PS5 Dev: DualSense Haptic Feedback Is "Magical"

While a lot of emphasis is placed on the graphics of next-gen consoles, there are many other innovations that promise to help make your gaming experience much more immersive. Sound design and replication are getting an upgrade with next-gen tech, as well as haptic feedback on the DualSense controller—the combination of which one PS5 dev called “magical.”

Haptic feedback (also known as kinaesthetic communication or “3D touch”) has largely been relegated to basic vibrations on console controllers up to this point. The technology hasn’t dramatically changed on consoles since Nintendo introduced the Rumble Pack for the N64 in 1997. This console generation, however, will see more responsive and dynamic feedback.

Nicolas Doucet, is the director of Astro’s Playroom, also helped to develop the DualSense controller. That’s important to remember because every PS5 will come pre-loaded with Astro’s Playroom, which serves (in part) to show off the DualSense controller’s full capabilities. Speaking in an interview, Doucet said that Astro’s Playroom was designed from the ground up based on demonstrations of different elements of the controller.

“Each tech demo was made into a game, so it became a format like a collection of mini-games. But this time, I thought that if I packed it into one experience as much as possible, it would be richer.” He also talked about how, as part of a package, the DualSense can create truly immersive environments, “For example, in a sandstorm, you can feel the wind and sand, and using the speakers at the same time [it] creates a magical effect.”

Doucet also believes that things like motion sensors and audio systems are important to player immersion and he said that he would like to see where he and his team can take these elements in the future. For now, though, the adaptive triggers and haptic feedback of the DualSense means that you will be able to “feel” different objects and environments on the PS5. That is to say that the trigger will feel different depending on what you’re doing.

Pulling the trigger of a gun in Black Ops Cold War, for example, will no longer feel the same as climbing a wall, or shooting webs at Electro when you’re playing Spider-Man. The PS5 launches on November 12 in North America and Japan and November 19 for the rest of the world, so you won’t have long to wait until you can feel the difference yourself.

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