Following the leaked render, Microsoft has this week fully unveiled the Xbox Adaptive Controller which is a collaboration between the company and several accessibility-focused non-profit organisations.
The controller, which leaked online earlier this week, is a customisable desktop-based controller with two large A/B pads and several inputs located on top of the device which can be used to add switches, buttons, joysticks, and mounts to make it easy for people of all abilities to enjoy video games.
“This has been a milestone collaboration for us,” said SpecialEffect Founder and CEO Dr Mick Donegan. “Our experience in helping people with complex physical disabilities to access video games has enabled us to provide not only very relevant advice about features and design, but also direct feedback from a user-centred perspective. Microsoft have a competitively-priced product here that has massive potential to help many more people globally to enjoy the magic of video games.”
SpecialEffect were one of several accessibility non-profits which were asked by Microsoft to get involved with the project. Other organisations include The AbleGamers Foundation, The Cerebral Palsy Foundation, and Warfighter Engaged.
“Creating complex game control setups for people with severe disabilities takes time, care and specialist expertise,” said Dr Donegan. “With so many factors to be considered – comfort, safety, positioning, equipment selection and mounting – this first-party product provides a terrifically versatile and effective way of connecting our game setups to the console.”
Microsoft has also released a video which shows the controller in more detail as well as some of the many different ways the controller can be used by gamers with accessibility needs.
There’s currently no word on the pricing model of the controller or when it’ll launch, all Microsoft has announced is that it’s “coming this year”. For more information on how the controller was developed, head on over to the Microsoft Labs blog post.