The Xbox Adaptive Controller was announced by Xbox in May 2018, and is made and designed solely for people with physical disabilities who have limited mobility and motor functions. Upon its release, Microsoft said it would give people easier access to the games they love, and had worked with charities such as AbleGamers and Special Effect to help make it possible. It is automatically upgradable for all new and upcoming Xbox systems.
What is the Xbox Adaptive Controller?
A long and flat gaming device, the Xbox Adaptive Controller takes all the buttons and controls of a normal Xbox Controller, and changes them to being switches, USBs and more. On the front it has 2 large black switches which are programmed to act as A and B, but can be changed to whatever you like, and a Home button; View button; Menu Button; D-Pad and Profile button. This Profile button allows you to create 3 different set ups for each category of game, but if you run out of space you can still play by plugging switches and joysticks or other in. At the back you have 19 3.5mm jacks to act as every button and action on the controller, and a 20th one is on the left side to act as a Headphone jack. Also on the left side you have a USB port for a left external joystick, with another one on the right hand side for a right one. You can also use the built in Co-Pilate option, which, while meant to be used to let 2 players play as one, I use to let myself use all the front controls, but use switches to help with the ones I can’t reach, or have to hold at the same time. But all of these can be easily changed to suit the needs of whoever is playing, by changing switches over.
What is There to Say About the Box?
The box for the Adaptive Controller has the Xbox Logo on top, with a picture of the controller below, and the product title in the bottom left corner. Some more information can be seen on the side, and this is where Microsoft have really thought of accessibility because the box comes with a handle to help the gamer to open it.
Inside, the first thing you’ll see is the Adaptive Controller, which is on a plastic handle so it can easily get pulled out. Some added information about starting it up is included beneath, but I think the box design was definitely really thought out. I can’t appreciate all angles of it too much because I am paralysed from the neck down and can’t open boxes, but I was able to pull it out easily.
So What are My Thoughts of the Xbox Adaptive Controller Overall?
Before the Xbox Adaptive Controller came out, I wanted to play video games, but I could only do so by mirroring them from my iPad and phone to my tv. I’ve only been using it from Christmas, but already I’ve got to experience so much, and while there are still some games that are easier to play than others, I’ve still been able to play every game somehow. Everything from the box to the design and game play has been fantastically thought out, and if you’re using external switches like I do, all you have to do is swap them in to whatever jack you use at the back. The only bit of criticism I have is that I find the D-Pad quite hard to press, but I can press the one on the actual controller easy enough. Lastly, All I have left to say, is thank you Xbox for changing my life!
The Xbox Adaptive Controller can be bought through Microsoft for £74.99, but all the switches and joysticks you’ll need are sold separately. It also allows you to use handmade switches and joysticks.