This Man Has No Eyes, Yet Can Play World of Warcraft

Illustration for article titled This Man Has No Eyes, Yet Can Play World of Warcraft

Ben Shaw has had one hell of a last few years. Serving overseas, the former British Army soldier was wounded by a roadside explosive in Iraq, and as a result had to have both of his eyes removed.


Yet does that stop him playing World of Warcraft? No, it does not.

Before the incident, Ben was a member of the Chamber of Aspects guild, playing as Hexu, an Enhancement Shaman. And he still is, thanks to the assistance of his online friends, who can relay information to him and help him continue to play the game.

One guildmate in particular, a Death Knight called Davidian (actually a Scottish lad named Owen), serves as Ben's "Guide Dog", who warns him of upcoming threats, helps with the timing of his attacks, etc.

Here's how he does it:

My role to Ben is that I play as his in-game eyes, using the follow function put into a macro he can tab through the group and target and follow me. ... Every encounter, Ben is using a series of macros (e.g., target of target) to play his way through the game. Everything from boss fights to a simple repair goes through me. An example of this is the drakes in Dragon Soul that take you out to Warlord Zon'ozz and Yor'sahj. I have to first target them for Ben to interact with my target to take the flight out before I can.

Probably one of the most helpful things in the game for me is the addon GTFO, which helps me that little bit extra when there is loads of things going on. That just gives me that clear signal of "OK, I am dying ... That means Ben is as well — gotta move." Other than that, clear voice communication is probably the best thing to go by. Our Mumble channel is always flying with commands to help Ben, from a simple "Run in, Ben!" from a knockback to a "BLOODLUST, BEN!!!!"

Amazing story. You can read the full thing below.

"Guide dog" player and guild embrace sightless guildmate, steer team to victory [WoW Insider]



This story makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

But, besides the social interaction part. How can playing a game be fun without being able to see it?