We have been working with Games Britannia for a few years now, and one of our successful workshops has been based around designing an accessible controller.

The Picade board was our starting point in previous years, allowing children to design individual buttons, and connect them to a board we made in order to play games on Retropie. Now, with the Player X, we could make a similar board that could be used by any device that recognises a USB controller.

This year we used Player X boards with the university laptops, and also with the main computer hooked up to a projector.

Cardboard controller being used to play online games

The workshop consisted of a look at commercially available controllers, the basics of how a button works, and design considerations. We then made and tested prototype controllers and looked at how they could be further developed into a durable product.

Foot controller

Design considerations

The feedback wasn't too bad...

Feedback says "It was well planned. The staff were amazing and everyone had fun."

A full workshop support package is here for download - if you use it we'd love to hear about it. Curriculum links to Product Design, Graphics, Science and Computing are included.

You can follow Games Britannia on twitter, which is where the first look at the activities usually happens. Workshops are bookable and free to attend. It is a two-day festival of workshops and exhibits based around the games industry, and aimed at school children. It is always on two consecutive school days in term-time to make it easy to bring groups for a visit.