A PS5 controller mod enables gamers to play with just one hand




Gaming should be for everyone, and a modder is making sure that the PS5 is exactly that, whether you have two hands or one.

Almost everyone enjoys games, even those that don’t formally consider themselves gamers. From kids’ games to cards games to casual games to hardcore console and PC games, these interactive activities have been bringing both joy and escape for centuries. Video games, however, haven’t exactly been accessible to all, even those titles that have specific accessibility features. Console controllers, for example, aren’t exactly designed for less physically able people in mind, but a one 3D printed add-on is aiming to change that without having to change the PlayStation 5 controller at all.

Designer: Akaki Kuumeri

Perhaps with the exception of joysticks that are better for very specific games, almost all game controllers are gamepads were designed for people that have full use of their two hands and ten fingers. And since games are designed around these two-handed control schemes, people with physical handicaps are often left out of these experiences. It’s more problematic in consoles like the Xbox and the PlayStation where alternative input devices are not supported unless made in partnership with large companies.

Fortunately, there is a growing awareness these days on accessibility in gaming, not just for the games themselves but also for controllers. Microsoft launched an Adaptive Controller for the Xbox long ago, but the PlayStation has yet to get something similar from Sony. There are quite a few DIY projects and mods that try to do something similar for Sony’s console, but the best thing about this One-handed DualSense is that you don’t need to modify the controller or buy anything esoteric. All you need is a 3D printer or a way to get the parts 3D printed.

With the adapter, you will be able to play a PS5 game using a regular PS5 controller with just one hand, no special hardware tricks or software features required. It doesn’t even matter if you’re left-handed or right-handed. Thanks to the PS5 DualSense’s symmetrical design, you can just mirror or flip the schematic before printing it, and it will still work. Bonus points, the mod uses PLA and TPU materials which are better for sustainability compared to other substances.

Admittedly, it’s also not the most ergonomic way to play a game with one hand, nor is it the easiest. Controlling the two analog joysticks requires that you play the controller on top of a surface, like a table or even your thigh, and move the controller in the direction you want the joystick to move. There are also extensions to bring the shoulder buttons all to one side, even allowing a gamer to easily press both L2 and R2 buttons with a single finger. The most cumbersome parts are the four U-shaped “linkages” that let you control the opposite face buttons, but thankfully they’re optional and don’t need to always be attached.

The add-on isn’t going to win any prizes when it comes to appearances, but its winning trait is its simplicity. Designer Kuumeri provides the files needed to 3D print the parts on your own or through some 3D printing service, and that’s pretty much all you need. You don’t even have to break open a PS5 DualSense controller to make it work. There are other designs available on The Controller Project’s page, and it’s quite encouraging to see how gamers and designers are becoming more conscious of the accessibility concerns of gaming.

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Get Metaverse ready with this set of modular gaming controllers designed for the future of Generation Alpha!




 

Vers is a set of controllers designed for Generation Alpha to traverse the transformed incoming video game landscape, where VR and AI are in and AR is out.

With the arrival of each new generation, our world becomes more immersed in technology. Succeeding Gen Z, Generation Alpha will be the first generation to be entirely born and shaped in the 21st century. As such, their lives have been defined by smart technology, Artificial Intelligence, and virtual reality.

In response, designers have been busy conceptualizing tech accessories to bridge reality with its virtual iterations. Vers, a set of controllers designed to traverse digital metaverses, was developed by Ye Jin Kim and Hayeon Yoo for Generation Alpha.

Nicknamed the Glass Generation, those who belong to Gen Alpha primarily experience the digital reality encased beneath their glass smartphone screens. The arrival of the Glass Generation means that our digital mediums are evolving.

Of course, that means the ways we interact with digital interfaces must evolve too. With VR and metaverses becoming the norm within the realm of video games, Kim and Yoo designed Vers because “controllers are no longer restricted to stationary, passive interactions.”

