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Okay, the Xbox 20th anniversary translucent controller looks pretty cool

Do you buy their fancy colourful pads?

Microsoft have revealed a fancy new translucent Xbox controller created to celebrate 20 years of Xboxing, and honestly I dig it. Oh I have no intention of buying a new controller just beacuse it looks nice, a smoky body with a lurid flash of green, but I'm about due a new controller anyway. Time for the periodic replacement once too many minor irritating issues accumulate, you know. Might get this one.

Microsoft say this fancy version of the usual Xbox Wireless Controller "is a fresh spin on the translucent green of the original Xbox Debug kit. The body of the controller features a translucent black finish with silver internals so you can see every detail. The nostalgic, green Xbox button brings us back to the first green Xbox logo. The iconic color can also be found on the back grips and around the hybrid D-pad."

I say: I like it. Like many old people, I fondly recall translucent electronics from the turn of the millenium. Seeing inside devices only made them more magical. Mechanical elements seemed so fascinatingly elegant in their movements, and the idea that tiny little chips and a handful of wires could power a world of dreams was astonishing. I like when people reveal how a trick works and it still amazes.

The 20th Anniversary Special Edition controller is due to launch on November 15th, 20 years after the original Xbox's American launch. It'll cost £60, though I see Microsoft's UK store and US store both already say they're out of stock. Other stores exist, too.

This is still shaped like a regular modern Xbox pad, mind. Not like the Microsoft-sanctioned recreation of the giant 'Duke' pad released in 2018.

The Xbox Aqua Shift controller.

Wait, flip, hang on, I've just seen the Aqua Shift controller they released in August and I want that too. Oh no. Decisions.

I say all this with full knowledge that I might just get the plain black controller, same as I've bought ever since my first Xbox 360 pad. Every few years, my Xbox pad dies and I buy basically the same one. Maybe this time.

What about you, gang? Do you buy into flashy pads? I realise that in the RGB-blaring world of PC peripherals, these controllers are quite tame. Though I myself have a plain black mouse and keyboard too. And no lights inside my plain black PC. No window in the side of it either. I have an aesthetic, okay.

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About the Author
Alice O'Connor avatar

Alice O'Connor

Associate Editor

Alice has been playing video games since SkiFree and writing about them since 2009, with nine years at RPS. She enjoys immersive sims, roguelikelikes, chunky revolvers, weird little spooky indies, mods, walking simulators, and finding joy in details. Alice lives, swims, and cycles in Scotland.