If you're able bodied, it's easy to underestimate just how hard it can be for people with limited mobility to use a controller. Microsoft recognized that this was an issue for members of its community, and worked with non-profits to create the Xbox Adaptive Controller.
"Designed primarily for gamers with limited mobility, the Xbox Adaptive Controller allows you to create a custom controller experience that can be adapted to meet the needs of people with various disabilities in an affordable way," explains Jenny Lay-Flurrie, Microsoft's chief accessibility officer.
"We gained feedback from people with disabilities and collaborated with gamers to build an accessible controller from the ground up, and I think this will make a huge difference for gamers of all abilities — connecting more gamers than ever before."
The controller will cost $99.99 (£74.99 / AU$129.99) and launch later this year through the Microsoft Store. Xbox boss Phil Spencer also said we'd be seeing more of the innovative device at E3 next month.
"Our goal was to make the device as adaptable as possible, so gamers can create a setup that works for them in a way that is plug-and-play, extensible, and affordable," he says, adding that Microsoft worked with The AbleGamers Charity, The Cerebral Palsy Foundation, Craig Hospital, SpecialEffect, and Warfighter Engaged when designing the controller.
"In addition to working with common adaptive switches that gamers with limited mobility may already own, it has two large buttons built in. These buttons can also be reprogrammed to act as any of the standard controller’s button inputs via the Xbox Accessories app."
The device will also work with other inputs, like the PDP’s One-Handed Joystick for the Xbox Adaptive Controller, Logitech’s Extreme 3D Pro Joystick, and Quadstick’s Game Controller.
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