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Today I learned about these fantastic DIY mods that make modern gamepads one-handed

Today I learned about these fantastic DIY mods that make modern gamepads one-handed


If you need to play one-handed for accessibility or other reasons, YouTuber Akaki Kuumeri’s projects cover a range of PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo controllers.

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A controller with the one-handed mod installed.
The mods put the gamepad’s controls within reach of one hand.
Image: Akaki Kuumeri

If you need to use a modern games controller with just one hand rather than two, then why not give Akaki Kuumeri’s 3D-printed mods a try? We’ve written about the YouTuber’s previous projects to add joysticks and throttles to controllers, but more recently, Kuumeri has created a range of one-handed controller mods, which we spotted via this Reddit post and could be helpful if you or someone you know has accessibility needs that prevent them from using both hands with a traditionally two-handed gamepad.

Kuumeri’s videos about the mods date back to early 2022. At the time, Microsoft was the only major console manufacturer to have announced a first-party accessibility controller. “Microsoft has the Xbox Adaptive Controller, and Copilot mode, which are an amazing contribution for accessible gaming (albeit quite expensive),” Kuumeri told IGN in January 2022 after the release of the initial DualSense mod. “Switch has remappable buttons, and Joy-Cons can be held in a few different ways. Sony’s PlayStation does nothing for accessibility.” 

Rather than selling gamers an entirely new input device, Kuumeri’s 3D-printed mods attach to an existing gamepad and use a series of levers to effectively place its inputs — including both face and shoulder buttons as well as triggers — within reach of one hand. The exception is the controller’s second analog stick, which can be moved by pushing a module on the rear of the controller against a surface like a table or the top of your leg. (It makes way more sense once you see it in action.) As well as the PS5’s DualSense, there are also mods available for the PS4’s controller as well as the Xbox One, Xbox Series S and X, and Nintendo Switch Joy-Con.

AbleGamers, an American nonprofit that works to improve accessibility in video games, currently recommends Kuumeri’s designs as a 3D-printed solution for people looking for a one-handed gaming option. It cites a number of conditions, including hemiparesis and severe arthritis, as potential reasons for needing to play games with just one hand and also lists a number of off-the-shelf options as alternatives to the 3D-printed approach.

Since Kuumeri started work on this project, Sony has announced an accessibility-focused PlayStation controller of its own. The device, subsequently named the Access controller, is now due to go on sale in the US on December 6th for $89.99

Nevertheless, the YouTuber’s designs still have their advantages. They’re available today, for starters, and the PlayStation versions are available for Akaki Controllers for $73 — less than the forthcoming Access controller. And if you know your way around a 3D printer, Kuumeri has published the designs online for people to produce themselves. Finally, Kuumeri’s designs are also available via The Controller Project, which provides cheap or free controller modifications to gamers with disabilities or limb differences. Here’s an FAQ on how the request process works.