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SpecialEffect News

03 May 2017

Small movement means big improvement for James

Often it only takes a few millimetres of movement to find a way to play.

James, whose muscular dystrophy had left his fingers and hands very weak and with very limited movement, was struggling with his PS4 controller. Although he could use most of the face buttons, the joysticks were off-limits and the shoulder buttons were a real challenge.

Frankie and Cam visited him last week in East Anglia to see if there was a way for him to enjoy the Lego, wrestling and GTA games he loved.

“James’ hands sat comfortably on his controller but his fingers didn’t have the strength to reach either of the joysticks,” said Frankie. “We tried some different adaptions, and found that an Xbox 360 controller modified with light stick springs and buttons gave him the use of the left stick AND most of the buttons.”

“The only button James couldn’t reach was L1, so we replaced it with an ultralight finger switch that we fixed on top of the controller. We completed the setup by mounting a joystick by his chin to act as the right stick.”

Thanks to the ingenuity of our occupational therapists, these few tiny movements of James’ fingers and chin mean that he’s rediscovering the magic of gaming. He’s over the moon!

Below: Concentrating on taking out the Stormtroopers - James (minus his chin joystick) playing Lego Star Wars.

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