Sunday, March 24, 2013

PS4's Controller Will Change with Your Mood

The Playstation 4 still has a lot of momentum after its announcement on Feb 20th, but only the controller was shown. Simply put; too many people focused on the invisible console and ignored the magic of the controller. At first glance it's obvious that the DualShock 4′s light bar will be used as a built-in Move controller working in tandem with the new camera peripheral for PS4, but there is more than meets the eye.

Scott Rohde, Senior VP Sony World Wide Studios, jumped onto the PlayStation Blog this past week and talked about a new way that games might use the light bar and a dark room to influence the player’s mood while gaming.

Playing games in the dark versus a well lit room depends heavily on the game being played. With Move and Kinect gaming, well lit areas are ideal for the cameras. What playing in the dark does for other games is allow it to immerse the player into the game by blacking out the real world around the tv. Who would have thought that the light bar on the new DualShock 4 could be used to color that dark space in front of the player to influence things like their mood while gaming. Rohde paints this picture pretty well:

"A lot of gamers, myself included, like to play in some dimly lit rooms. And when you’re playing a game and the whole area around you changes color slightly based on what that light bar is doing, it’s not something you’re staring at and your expecting, but it changes your mood and it changes the way you feel when, whatever it is, when you fire a button, when you step into an area where you are in a cold blue area – think about Journey. You’re in a cold blue area, and then you move into more of an orangey earth tone – a warm area. And that controller is coming with you.

When the whole room around you is sort of suddenly changing from the blues and greens into the oranges and yellows, you might not really even know what’s happening, but your whole sense of immersion is definitely greater. It’s a really good thing. I get really excited about that color bar."

Imagine an underwater level in Uncharted or Tomb Raider create an ambient blue to glow before you. Then coming out of the water and engaging in all sorts of explosions and gun play while the light bar flashes and pops all sorts of reds and oranges, effectively surrounding you in the warm light of the in-game explosions.

In addition to this light show experience, the new speaker in the DualShock 4 will bring near field audio to the player (similar the the Wii remote). Gunshots you fire can echo from the controller, water effects could sooth your ears, or small audio bits could help you on your way through campaigns, and the surround sound effect could allow you to hear what's behind your character.



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