One Foundation

App Developer
Hi there, Over the past couple of weeks I've been working on an update to make my card game app One Foundation accessible. It has been approved by Apple and is now on the App Store to try (http://www.appstore.com/onefoundation). It is free to play and works on iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, iOS 5 and above. This is the first time I've tried to make a game accessible so it's possible there may be a few things that could be improved. More on this later. First though, a description of the game. It's a solitaire type game using one pack of cards and is also known as Golf solitaire. 35 cards are dealt face up in 7 columns of 5 with the bottom card of each column available to move. The rest of the cards are placed face down into a pack, and then the top card is turned over to make the foundation card. The goal is to move all of the cards from the columns to the foundation, but only a card one higher or one lower than the foundation can be moved. If no card can be moved then another card can be dealt from the pack to the foundation. In portrait mode the face up cards are in the middle of the screen, with the foundation and pack side by side below them. At the bottom left of the screen is an info button which pops up some additional options, and to the right are 5 game related buttons: undo, redo, restart game, next game and challenge game. Challenge games are guaranteed to be winnable, normal games are random deals and are winnable maybe one in ten times. In landscape mode the foundation and pack move to the right of the screen (or can optionally be moved to the left). The foundation card is above the pack in this case. Games are scored and the score is at the top left of the screen along with a streak count on the right. Streaks are a count of how many cards you have moved in one go without turning over another pack card. The longer the streak the higher the score for each additional card. There's also a bonus for winning. One Foundation uses advertising to generate some revenue and the advert slides in from the top of the screen if available so you may find that the score and streak labels move down at times. The rest of the game stays in the same place though. The first time the game is played an instructions screen pops up, and the app is Game Center enabled so you may get a login dialog. So, what might work better? I played a few games to test that everything was working and one thing that I found slightly tricky was making sure that my finger didn't stray left and right while dragging up the columns to read all of the cards for a particular column. Perhaps with practice this may not be a problem though. If it is a problem then I could perhaps make the cards smaller and leave more space between the columns. At the moment each card is read in full with the value and the suit, but in this game the suit isn't actually important so I could have it just read the value and skip the suit. The cards in each column overlap to make it clearer that only the bottom card can be moved. In portrait mode this creates quite a compact play area which might be a bit fiddly. It might be easier if the cards were spread out more vertically. Anyway, hopefully these don't turn out to be big issues and you are able to enjoy the game as it stands. It's my first iOS game and the first time I've tried to make a game accessible in this way. Lewis

Forum: 

Lewis, I'm liking this game,

Lewis, I'm liking this game, But I have some suggestions to make it even better. The first suggestion doesn't even have to do with accessibility. Could you pretty please have a confirmation for the restart of games? Of course, I haven't gone into settings, And it might Artie be there… But I was playing at one of the challenge games, and I'd almost one, when I went to undo a move and hit restart by accident… There went the game… Second, as far as accessibility goes, this game is Already perfectly playable, but couple things that could be done to make it a little better. First, if the Foundation card could have voiceover speak the word foundation, just how it does when it speaks and exposed card, there wouldn't be any doubt as to where the foundation is for the first time Player. Secondly, and I don't know if there's even a way to do this, but when voiceover users navigate the screen, We often flick left and right between elements. Doing this in the game takes us to previous and next cards… But those cards are not ntecessarily the expose ones. I don't know if there's a way to make it always flick left and right to the next exposed card, since tthey are not on the same row, but it would be nice to have ready access To those exposed cards. Other than that, all I can do is commend yyou'd or a job well done! Have you thought about making a freecell game And other card games to?

Thanks for the comments. I'll

App Developer

Thanks for the comments. I'll look into a confirmation for restart, although you should be able to use redo to get you (slowly) back to the position you were in before hitting the restart button if it happens again. Adding a foundation hint shouldn't be a problem. For the flick left and right I did look into how this works when I was testing accessibility but it's a built in feature of iOS and has a default way of working. There are ways to tweak its behaviour but I felt at the time it would be better for it to work in the normal way. I'll look into it but I have a feeling that it may be tricky to make it work the way you suggest. One possibility might be to slide all the cards down when a card is removed so the exposed card is always in the same place. On the whole the card game app market is rather saturated so I wasn't thinking of making another Freecell game, but may reconsider if this proves popular. If I can find the time of course. Cheers, Lewis

Hi Louis, thanks again for

Hi Louis, thanks again for this game. I think that slighting the cards down is all you would need to do, since it would emphasize the bottom row. Flicking left and right would always give us the exposed card too, As long as were somewhere in the middle of the bottom row. Voiceover plays a sound every time it goes to a New line, So we can also use the flick gestures to know what the cards above the exposed cards would be. I don'tY tthink you will have any problem with popularity amongst the blind community, since there are only two otherv Card games that we can play. Many people have asked the developers of other card games to please make their games accessible, and Only a very select few have. That's why your game is so special. Thanks again for making it accessible.