Vers is comprised of five components, all of which are contained within a cushioned, minimalist controller box. In order to appeal to Gen Alpha’s millennial parents, the controller box maintains an inconspicuous, yet modern look. Inside the hexagonal controller box, users will find a set of two pads that can be used for jumping and running, a pair of ergonomic nunchuck controllers, and a camera console.

The pair of ergonomic controllers also keep a modular design that allows for versatile gaming experiences. Transforming the controller from its original remote form to an upright position, the controller mirrors each user’s moves à la VR remotes. Then, the couple of magnetic mesh cushioned pads have a silicone underside so that kids can jump and stomp freely without slipping.

Designers: Ye Jin Kim and Hayeon Yoo







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This handheld console brings back the Microsoft Windows phone as a portable Xbox gaming device

An ideal carrier for the Xbox Game Pass, this console concept from Anestétique Projets shows what a portable Xbox would look like.

Titled the XBOX Series A, this little number hopes to be the Google Pixel of handheld gaming devices. Just as the Pixel was invented to showcase the Android experience in its true glory, the XBOX Series A is a handheld console that’s designed to unleash the true power of Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass. Designed to outshine all the handheld devices taking a stab at mobile gaming (practically aiming directly at the Razer Phone 2, ASUS ROG, and Lenovo Legion), the XBOX Series A literally puts the power of an Xbox in your pocket.

Interestingly, the Series A device isn’t a highly-specced smartphone moonlighting as a gaming device… it is, from the looks of it, a console first, and a phone later. It also isn’t a handheld computer, like Alienware’s absurd experiment with the UFO concept. The Series A is a sleek device with smartphone-ish proportions but comes with actual physical controls that appear through the screen, acting sort of like physical keys that sit right where you’d expect the virtual controls to be while playing a triple-A title game on your handheld touch-sensitive device.

The XBOX Series A comes in the console maker’s signature B/W colorway and minimal design, and just through its handheld format, reminds me a lot of a similar concept for a portable modern PlayStation. However, while Sony’s already had experience in the portable gaming domain (on three separate occasions), the Xbox famously hasn’t ever made any portable console in 20 years of its existence. Microsoft, on the other hand, has released a whole line of Windows Mobile devices through the acquired Nokia brand, before finally shuttering that project. Recently, Microsoft resurrected their handheld computing device line in the form of the Surface Duo and Surface Neo. Having already scaled down the Windows OS for those two devices, a portable Xbox gadget running Windows with the Xbox Game Pass definitely sounds like something Microsoft could pull off… even if it were as a vanity project, or as a way of stealing the limelight from Sony’s wildly successful PlayStation 5.

Speculation aside, the XBOX Series A concept is quite the looker, with a slick design and practically flush or countersunk controls that make it easy to slip the gadget into your pocket without the joystick catching any fabric. The device comes with all the controls you’d need on-screen, including two joysticks, a D-Pad, action keys, and function keys, but look over to the other side and you’ll even see L1 L2 + R1 R2 buttons on the edge of the device. On the opposite edge lie power and volume buttons, a sim tray, a USB-C charging port (for easy charging while you’re gaming), and a 3.5mm headphone jack, much to the joy of seasoned gamers.

The device also comes with a camera, placed along the middle of the device, so your finger doesn’t brush against the lens while you’re gaming. I’d imagine it also makes AR gaming a possibility, allowing you to use the camera DURING gameplay. If you look carefully, there’s a hole-punch camera on the front too, located not in its conventional position, but rather along the longer edge of the phone, so it’s on the top when you’re holding the phone in landscape – a feature that could possibly allow gamers to capture themselves while online streaming.

The XBOX Series A is, much to my chagrin, just a fan-made concept. Designed to appeal to the hardcore gaming fan base (although seasoned gamers famously detest the idea of mobile gaming), the Series A hopes to provide some sort of fusion between a console and a smartphone, basically allowing you to play games even while on the go. It definitely isn’t, from Microsoft’s business model perspective, a practical or feasible idea… so let’s just admire this little work of art and hope that Microsoft IS, in fact, planning on building a portable version of the Xbox.

