Our beloved industry's competitive streak can often have us forget the pure joy that gaming can bring, and if you're in one of those moments, then get ready to be reminded, with easily the prettiest and most heartfelt smile you'll see this year.
We're no strangers to heated debates on PlayStation 4 vs. Xbox One or PC versus consoles, which is perfectly normal, but there are times when we're reminded of just how little it matters as long as you get to play and have fun. This is one of those times.
Thanks to Microsoft's Adaptive Controller, Ava Steel finally got the chance to play games like all her friends. As you can see from the video, Ava is running The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on Nintendo Switch, finally unhindered by her disability in what every living thing on our blue dot loves to do - play.
And boy did she say everything with that smile, which could easily power a country, nay, a planet, if only joy could be converted to electricity. That said, no electricity or any other valuables we can think of at the moment can match the infectious nature of a child's joy.
Ava's father Rory Steel said, "So rare in this day and age to see big corporations release this type gold to the world without boundaries. Love Halo love Zelda and love my PSVR. Now so will my daughter and son thanks to Microsoft XAC."
Back when Bill Gates was asked about improving accessibility in a Reddit AMA, he responded, "I would be glad to pass along your thoughts on this to the right person at Microsoft - they care a lot about getting accessibility right." And boy did he raise it, and even Phil Spencer recently tweeted that the smile was more than worth it. Profitability really isn't everything, not always.
One of BotW's voice actors replied to the post as well, asking how he can help, and we dearly hope that this cascades into increased global focus on accessibility. Because sure, we'll all get back to our PC vs. console debates in a few days but don't ever forget that Ava's smile is the same smile that keeps us coming back to our favourite pastime.
To bluntly steal one of the comments (which I can't seem to find right now) - "and THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is what gaming is all about".