Why are there so few baby controllers?

There are already children’s consoles, but the choice is rather simple.

“Dad, can you please do this to me?” My daughter looks at me sadly and grabs the console. Situations like this have been happening more and more in my house in the past few weeks. Because just at the time when I wanted to get my five-year-old offspring a little more excited about video games, I increasingly ran into an obstacle I hadn’t necessarily anticipated before—because I simply hadn’t thought of it beforehand.

It is easy to name this problem. Since it doesn’t matter which console – whether it’s PS5, Xbox Series X, or Nintendo Switch – I play with it, the consoles are just too big for their kids’ sensitive hands! So it can’t hold the pads properly, especially in situations that require multiple inputs on either side of the console – for example, pressing forward on the analog stick and jumping at the same time in a Paw Patrol Mighty Pups becomes a frustrating endeavor.

Because she knows cognitively what to do, but can’t do it physically due to the console’s very large dimensions. And this only leads to the question described at the beginning and a little later to the frustrating termination, because she would like to do it all herself.

Tobias Felten

Toby has been an editor at GamePro since 2009. His favorite genres are shooting games and racing games, and apart from video games, games are his big passion. He loves soccer and billiards and is constantly expanding his board game collection. By the way, it has nothing to do with the beer brand of the same name. Unfortunately.

The selection is still too small

That’s why I’ve asked myself the question several times recently: Why are there so few baby controllers? Because they are already giving. A search on Amazon, for example, provides some isolated results, which, according to reviews, are also successful. However, the small choice surprises me, because even in the local Media Markt or Saturn, there are only “life-size” consoles on the accessory shelves. So isn’t there a huge demand for baby consoles? To be honest, I can’t imagine that, after all, more and more young people are playing, so there must be a need for kid-friendly controls.

Especially with the Switch, I find it disappointing that there is no dedicated first-party input device for the little ones. Sure, the Joy-Con is pretty small, but it’s also a little weak. I’d rather put something like Microsoft’s Adaptive Console in mind here. Fully modular, with large buttons and input options that make it easy for kids to coordinate. Especially since Nintendo has given away some special games “Easy Modes” that require very little input. The smart controls in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe are one example that, as a parent, I like:

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe: As a dad, there's one feature I've been particularly fond of


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But even here, my daughter sometimes finds it difficult to hold the console in a way that is comfortable for her. And that also frustrates me as a father, because I know things actually have to be better.

The possibility of “growing” modular controllers?

Just so as not to be misunderstood: Under no circumstances would I require console manufacturers to put the child console in the box with their own system by default. But I wish there was at least a suitably designed “made in-house” pad for each of the consoles.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that they have to be only tiny copies of regular consoles, which may again be very small at some point. I also realize that every child is different and it would be difficult to present ‘average child control’. But what speaks against a “growing” console? In other words, a modular system that can then be expanded little by little according to age. With some baby gadgets, like high chairs, this has been around for a long time and would at least be a good idea for the hardware. Yes, I mean you, dear third parties!

I admit, of course I’m talking about a very frustrated father and if you don’t have kids, you’ll probably see this “problem” as a trifle. But almost anyone who has seen how children’s eyes light up when they create something new on their own will almost certainly support my desire for more baby controls.

How about you: Are your kids better at handling standard controls?

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