Typical game controllers require precise finger movements that just don’t work for many people. It’s why Microsoft’s oversize Xbox Adaptive Controller was a revolutionary design for accessibility, inviting players with any sort of disability to play games using their elbows or even feet. And because no design can work for everyone, the controller also featured over a dozen open ports, so you can plug in just about any type of highly specialized controller into an Xbox.
But there’s just one problem: where can someone get all those extra controllers?
Logitech answers that question with its Adaptive Gaming Kit, the winner of our 2020 Innovation by Design Awards for Product. It’s a highly customizable collection of buttons and switches designed to plug right into the Xbox Adaptive Controller, priced at a mere $99.
Working with patients and their occupational therapists, Logitech deconstructed the typical handheld game pad into 12 oversize buttons and switches, which allows people with limited dexterity to create the perfect controller for their individual physical needs.
The entire setup includes three big buttons and three small buttons that can be stepped on or hit with someone’s forehead or elbow. It also includes four microswitches that need nothing more than a finger tap to activate, and two pressure-sensitive triggers that can work as gas pedals, allowing variable, pressure-based input. All of these buttons and switches can be stuck onto bundled Velcro pads, which can be tilted on a coffee table, placed in a lap, or wrapped around the arms of a wheelchair.
Perhaps most importantly of all, though, Logitech’s colorful design doesn’t look like some clinical tool. These buttons exude fun.
More than 46 million gamers in the U.S. live with a disability, and for some, standard controllers, mouses and keyboards can be challenging to operate. In 2018, Microsoft introduced its Adaptive Controller—a hub enabling users to plug in their preferred controls setup. Now Microsoft has partnered with Logitech to produce the Adaptive Gaming Kit. For $99, players get 10 buttons, two triggers, and hooks, pads, loops and other assorted gear that further enables them to customize their controllers. One reviewer, YouTuber Daniel O’Connor, described the kit as “honestly revolutionary.”