Sony's Access controller for PS5 looks like a hot swappable dream

Back in January we got our first look at a new accessible controller design from Sony called Project Leonardo. The turtle shaped creation looked like a great modular controller for gamers who need a few more options for their inputs. Xbox has received high praise for its excellent accessibility controller and it looked as though Sony had learned plenty from its competitors' success from that first look in January. With May 18th playing host to Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Sony dropped a bit more information about its upcoming controller.

While I quite liked the turtle inspired Project Leonardo moniker, it's been given a new name as the Access controller for PS5. This seems to confirm our original suspicions that the controller isn't going to be backwards compatible and is instead designed for Sony's current flagship console. 

That being said, we've managed to get those DualSense controllers working on PC so we're still hopeful for the new Access controller. Especially given one of the new videos showing off the product talks about connecting at least two Access controllers for PS5 via the DualSense.

Thanks to being a hot swappable controller, Sony's been showing off a heap of buttons but we've finally been given a solid look at what will come in the box. The turtle shaped button wheel featuring your usual PlayStation markers and single analogue stick controller appear to be the standard configuration. 

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(Image credit: Colorwave)

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It's likely Sony will offer extra pieces on the official access controller website, but for now each controller should come with a fair few options including standard, dome, and ball shaped caps for analog sticks. Replaceable buttons in various shapes are also available including ones that hang over the edge for smaller hands as well as changeable caps to easily identify the new inputs.

What's even better is the aux connectors along the side of the controller will allow for players to add their own buttons to the device. This should be a huge win for those who've already invested time and effort into configuring their devices, and will hopefully allow those who've spent money on Microsoft's options to make use of parts they already own on this new controller. 

Sony also shared a look at the software on the PS5 for configuring the new controller and it looks like there are a tonne of options, including different positions for the base device so people can play however is most comfortable for them. Hopefully we'll be able to replicate something like this on PC too.

Unfortunately, the only thing it really feels like we're still missing is a release date and pricing. Sony has advised that those interested can sign up for further information on the website, but for now we'll just have to wait to find out more about this cool new peripheral.

Hope Corrigan
Hardware Writer

Hope’s been writing about games for about a decade, starting out way back when on the Australian Nintendo fan site Since then, she’s talked far too much about games and tech for publications such as Techlife, Byteside, IGN, and GameSpot. Of course there’s also here at PC Gamer, where she gets to indulge her inner hardware nerd with news and reviews. You can usually find Hope fawning over some art, tech, or likely a wonderful combination of them both and where relevant she’ll share them with you here. When she’s not writing about the amazing creations of others, she’s working on what she hopes will one day be her own. You can find her fictional chill out ambient far future sci-fi radio show/album/listening experience podcast right here.

No, she’s not kidding.