Gaming a social activity that people can enjoy from home and it’s a great outlet if getting out and about is difficult. Equally, it can be a way of interacting and meeting people as you connect with other gamers online. Playing PS3 games is about to get much easier for people living with quadriplegia and give them a more sensitive and tactile way of playing games utilising a complex mouth-based controller.
The controller, known as the QuadStick, has a Kickstarter Campaign in its name and we’re pleased to say it has already more than exceeded its $10,000 target with 7 days to go.
With mouth-based controllers available in addition to those using eye movements to play, there is increased accessibility to gaming every day.
The QuadStick: How it Works
The QuadStick works through a combination of a single joystick, four sip and puff sensors, a lip position sensor and a push switch. These are all linked together into a 32-bit ARM processor which allows for both USB and Bluetooth output as well as the gaming hardware. The best bit is the gaming software isn’t just your standard PCs it also includes Android devices and PS3s. There is also scope to buy further adapters for Xbox Ones and 360s.
The four different sip and puff straws can be used to shift in different directions and also navigate the mouse cursor.
Further functionalities include the opportunity to use third-party voice recognition suites as many users are used to so further voice commands can be included. There is scope for this to be furthered and allow for game specific actions such as “jump” for example.
This video gives even better insight into how the controller works:
The History of the QuadStick
The QuadStick has been developed by Fred Davison. Davison developed his idea from foundations delivered by Ken Yankelevitz’s Quad Control Joystick. Davison built upon the design, adding his own tweaks and made sure to take in the opinions and feedback from quadriplegic gamers along the way.
The Kickstarter funds original plan was to fund the development of 25 units as a minimum for $10,000 but with the target exceeded Davison will be able to hone his controller and develop even more.
As we speak there are five working prototypes. Their testing has shown that a range of different games can be played using the QuadStick including Call of Duty, BioShock, Assasin’s Creed and Gran Turismo.
As more prototypes are developed more games will be able to be enjoyed and the QuadStick team will surely use their funding to ensure more quadriplegic gamers can benefit from their product.