Designer: Anesthétique Projets

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This transforming TV remote to remote controller is the modular design trend future gadgets must have





A cool little controller for cloud gaming and streaming content without the need for a TV remote because the controller is the TV remote and vice versa!

Cloud gaming has changed the complexion of content consumption with Stadia, GeForce Now, Amazon Luna and Microsoft xCloud venturing into the future of entertainment. Even Netflix has jumped the bandwagon and announced that its cloud gaming service integrated into the current portfolio will come out sometime next year. So, one can expect a unified ecosystem of services and accessories to keep users engaged in the loop. Accessories such as controllers and remote controls for the TV.

Even better, how about a 2-in-1 controller that doubles as a remote control for the TV input when you are now going crazy over multiplayer action titles on services like Netflix? We’ve already been awe-struck by the Netflix Necon gaming controller that’s completely inspired by the leading streaming service’s theme with a hint of Nintendo influence. Now, designer, Andrew Chang gives us all reason enough to get excited for a seamless ecosystem of streaming entertainment, high-octane gaming rush and a complete diversification of how accessories for entertainment systems are created.

This is the Olio 2-in-1 modular gadget that acts as a controller and remote for your TV too. The cute little accessory has the basic design of a controller with strategically placed buttons for streaming-centric controls. Things like AI-assistant buttons or the volume toggle and program scanning buttons. The arms of the controller retract back into the middle section when not in use to employ the trigger buttons for customizable controls inputs. And the home and play/pause buttons bang in the middle are very hard to go unnoticed when in the remote configuration as they are masked when in the controller configuration. The minimal design of this 2-in-1 accessory has truly got me excited, how about you?

Designer: Andrew Chang

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This racing wheel-inspired gaming controller is the logical evolution professional gamers deserve

In the sea of similar-looking gaming controllers and joysticks, budding designer JinYoub Woo has revamped the perspective of a basic gaming controller’s form factor. He calls this concept design, the John Varvatos Joystick and it looks more like a prop from the Star Wars franchise.

Immersive content for gaming has skyrocketed the demand for this industry and the analysts predict a revenue generation of $260 billion by 2025. Now, that tells me, the gaming industry is going big (if it already isn’t) in capturing the interest of people who never took gaming too seriously. Youngsters are perceiving gaming as more than just a vent for entertainment, and professional gamers have a lucrative gold mine in their sights – turning the highly addictive pass time into a hardcore profession. For excelling in any professional sports, you need the right tools, and the gamepad or joystick is the most important weapon in the arsenal.

The basic design of gaming controllers hasn’t changed much in all the decades since it first burst into the scene with the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1983. Fast forward to current times and the Sony DualSense Controller, Logitech F310, Nintendo Switch Pro or the Xbox Core Controller is a testament to the fact. The designer’s inspiration for the controller here comes from a mash-up of John Varvatos perfume (that’s a strange reference point) and the Sony old-school controller.

A unique hollow bottom section like the steering input of a sophisticated spaceship or even a racing car is what intrigues my interest. The shape is more ergonomic for comfort during long hours of play and gives the controller a futuristic persona. The directional pad and the input buttons have a muted feel, while the Menu button and other game buttons take the form of a rollable metal button right in the middle on either side. The bumper buttons are ergonomically placed on the top corners but could have been a bit further to the edge for big-handed gamers.

Since there is a substitution in the materials of the design, the controller is automatically lighter as compared to other popular options on the market. I would want this in my hands for long hours of action gaming on a weekend, that’s for sure. Plus it looks make it a worthy addition to every gamers arsenal.

Designer: JinYoub Woo

 

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Xbox just pulled a Nintendo with its 20th Anniversary translucent wireless controller!

“Ah, this gives me such fond GameBoy Advance memories!”

