Toots, as you know, are magical elephants who can use Wish Magic and live on the Island of Tootanga. Some Toots have special abilities.
The Magic Toots are the Toots who are special and famous. The Basic 8 are Magic Toots, and so are some other characters. You can meet the Magic Toots in the game all the time: they never sign off.
Other Toots are players. Some of these players have special abilities.
Operators can help you if you have problems in the game. They can use special magic to help you when you need them. If you need to contact an Operator, you can dial “0” on your mobile phone in Tootsville.
If you want to become an Operator, you can learn how to help other players. There is special training before you can get special powers.
The Troops are also helpers. They don’t have special powers, but they do things that keep Tootsville running. In the past, the Toot Troops have helped to stop monsters like the evil Shade from destroying Tootsville.
Builder Toots put the world together. They have programming skills to make new things in the world.
You can tell if someone is a Magic Toot, Operator, or Builder Toot sometimes. When you click on a Toot, you can see their Paper Doll. It will have a special badge on it to let you know.
When these special Toots speak, their speech balloons are colored. Normal Toots speak with white speech balloons.
Between 2010 and into 2012, Tootsville player “Otiekinz” wrote a blog about what was happening in Tootsville. You can read it here. Hundreds of users read Otie’s stories about games and special events in Tootsville at the time.
We want as many players to enjoy Tootsville as possible.
First, we are developing the game for the most typical users. Players with a desktop or laptop computer, a keyboard and mouse, and good reading skills will be able to play. We want to make sure that everyone can enjoy the game, too.
Some Things We’re Building In
Clear Type. We have compared many different fonts (typefaces) and chosen some that are clear and easy to read. This should help users with visual impairments or dyslexia to read the screen more easily.
Speech. We are introducing speech to help early readers. While they see the words appear on the screen, they’ll also hear them spoken aloud. This will help early readers recognize words. It can also help players with poor vision.
Non-Keyboard Text Entry. We are designing a system for players who can not type. Players will be able to constrict sentences by choosing icons.
Low-Vision Players. A high-contrast mode will make it easier to identify objects in the game world. Messages and interface elements will be available in Large Type and a flash card style. Flash card text will appear in very large type, one word at a time.
Sound Captions. Visual feedback will accompany sounds for hearing-impaired players. Videos will often have captions as well.
Input Assistance Devices. We hope to enable most players to take part in the game with their preferred assistive technologies.
What Did We Forget?
Can you think of another kind of assistance we can build in to the game? Let us know.
Curators help us find and incorporate movies, music, and books into the world of Tootsville.
Tootsville.org is being built entirely by volunteers. Volunteering Highlight is a weekly column where we explore some of the things that volunteers can do to help with Violet Volts, the project that produces Tootsville.