Remember When Sony Told Us Tilt Controls Were the Next Big Thing?
Man, were they wrong! Or rather, their implementation of motion sensitive controls was so far from what people wanted in games. After all, despite having a massively mediocre library of games, the Wii is still selling like it’s going out of style. But Sony knew they were lame all along. They just decided to try and piss on our leg and tell us it’s raining, instead of admitting the truth – they were in the middle of a lawsuit over the DualShock’s vibration functionality and weren’t able to ship the controller with said function. Just over a year after the PlayStation 3’s release, we have in our hands, the DualShock 3. AKA, the controller that should have shipped with the PS3 to begin with.
Admittedly, there were a couple cool implementations of the SIXAXIS‘ tile functionality. Heavenly Sword being one of them. Where you had the ability to hurl objects (or bodies!), fire arrows, or launch cannon balls in slow motion, while guiding their trajectory in real time by tilting the controller. That wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun or satisfying with an analog stick. Then again, there was Lair. Arguably, one of the most anticipated exclusive titles released in the first year. It ended up averaging 56% mostly due to an absolutely awful control scheme which was entirely based on the title controls of the SIXAXIS. Thankfully, an analog stick based control scheme has been added to the game via an add-on pack. I’m likely going to pick this game up now and give it a go. Considering I can pick it up used for about $20, why not?
Enough talk of the crap that was. Let’s just try and pretend the SIXAXIS never happened, shall we? Sony has decided to go that route and confirmed that they’ve discontinued the SIXAXIS all together. The DualShock 3 is here, and it’s great! Yes, it rumbles, and the majority of the bigger titles are already compatible. But there are also some minor differences that make it a better controller overall. For one, it’s a lot heavier than the SIXAXIS. While you might think a super light-weight controller would be better, it’s not. The SIXAXIS is too light, which makes it feel cheap and flimsy. Another super minor detail that pleased me, is the surface no longer being translucent. For whatever reason, you can partially see through the SIXAXIS, which cheapened its presentation even further in my eyes.
I’ve been reading a lot of complaints over the price of the DualShock 3 ($54.99), which is kind of surprising. It’s only $5 more than the SIXAXIS was listed at, and it’s still the best value of the current gen consoles. Xbox 360’s wireless controller is $49.99, and the combined Wii Remote and Nunchuk are $50. But wait, that’s $5 less than the DualShock 3. Yes, yes it is. But the DualShock 3 doesn’t require any additional batteries or battery packs to power it. You plug it into the PS3 via a USB cable and it charges. So while you pay $5 more up front, you save in the long run by not having to pay for batteries for the lifespan of the console, or battery packs and charging cables/stations.