Sony’s Project Leonardo: The ultimate controller kit for disabled gamers to join the PS5 party
With Project Leonardo, Sony is developing a better PlayStation 5 controller. This kit is designed to make it easier for people with limited motor control to play games on the PS5 by providing a customizable set of circular gamepads lined with buttons and directional input methods. Sony says that the system will work seamlessly with the PS5 and allow players to create their ideal gamepad by mapping buttons, swapping out hardware, and creating distinct profiles.
Project Leonardo can be used on its own or paired with DualSense controllers, and up to two Leonardos and one DualSense can be read as a single gamepad by the PS5. This gives players flexibility and also allows other people to help control the game. The hardware also includes four 3.5mm AUX ports to accommodate a variety of existing accessibility accessories and switches, and the controller can be used flat on a table or mounted on a tripod, so it doesn’t need to be held.
Sony has partnered with organizations like AbleGamers, SpecialEffect, and Stack Up to design Project Leonardo, which is clearly taking inspiration from Microsoft’s Xbox Adaptive Controller. Microsoft has a new laboratory focused on building inclusive hardware and a five-year plan to improve technology for people with disabilities, and their Adaptive Controller was designed to be accessible at a price of $100. There’s no word yet on how much Project Leonardo will cost or when it will be released.
In other PlayStation news, PlayStation head Jim Ryan announced at their CES press conference that the PS5 shortage is officially over and that “everyone who wants a PS5 should have a much easier time finding one at retailers globally starting from this point forward.”