Excellent game!

Hi! Having read this forum thread yesterday, I got the One Foundation game, and I really like it. I can understand the wish to have VoiceOver say which is the foundation card, but I found it by flicking left once from the pack, then I found the five exposed cards by flicking to the left again up to five times: I'm not saying I don't need that extra hint, I've just managed fine without it so far. I haven't played the game much, nor have I won it yet, but I really enjoy it. Many thanks, Lewis, for all your work to make this card game accessible with VoiceOver.

App directory

App Developer

Thanks for the additional comments. Could I ask a favour of someone? Could One Foundation be added to the app directory? I understand that as the developer I'm not meant to add it, which seems fair enough. Hopefully that would allow more people to find it. Thanks, Lewis

Update now live

App Developer

OK, it took a little longer than I expected to go through Apple submission, but the changes are now live. There's a prompt for restart game, the foundation card now has a hint, and there's an option for the cards to fall as one is removed. This means that the exposed cards now line up at the bottom and also means I was able to put a 'no card' message where there are gaps further up, which I think should make things clearer. This should be the default when VoiceOver is active, but there's an option in settings to disable it if you prefer the original layout. Lewis

Crashes on iPhone 5 Hi

Crashes on iPhone 5 Hi lewis, I never really figured out how to play any of those solitare type games, but am always willing to support a developer who tries to make their game accessible. Unfortunately, I've found a bug. I open the app, I hear the card shuffling sound, and VoiceOver may or may not read the face card. Then the app crashes. I've killed it from the app switcher multiple times but no luck. IPhone 5 running Ios 6. 1. 2. Just got this, so don't know if it has to do with the update or not. Thanks!

Hi Chelsea, That's

App Developer

Hi Chelsea, That's disappointing to hear. I've just tried it on my iPhone 5 to double check, but it seems to be running OK for me. I'm running iOS 6.1.4, but I'm not sure how much difference that will make. I'll keep an eye out for problems and recheck the changes though. Thanks for letting me know. Lewis

iPhone 5, works fine here

Just wanted to let you know that everything works fine here on my iPhone 5 running iOS 6.1.4. Great game, and really appreciate your efforts to make it work with voice over! Great job! I myself love card games, and as previously stated, unfortunately, there are not many accessible ones. So thanks again for all of your efforts, it is truly appreciated!

New version

App Developer

Hi all, Just to let you know that there's a new version of the app on the store now which fixes some problems with VoiceOver on iOS7. Some changes meant that the new top card wasn't being spoken when the stack was clicked (amongst other issues). I'm not sure why there's a difference between iOS6 and 7 causing this problem, but I did report it to Apple during iOS7 beta testing and was hoping that they would be able to fix it. In the meantime I found a workaround and submitted this new version. Lewis

The buttons in the game

Hello Lewis! I have plaid the game and I don't know if I miss anything. In the rules you write about the buttons in the game. One button Voice over not read is the "new game" that you write about in the rules. I find "nex game" button and get a warning about chahllenge game and that it has a winning solution. But I want not to play chahllenge game, how shall I do to not play that?

Hi Frederik, Sorry, I hadn't

App Developer

Hi Frederik, Sorry, I hadn't spotted that I gave them different names, but "New Game" and "Next Game" are the same. When you get the warning, just select the "Continue" option to go to the next game. Lewis

What might work better

I just started playing with this game, but found a lot of confusion with which card was actually on top and which cards were underneath it. Something that might work would be if a tap and hold on one of the top cards would result in reading a list of which cards were underneath it. Thanks many times for making your game so accessible.

Hi Weary Mouse, The card on

App Developer

Hi Weary Mouse, The card on top has a hint which says 'Exposed' - I think hints can be disabled, so it's possible you may not be hearing this. I did wonder about adding a way to speak all of the cards in a column, but found out that if you slowly drag your finger up from the top card, then all of the cards are read out in turn, so I thought it might not be necessary. Let me know if this works for you, otherwise I'll look into your suggestion for the next update. Thanks for the feedback. Lewis

Game Play Questions

First of all, thanks to the developer of this game. I just found it and really enjoy the accessibility and the game itself. Job well done!

I do have a couple of questions:

1. How do you know if you won/lost the game. There seems to be only one sound once the game is complete.

2. I am confused about the streaks indicator. It seems that, after each game is complete, the second number of the streak indicator always seems to change. For example, I may see streak 2-7 and the next time I may see 1-10.

Any help is appreciated.