In the accessibility market, players with great influence do not jostle for each other, especially when it comes to hardware. Xbox enjoys historic dominance with its Adaptive Controller, while several smaller companies and associations offer innovative control solutions. Playing with a disability or reduced mobility is a real challenge for both players and manufacturers. This is why the industry will never have too many alternatives to offer.
Sony now offers its own, PlayStation Access. Unveiled several months ago, this new type of controller allows us to reinvent gaming and adapt it as effectively as possible to all players, whatever their difficulty. We had the opportunity to take it in hand and test its different features. In terms of configuration, options or even installation, is the controller really so accessible? The answer in this analysis of PlayStation Access.
Disclaimer: this test was carried out by an able-bodied person. It therefore focuses primarily on the technical aspect of the product, and not on its use in the game or on its compatibility with reduced mobility.
Attention is a matter of detail. From the moment you unbox PlayStation Access, Sony thinks about its target players. The controller’s cardboard, protected by adhesive paper to prevent any accidental opening, has tabs that must be pulled to release the contents. A gesture that may seem trivial, but which pushes the brand’s intentions in terms of inclusion.
The controller is easily found in its box, as well as its accessories which are stored a little separately. There is almost nothing to assemble, buttons already find their place on the controller. Before you can use it in-game, however, you will have to customize it, and assign the buttons to certain specific commands, which will then have to be indicated using the small tokens provided.
In terms of design, Sony general, we find the same colors as on the PS5 and all its official accessories. We also find the same materials, which creates a real feeling of harmonization between the entire range. The player with reduced mobility is treated in the same boat as the others, which is always a positive point.
PlayStation Access connects to the PS5 like a classic controller. The supplied cable allows you to establish a first pairing before being able to do without it for subsequent connections. The very first time, it is interesting to see the current controller mapping and directly do customization according to individual needs.
The controller buttons are detachable quite easily, little force is required. Same thing for the assembly, so it should be accessible to many players, even with reduced mobility. However, we have reservations about command tokens which only install correctly if they are very straight, which is not an easy task even if they are valid.
In terms of installation on the playing field, the surface under the controller sticks quite well to the desk thanks to a silicone coating. In part, this allows for better support and foolproof control… or almost. The latter is still not infallible. The good thing is that the design of the controller itself is adaptable to each use. The black part, which connects the joystick to the buttons, is retractable and extendable. The controller also has a button to lock the desired position.
Among all the interchangeable accessories, we find all kinds of elements. The basic convex buttons can give way to buttons of the same format, but concave, with several heights to allow a different stroke each time. Sony also provides a special button that takes up two places instead of one, as well as a round joystick – like a fighting gamepad – and a regular-sized joystick to allow more freedom in gripping. hand. The good news is that almost everything is magnetic, making changes much easier.
Concretely, players on PlayStation Access can use and reassign all the classic buttons of the DualSense, nothing is left out. The first steps are guided by the PlayStation, all the steps are easy to understand, because they are explained and illustrated. You should know that using PlayStation Access has several advantages.
In particular, it is possible to pair it with another Access controller or a DualSense, simultaneously on the same connected profile, for optimal use. It is also possible to connect external accessories – joysticks or selectors – thanks to the four 3.5 mm ports. Once the controller is activated, you can create different profiles, and modify everything as you wish.
The orientation of PlayStation Access also factors into the equation. It can turn in four different directions to adapt to the player, but also to the type of game you are running. Once the first configuration is completed, it is quite simple to find the dedicated settings. You have to go to the settings, then to Accessories and the tab dedicated to PlayStation Access.
Switching from one profile to another is very intuitive and can be done with a button on the controller. The default profile is also still available after a long press on this same button. We would have appreciated being able to configure shortcuts, to access the key customization parameters by simply pressing a button as well. Overall, everything remains very accessible and above all extremely customizable. It remains to be seen whether this suits target players in the coming days.