2021 marks a pretty important milestone in the timeline of gaming. It was 2 decades back that Microsoft unveiled its ambitious plans to move from computing to full-blown gaming with the Xbox, a console designed to take on Sony’s PlayStation which released in 1995… a rivalry that even 20 years later, is still going strong. To mark the 20th Anniversary of the Xbox, Microsoft announced a special edition of its wireless controller, with a uniquely nerd-pleasing translucent black design with green accents – colors that have a strong link to the Xbox brand and even their logo.

While Xbox has a history of releasing translucent variants of their controllers (notably the translucent green Xbox Duke controller), it’s a tactic that one could argue was popularized at least in the gaming circuit by Nintendo, with the translucent GameBoy, GameBoy Color, and GameBoy Advance. The controller isn’t fundamentally different in function, although it’s a hat-tip to 20 years of Xbox revolutionizing the console gaming industry. It comes along with a translucent Universal Quick Charging Stand that’s designed by Razer, which claims to charge your controller in under 3 hours, with overcharge and overheating protection.

The Xbox 20th Anniversary Special Edition Xbox Wireless Controller, which was announced earlier today, goes on sale beginning November 15th. Alongside the controller, Microsoft also announced a wired 20th Anniversary Special Edition Xbox Stereo Headset, complete with bright green highlights and a translucent black shell.

“November 15th, 2021 will mark 20 years of gaming together! Fans helped shape what Xbox is today and we can’t wait to see what the next 20 years will bring”, said Microsoft in a press release on the Xbox Wire blog. “Today, we celebrate our history together with the 20th Anniversary Special Edition Xbox Wireless Controller and 20th Anniversary Special Edition Xbox Stereo Headset – launching November 15 and available for pre-order now. We were inspired by our favorite memories together from the last 20 years and created not one, but two unique accessories to commemorate this milestone.”

Designer: Microsoft (Universal Quick Charging Stand designed by Razer)

The swappable directional pads of this gaming controller are designed to give you tactical gameplay advantage!

A gaming controller for your PC, consoles, or smartphones is one accessory every gamer should have handy. A versatile gaming controller is a quintessential piece of equipment in any setup these days. Sure options like the Xbox Controller or the PlayStation DualSense bring precise in-game controls to gain a tactical advantage. But how about a more flexible control input that is tailormade for a better user experience?

Industrial designer Dingyu Xiao of Suosi Design decided to do away with conventions and came up with the MOZER Gamepad. The controller resonated instantly with me since it solves a fundamental issue – having a single joystick layout for a varied set of games. For example, you’d need precise and fast input sticks for an FPS game, a D-Pad for sports titles such as FIFA, or a spring-loaded sling joystick for a tactile feel of shooting a stack of balls in Pool. The MOZER Gamepad makes all of this and more possible. And to top it all off, it’s wireless.

The concept is quite interesting as the user can swap the control modules instantly and it’s all plug and play. The directional pad of the controller is the one that has this modular function which Dingyu quite smartly does, I have to say. Even better, the grip of the controller hides two of the three directional pad control inputs when not in use. I’m sure gamers will be dying to get such a well-designed wireless gamepad in their hands to have a strategic advantage over their mates or online hotshots.

Designer: Dingyu Xiao of Suosi Design

 

 

Nintendo’s Switch Pro Controller drops to $59 on Amazon

The Joy-Cons are great, but when you need to get some serious gaming done on your Switch, you’re better off picking up Nintendo’s Pro Controller. Right now you can save a little money while you’re at it too — the Pro Controller is currently $59 at Am...

DJI’s new FPV Drone gives you the superpower of flight… well almost!

DJI‘s latest drone doesn’t want you to simply operate it… it wants to put you in a virtual cockpit. The DJI FPV Drone isn’t so much about being an incredible drone as it is about boasting of its one, standout feature – the FPV or First Person View. Armed with a pretty futuristic-looking pair of goggles, a low-latency video transmission unit, and a redesigned set of controllers, the DJI FPV drone is about giving YOU the thrill of the flight by allowing you to see exactly what the drone sees… in real-time!

