Along with a generous donation to LGBTQIA+ nonprofits, clothing featuring flag designs, and various digital rewards, Microsoft is offering a Pride 2021 Xbox wireless controller, a lovely rainbow-sporting custom gamepad that’ll only be available to select influencers and members of the media.
Sporting bright red, yellow, blue, and green face buttons and a design inspired by the various LGBTQIA+ flags adopted by the community, the Pride 2021 Xbox wireless controller is an eye-catching addition to the rather tame official Xbox Series X/S controller lineup, which only recently discovered neon green. Taking the design a step further, the battery pack sports the words “Show Your Pride On Every Side.”
“Team Xbox has designed the Pride 2021 Xbox Wireless Controller with and for LGBTQIA+ people to give visibility to communities that have often been overlooked and neglected,” reads the post on Xbox Wire announcing the controller. “It combines the flags of various LGBTQIA+ communities in an interwoven energetic way, creating a sense of unity, and evoking both technology and the modern age.”
Then comes the bad news. “To celebrate, Team Xbox will share these controllers with key influencers and media in the U.S. and internationally.”
Well, dammit. I would gladly pay $60 to $70 for a controller sporting this design, especially if some percentage of the sale went to charities supporting the LGBTQIA+ community. I appreciate that a similar design is up for sale as a skin for Microsoft Surface devices, but I do not own a Surface. I do own several Xboxes, PCs, and a few mobile devices that could use a stunning new controller, though.
But I get it. Nothing says “inclusivity” like a product only available as a free gift to influencers and members of the media. That way everyone gets to enjoy the controller in videos, articles like this one, and eventually, eBay.