PS5 Project Leonardo is Sony equivalent of Xbox Adaptive Controller

Project Leonardo – a more accessible controller (pic: Sony)

The year has only just started and Sony has already announced new hardware: a highly customisable controller for people with disabilities.

Although the DualSense controller for the PlayStation 5 is generally regarded as the best of its generation, in most other respects Sony has been behind the curve when it comes to controllers.

Their equivalent of the Xbox Elite series, the DualSense Edge, is only being released this month and despite the Xbox Adaptive Controller having launched back in 2018 there’s never been a PlayStation equivalent… but there will be soon.

Revealed at the CES event on Wednesday, alongside the first Gran Turismo movie trailer and new PlayStation VR2 announcements, Project Leonardo looks very different from Microsoft’s device but serves the same purpose in trying to make gaming more accessible for everyone.

Project Leonardo is only a codename, but the final controller will work either on its own or when paired with a standard DualSense controller or a second Project Leonardo device.

It was announced early in order to gain more feedback from gamers, as to what features would be helpful, with Sony revealing that it’s been working with charities such as AbleGamers, SpecialEffect, and Stack Up.

According to the PlayStation Blog, the controller will be especially helpful for players with limited motor control and those that find it hard to hold a standard controller for long periods of time.

Project Leonardo also aims to make it easier to hit specific buttons, by not clustering multiple ones in the same spot, and allowing you to change the triggers and layout to whatever is needed.

The controller doesn’t need to be held and can be used on a table or wheelchair tray, with the option to screw it into place if necessary.

It also works with third party accessories and includes four 3.5mm AUX ports to allow it to be expanded further, with the ability to configure each external peripheral however you want.

There’s no indication of a release date or price yet, and since the controller is still in development it may not release this year.

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