Details and images of the PlayStation 5 controller have been released, demonstrating a somewhat more futuristic take on the usual DualShock controller.
Known as a DualSense controller, the wireless controller offers a fair few tweaks to the existing format, and is also charged via USB-C.
Most notably, there's now haptic feedback enhancing the sensations one feels via vibrations in their hands. In a statement, Hideaki Nishino, senior VP of Platform Planning & Management, explained how haptic feedback will '[add] a variety of powerful sensations you’ll feel when you play, such as the slow grittiness of driving a car through mud.' So far, so typical controller-ish.
But there will also be adaptive triggers which allow developers to play around with tension in a bid to simulate in-game activities more so than simply pressing a button. The press release used the example of the precision involved in drawing the string on a bow. That's the main reason behind the DualSense name, but there's also the matter of the system's Tempest 3D AudioTech which we're guessing will play quite a fundamental role in providing a more immersive experience.
Replacing the previous PlayStation 4's controller's Share button will now be a 'Create' button. No specific details have been released on this one but it's fairly obvious that this is going to allow players to share screenshots and video clips. We're assuming it'll build on the success of its predecessor and throw in some more advanced video editing facilities than before.
There's also a built-in microphone for talking with minimal effort and no need for a headset. Let's hope it's simple enough to switch off for when you don't want people hearing you swear under your breath repeatedly.
As you can see in the image, looks wise, this controller is a bit different from past PlayStation controllers in that it uses a two-toned design. Predominantly white with a black second half, it looks rather more eye catching than usual. No doubt other colour schemes will be made available further down the line.
Marketing speak aside, and it's clear the PlayStation 5 controller is a lot like the previous one, only not. A little more rounded around the edges and with some refinements in place, the idea seems to be to be both familiar yet sufficiently different to grab attention for the next-generation. The L2 and R2 buttons still rest a little too far on the back for comfort when you're placing the controller on a surface for a moment but other than that, it looks fairly reasonably well designed.
Of course, we really need to get our hands on it to know for sure. In theory, the PlayStation 5 is still launching later this year. We'd expect to see adaptors released around that same time to allow for the use of the controller on other devices like PCs or tablets.
April 12 2021 | 14:00