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Microsoft unveils a new controller designed for disabled gamers - but its price isn't very accessible

Microsoft is continuing to make positive steps in the realm of accessibility, revealing a brand-new all-in-one modular controller kit designed to meet the needs of disabled gamers.

In a recent post to the official Xbox Wire blog, the company's gaming accessibility team commemorated Global Accessibility Awareness Day (which is today, May 16) and reaffirmed that: “accessibility is an ongoing journey to which Xbox remains committed.” In addition to detailing new accessibility-oriented updates coming to the Xbox Adaptive Controller and a range of video games, the company announced the upcoming Proteus Controller.

Designed by Irish electronics company ByoWave, the Proteus Controller features distinctive “snap and play” components that offer fully modular functionality. When disassembled, it looks a little bit like a set of high-tech balls. Each one of these balls is referred to by ByoWave as an individual ‘Power Cube’ and can be customized with up to six attachments. These attachments range from standard controller features like a D-pad or a set of face buttons to full-size grips and small half cubes that let you create angles of 45 or 90 degrees.

Power Cubes can be connected in a variety of ways, forming conventional controller shapes or something entirely unique depending on an individual's needs. It looks like a frankly incredible bit of kit and it’s not difficult to imagine the ways in which it could be useful. ByoWave states that the Proteus Controller works well for “one-handed gamers, gamers with chronic pain, and generally anyone who is still able to press standard buttons and inputs, but who find the layout of standard controllers problematic or cannot hold a controller.”

Although it's probably to be expected given some of the technology here, the Proteus Controller comes at the absolutely eye-watering price of $299. It’s currently available to pre-order with an early 15% discount, taking the price down to a slightly more palatable $255, but it’s still a product that’s going to be out of reach for many. The Proteus Controller is expected to ship towards the end of this year and will be compatible with Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One, and PC.

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