Street Fighter V’s most recent update has rendered the game unplayable to blind gamers, due to the removal of stereo audio.
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The update changed the in-game audio to mono, meaning blind gamers can no longer use stereo audio to play. Street Fighter V’s full range of stereo sounds enables blind players to participate in the fighting game’s competitive scene.
Mono or monaural sound is designed to emanate from one source, while stereo sound produces multi-directional audible perspective. This switch to one sound source is what is causing problems for blind players.
BlindWarriorSven raised awareness of the issue in a tweet he sent out on Monday, stating: “I just installed the new patch on my PC, went to training mode and discovered that all character sound effects like attacks, hits, jumps, block, voices etc are mono (centered).”
Please, @streetfighter @capcomfighters or anybody else at Capcom. I just installed the new patch on my pc, went to training mode and discovered that all character sound effects like attacks, hits, jumps, block, voices etc are mono (centered).
— BlindWarriorSven (@SvenvandeWege) February 22, 2021
“Street Fighter V has been an amazing and accessible game so far. I would say 90 per cent of the game is covered by good audio cues, which makes it possible for me to play on a high level,” BlindWarriorSven told NME about the update.
He commended the developers for the work they’ve done so far for accessibility, while expressing frustration about the update: “After installing the patch, I was shocked to realise that the audio of the game was changed into mono sound instead of stereo.”
“This means that I am no longer able to tell the different positions of the characters during a fight, which makes it hard or even impossible to play this game on the high level I am used to,” added BlindWarriorSven, who is confident the issue is likely just a bug.
NME has reached out to Capcom for a statement, but there has been no response at the time of writing.
Capcom recently announced that Ryu and Chun-Li from Street Fighter would be the next crossover characters to appear in Fortnite.