Say what you want about Microsoft, one thing is for sure – they have all gamers at heart. When it comes to disabilities, it’s something that most gamers without any form of disability overlook. We just pick up our controller, complain that the console took a bit longer to start up than it should and sit back and enjoy our favourite game. Those with disabilities have for years now come up with clever ways to get around their problems, but Microsoft is about to officially make their gaming experience so much better.
This project kicked off back in 2014 when a Microsoft Engineer discovered a website selling custom-made controllers for people with disabilities. This company, Warfighter Engaged, had been struggling since 2012 to help injured veterans (triple amputees, quadriplegics, vets with traumatic brain injuries) to get access to the world of gaming that some of these people once loved. In 2015 Microsoft employees worked on an accessory at a hackathon using the Kinect sensor. This kept evolving as they discussed the best controller option for people with various forms of disabilities to ensure it’s something that will have a broad reach, no matter your disability. Today Microsoft finally announced that the official controller will retail at $99.99 (about R1,250) – Xbox Adaptive Controller. Here is how it works:
The new Xbox Adaptive Controller, which will be available later this year, can be connected to external buttons, switches, joysticks and mounts, giving gamers with a wide range of physical disabilities the ability to customize their setups. The most flexible adaptive controller made by a major gaming company, the device can be used to play Xbox One and Windows 10 PC games and supports Xbox Wireless Controller features such as button remapping.
— Xbox (@Xbox) May 17, 2018
If you’re a disabled gamer who have been waiting for your chance to join the wonderful world of gaming, we welcome you and hope you get to enjoy a plethora of fantastic games. We’re not yet sure when this device will be available on our shores, but we’re hoping that it’ll tie in with the launch of it in the US, which is yet to be confirmed too.
For much, much more detail on this product, be sure to go read this official reveal page.