At the heart of the DJI FPV drone are two incredibly revolutionary innovations. Firstly, its HD Low-Latency Transmission of video that gives you the ability to view high-definition footage from the drone in stunning real-time; and secondly, its set of hardware controllers, which allow all sorts of users to experience the FPV’s glorious adrenaline rush, whether you’re a novice or a pro drone-flyer.

The quadcopter drone was built for the thrill of racing. Its uniquely curved and aerodynamic design is engineered for minimal drag, as well as to house all of the drone’s modular, removable, and replaceable parts, including the battery, camera, gimbal, landing gear, and the top shell (which acts as a helmet, protecting the drone from head-on collisions). Needless to say, if your drone ever feels the wrath of a tree or a boulder, it can, for the most part, be fixed or repaired.

The Aircraft

Built for the thrill of racing, the DJI FPV drone boasts of a camera that’s arguably as cinematic as the ones found on its Phantom series of drones. The DJI FPV aircraft can record 4K/60fps video at up to 120 Mbps, capturing crisp details that make footage look as exhilarating as the flight. Electronic Image Stabilization reduces jitter during flight, while DJI boasts of being able to beam videos from the aircraft to the goggles with as little as 28 milliseconds of latency, up to a distance of a whopping 10 kilometers or 6.2 miles. With that kind of speed comes responsibility too, which is why the aircraft comes built-in with a whole set of preventive measures and fail-safes to ensure your drone doesn’t crash or plummet from the sky as its battery dies out. Multiple sensors located on the aircraft allow it to dodge obstacles, while smart RTH features ensure the drone makes its way back home when it’s low on battery. In fact, the gear comes pre-equipped with Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B), which receives flight location information of manned aircrafts in the area, sending alerts directly to your goggles to avoid problems.

The Goggles

The goggles/headset forms the primary sensory element of the FPV experience, allowing you to see what the drone sees. It isn’t like your everyday VR headset, but rather sports a super-wide 150° FOV (so obstacles never sneak up on you), along with a max frame rate of 120 FPS, giving you ultra-smooth video transmission with practically no delay… so you can zig-zag to avoid obstacles like a fighter-jet, make freefall dives like a falcon, or perform stunts like a, well, stuntman! The goggles even offer a virtual training experience with the DJI Virtual Flight App for your smartphone, allowing you to race through VR environments before you actually take to the skies.

The Controllers

To maneuver the drone, DJI offers two controllers that unlock the aircraft’s true potential. You have the standard handheld controller which lets you operate the drone as you would any other, albeit with three different modes. The S-Mode unlocks simplified flight, giving you the freedom of fully manual flight with simplified controls. The N-Mode, however, is ideal for new users and novices, offering a traditional flight experience with safety features like obstacle-sensing. The M-Mode gives you complete manual control, intended at seasoned FPV drone racers. You can customize parameters and enjoy limitless control over your aircraft, including acceleration speeds of 0-100km/h in a mind-numbing 2.0 seconds!

The second controller feels a lot like entering into VR territory. Styled like a joystick, or the kind of controller you’d get with a VR headset, DJI’s Motion Controller (sold separately) lets you literally control the drone with your hands. You can maneuver the drone by simply tilting and moving the joystick around, giving you an incredibly intuitive and natural controlling experience. Moreover, a dedicated stop-and-hover button lets you instantly pause the drone in mid-air (a feature that’s great in emergencies), and a return-to-home button allows you to summon the drone back with a simple push of a button. Every aspect of the DJI FPV aims at giving you unbridled control over the drone, and putting you in the drone’s virtual cockpit. Unlike DJI’s other drone offerings that are made for videography, the FPV is for the sheer thrill of being able to fly like a bird, jet, or quite frankly, like Tony Stark… minus the weapons and hand-repulsors of course!

The DJI FPV drone currently retails for $1,299 on DJI’s retail website, with an additional $199 for the Motion Controller.

Designer: DJI