When Sony first revealed details on its upcoming PlayStation 5 console, one of the areas the console manufacturer chose to focus on was its new controller. With a new form of haptic feedback and adaptive triggers, it was clear that Sony was putting a lot of thought into how it could evolve the feeling of playing a game. The company has now officially shown off its first piece of PlayStation 5 hardware – the DualSense – replacing its DualShock moniker and making it clear that Sony is taking a new step into what they deem to be the future of gaming.
Announced on its blog, PlayStation have officially shown off its new DualSense controller. While the Dualshock 1 through 4 look relatively familial, the new DualSense controller has opted for a much more striking design. According to Sony, this new controller “will captivate more of your senses as you interact with the virtual worlds in PS5 games. The features of DualSense, along with PS5’s Tempest 3D AudioTech, will deliver a new feeling of immersion to players.”
The reason for this radical departure in design is due to the fact that in Sony’s eyes “the sense of touch within gameplay, much like audio, hasn’t been a big focus for many games”. The company is attempting to remedy this through “haptic feedback, which adds a variety of powerful sensations you’ll feel when you play, such as the slow grittiness of driving a car through mud,” as well as adding “adaptive triggers into the L2 and R2 buttons of DualSense so you can truly feel the tension of your actions, like when drawing a bow to shoot an arrow.”
Due to these feature decisions, the company needed to evolve its design in order to utilise these new functionalities to its maximum. Some of the ways in which this was done is through “chang[ing] the angle of the hand triggers and also ma[king] some subtle updates to the grip” alongside other evolutions including an overall increase in the roundedness of the controller in order to maximise the number of contact points that the hardware makes with the player’s hands.
Other feature changes with the new DualSense is the removal of the Share button. In its stead is a new ‘Create’ button – though few details have been provided regarding its functionality. Sony have also added a microphone to the controller, allowing players to chat with teammates without the need for a headset and dedicated microphone.
The DualSense controller is said to be the result of “several concepts and hundreds of mockups”. The goal for Sony is “to give gamers the feeling of being transported into the game world as soon as they open the box,” wanting “gamers to feel like the controller is an extension of themselves when they’re playing – so much so that they forget that it’s even in their hands!”
Sony is clearly attempting to change the way we play games, going far beyond expected upgrades such as simple power increases and added teraflops. Many of the announcements made so far have proven that this is where their priorities lie. If the rest of the PlayStation 5 is as radically different as the new DualSense controller, then the next generation of PlayStation will certainly be an interesting one.
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KitGuru says: What do you think of the DualSense controller? Do you agree with Sony that controllers have remained too stagnant? What’s your favourite announced feature of the DualSense controller? Let us know down below.