d heard the Lego Star Wars games were getting a face-lift with the completion of the Skywalker Saga. But I assumed I wouldn’t be able to play it. Few computer games are accessible to me, and I had no reason to believe the latest installment of Lego Star Wars would be any different. When the game was released in early April, I resigned myself to partaking from a distance.

Then I came across a walk-through on YouTube.

Walk-throughs are a way for me to determine whether I can play a game. I can usually ascertain from a short video clip if the controls will be compatible with my on-screen keyboard. But the latest Lego Star Wars installment was giving me a run for my money. Sometimes it looked accessible; sometimes it didn’t. I couldn’t really tell.

Folks in my network were raving about the game, to the point where I decided to take a chance. I’ve purchased several games over the years, only to realize they were inaccessible. It wouldn’t be the first time.

I booted up the game with zero expectations and was pleasantly surprised. The controls were a little wonky. I kept running off cliffs. But it was playable! For that matter, it was enjoyable. I was a kid again, chopping Lego blocks into pieces just for the sake of destroying something.

I can’t say I’m good at the game. There are parts I’m terrible at, and parts I need help with. But it’s a whole new pastime for me to explore. And it’s something SMA took from me that I wrested back.

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Note: SMA News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of SMA News Today, or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to spinal muscular atrophy.



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