Microsoft has announced it will help rehabilitate US soldiers who received life-altering injuries during their service. The company will be supplying a number of US Veteran Affairs rehabilitation centres with its specialised Xbox Adaptive Controllers, allowing soldiers to play games that would be too difficult to navigate with a regular controller.
The Adaptive Controller was released for the Xbox last year, and it allows players with disabilities to build a control scheme for the Xbox One that is easier for them to use. The controller is a simple large rectangle with two large buttons, a large d-pad, and the menu, view, and home buttons you find on all Xbox controllers. Players can also plug in other analogue controllers to the Adaptive Controller board, and then reconfigure the inputs. So, instead of using thumbsticks, you could plug in larger joysticks that are easier to control.
Microsoft will be supplying 22 VA centres across the US with its Adaptive Controllers. While rehabilitation is definitely one purpose of the controllers, providing soldiers with an engaging reason to spend hours using equipment that they will use in other parts of their life, it's also for simple entertainment and socialising. Gaming is a great way for people spend time together and it means less time spent on your own, which can be a great help in raising morale.
"This partnership is another step toward achieving VA's strategic goals of providing excellent customer experiences and business transformation," VA Secretary Robert Wilkie said in a press release announcing the programme. "VA remains committed to offering solutions for Veterans' daily life challenges."
"Our Xbox Adaptive Controller was designed to make gaming more accessible to millions of people worldwide, and we're partnering with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to bring the device to Veterans with limited mobility, connecting them to the games they love and the people they want to play with," Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, said in the same press release.Have you had a chance to play with an Xbox Adaptive Controller? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter.
Featured Image Credit: Microsoft