PS5's accessibility controller launches in December and is frustratingly pricey

PS5 Access accessibility controller
(Image credit: Sony)

Sony has confirmed its PS5 Access accessibility controller will launch in December 2023, and it's not exactly what we'd call affordable.

The PS5 Access controller, formerly announced as Project Leonardo, will release globally on December 6, an official PlayStation Blog post confirms, with pre-orders going live next week on July 21. If you're planning on pre-ordering the accessibility controller, though, know that it'll run you $89.99 / £79.99 (around AU$130.89).

The controller features a rounded, fully customizable design, made up of 19 button caps of varying shapes, 23 button cap tags allowing players to assign inputs, three stick caps for analog movement and four expansion ports which support "additional buttons, specialty trigger switches and other compatible accessories" according to the blog post.

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Sony has has partnered with charities like Special Effect, Stack Up and Able Gamers to help inform the new PS5 controller's design. With PlayStation Studios absolutely leading the charge with award-winning accessibility suites (as we saw with The Last of Us Part 2), it's nice to see Sony bring that mentality to what appears to be a very robust piece of accessibility hardware.

What is a bit of a shame, though, is PS5 Access's price tag. It's $20 / £20 pricier than the DualSense Wireless Controller, which typically retails at $69.99 / £59.99. That's not terribly more expensive on paper, but for players who might need to rely on PS5 Access for a more comfortable gaming experience, it rings a little unfair.

I had much the same issue with the Xbox Adaptive Controller, which is undoubtedly a fantastic accessibility device, but still costs more than the Xbox Wireless Controller. Ideally, it would be nice to see accessibility controllers cost the same as those pack-in gamepads, if only to ensure the players that need them most aren't feeling short-changed after the fact.

In other gaming news, Respawn is hiring for the next Star Wars Jedi: Survivor game, and Call of Duty meets The Boys in its latest crossover event.

Rhys Wood
Hardware Editor

Rhys is TRG's Hardware Editor, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Particularly passionate about high-quality third-party controllers and headsets, as well as the latest and greatest in fight sticks and VR, Rhys strives to provide easy-to-read, informative coverage on gaming hardware of all kinds. As for the games themselves, Rhys is especially keen on fighting and racing games, as well as soulslikes and RPGs.