Sony unveils 'Project Leonardo' accessibility controller kit for PlayStation 5

PlayStation 5 Project Leonardo controller kit

At CES today, Sony gave a look at its latest PlayStation 5 gaming controller, but this one is very different from its previous designs. Aimed at lowering the barrier of entry for players with disabilities, Project Leonardo for the PS5 is a highly customizable controller kit that has been developed with help from organizations such as AbleGamers, SpecialEffect and Stack Up.

The unique-looking controller does not have an official name nor a price attached to it yet, but Sony gave an in depth look at its features today. The unique design is said to help players with limited motor control, letting them use the controller for long periods and be accurate without much difficulty.

"Our team tested over a dozen designs with accessibility experts, looking for approaches that would help address key challenges to effective controller use," said Project Leonardo designer So Morimoto. "We finally settled on a ‘split controller’ design that allows near free-form left/right thumbstick repositionability, can be used without needing to be held, and features very flexible button and stick cap swapping."

PlayStation 5 Project Leonardo controller kit

As for customizability, swappable components will let players mix and match a range of buttons and analog stick caps on the circular controller to craft a comfortable experience for their needs. Each button can be mapped to function in different ways, with three profile slots available to save custom configs.

Up to two Project Leonardo controllers and one standard DualSense can work together as a virtual controller for one player. Third-party solutions are supported too, with four 3.5mm AUX ports available to plug in external switches and accessories.

Sony has yet to announce how much will the PlayStation 5 Project Leonardo kit and its accessories cost, while a release date is also nowhere in sight. Microsoft has been offering its similarly focused Xbox Adaptive Controller for years now, and its $99.99 price tag has been a boon for many.

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