Sony's Weird "Break-Apart" Controller May Actually Become A Thing

Though not from Sony. Despite reportedly toying with the idea back in 2008, the platform holder has to date never followed through with the idea of a controller that can break apart into two pieces.

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In 2013, third-party peripheral manufacturer Mad Genius wants to. It's launching a Kickstarter campaign for its pad, which in addition to serving as a standard pad, can also be broken apart and used as a PlayStation Move-ish controller.

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You can see a demonstration video above.

Just when you thought the days of waggle and motion were over!

Mad Genius [Site, via The Verge]

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DISCUSSION

I never asked for this.

I think Gabe summed up quite nicely how arbitrary motion controls are inefficient.

Motion just seems to be a way of [thinking] of your body as a set of communication channels. Your hands, and your wrist muscles, and your fingers are actually your highest bandwidth — so to trying to talk to a game with your arms is essentially saying "oh we’re going to stop using ethernet and go back to 300 baud dial-up." Maybe there are other ways to think of that. There’s more engagement when you’re using larger skeletal muscles, but whenever we go down [that path] we sort of come away unconvinced.

Being able to map simple commands on to clumsy motion gestures isn't really helping anyone. Even from an immersion perspective it's not going to be a big deal until VR tech is refined and affordable. There's also the fact that the gestures are the initiation, rather than starting the gesture being the initiation. So when she makes a "jab" gesture, the character on screen can only at-best start the jab after she has finished the full motion. So it's more like your character is always playing catch-up with you.

Having the ability to map lots of extra commands to arbitrary gestures isn't useful when the games are already designed with the finite inputs of the controller in mind.

tl;dr, I don't see any market for this currently but it's a fun little project I guess. Razer's Hydra has already given the motion control research community a pretty accurate and relatively inexpensive toy to play with though. (the best applications of which I've seen are relating to 3D modeling and sculpting tools combined with 3D monitors rather than games.)