If you were to look at the various consoles that are out there right now, you would be able to tell a few key differences between them. For example, with the Nintendo Switch, PS5, and the Xbox Series X, they all have different body styles in terms of how their console “is formed”. Then, you have their software, which is very different from one another in terms of graphical input, processing power, and so on. The games they play are also different, as are the systems that run them (meaning the home screen, their various stores, and so on). But the biggest difference to some is that of their controllers, which according to gaming legend Reggie Fils-Aime, was once aimed to not be a thing anymore.
As you might know, Reggie Fils-Aime has been doing a massive tour of the gaming world via the various podcast and site interviews in order to not just promote the book that released earlier this year, but to showcase his knowledge of the gaming industry. A knowledge that apparently included plans for a controller that you could buy and then use on any console out there:
“Imagine an adaptive controller that you could play with your latest Xbox, PlayStation, or Nintendo platform. That’s what we were working on three years ago.”
The keyword here being “three years ago”, by his own admission, he doesn’t know if it’s still in the works. But he notes that he hopes that it is, and he hopes that such a controller will be released for consumers sooner rather than later.
While it may sound odd for certain people to think that all the consoles could be played off of one controller style, it’s honestly more about simplicity than anything else. Because if you were to play a game on Switch with the Joy-Cons, then go over to the PS5 controller, and the Xbox Series X controller, that’s three different hand positions, button layouts, and muscle memory reception that you’d have to adapt to. It’s not impossible to do, but for some, it’s annoying.
That’s why in recent consoles for Nintendo, they’ve allowed players to buy and hook up controllers that had a more “standard” look and layout so that you could play the games the way you wanted and not have to sacrifice ability or comfort.
The question is, could such a universal controller truly be made for the game industry? Honestly, sure. If you think about it, all it would take is the right look and the right programming, it wouldn’t even need to be approved by the big three console makers in order to work.
So perhaps Reggie Fils-Aime will get his wish after all. It might just be a matter of time.