The PlayStation 5’s (PS5) DualSense controller marks a huge departure from the design Sony has stuck with the classic DualShock controllers. Not only is it bigger, but it is also wider, taller and heavier than the previous generation’s DualShock 4.
On the outside, you get USB-C port on the back for charging, a built-in microphone/ speaker slot and an aux port for external headsets. But beyond the physical changes made to the controller, Sony elected not simply call it the DualShock 5 because the Japanese tech giant aims to deliver a more immersive feel to games via the DualSense’s new haptic feedback and adaptive triggers.
The Verge’s Tom Warren recently wrote about his experience of using the DualSense controller while playing Astro’s Playroom, a tech demo that comes bundled with the PS5. On a whole, he was quite impressed at the next-gen innovations Sony has implemented in the controller.
According to him, the DualSense’s haptic feedback allows players to “feel” like they are within the environment within Astro’s Playroom. In case you don’t know, haptic feedback refers to an advanced kind of vibration that simulates the feel of different materials and movements.
Warren in the video above how DualSense controller simulates the feeling of walking on sand or the force of wind blowing against you in a sand storm. Sony has long touted the adaptive triggers since the DualSense was first revealed in April. Sony’ Hideaki Nishino told Polygon that the triggers can deliver the sensation of “driving a car through mud” of the tension of “drawing a bow to shoot an arrow”.
While it is difficult imagine what it feels like, Twitter user @ErikFossum showed just how the triggers worked. He recorded a short video showing how the adaptive triggers actually provide feedback and “fight back” against you.
The Verge’s Warren praised the new DualSense controller describing it as being better than the haptics found on the Nintendo Switch, Xbox controller or even the great haptic feedback found on modern smartphones. To him, the adaptive triggers for the PS5’s controller could change the way games feel.
A look inside the DualSense controller
So, what makes the DualSense controller so special? Well, the answer lies within and Polygon spotted a teardown video by YouTube channel TronicsFix that shows how a special geared motor allows the adaptive triggers to provide such realistic tension.
The video shows how the motor generates tension and resistance for the triggers when it is powered up but feel like regular triggers when it is turned off.
At the moment, Astro’s Playroom offers the best demonstration of the controller but naturally, other games are set to take advantage of the DualSense controller’s technology. This includes the popular battle royale game Fortnite, which is set to use the haptic feedback in the DualSense to immerse players in the game by making them “feel” that they are holding different weapons.
Even in the upcoming basketball game NBA 2K21, the adaptive triggers will change so when a basketball player on screen grows tired, there will be more resistance on the sprint trigger, forcing players to make a player swap. Another exclusive game, Deathloop is also said to use adaptive triggers to make each weapon feel unique. In addition, the triggers will lock up should a gun get jammed in the game.
What do you think about the cool enhancements made to the DualSense controller? Would this tempt you to buy Sony’s next-generation console? While we may have to wait until 2021 for the official launch of the PS5 in Malaysia, we can still admire the amazing tech packed into the latest PlayStation controller that could shape the future of games.