R.I.P., Playstation Force-Feedback

Yeah, I gotta say, I’m sad about this one. Anyone who’s looking to try to get their hands on a PS3 (egad, remember how horrible it was tyring to get a PS2 when they first came out?) is going to miss something — the force-feedback “rumble” feature on the new “Boomerang” controller.

Yep. It’s gone. Apparently Sony wouldn’t settle with a company that they had lifted some of the rumble tech from. The new controller does features this Wii-like motion sensor, meaning if you physically move the controller around in certain games, it will affect the gameplay. Sony is counting on this to placate force-feedback starved folks. I won’t be able to comment until I use one. The control, for instance, could be tilted in your hands in a certain way to give you a level of control you haven’t seen before — for instance, tilt the controller a bit to get spin on your ball in Tiger Woods PGA.

Sounds neat, but I’m going to miss the rumble. Although, you know, they could always bring it back somehow. I’m sure the PS3 hardware could transmit data to a fresh, newly-designed force-feedback controller from Sony a couple of years down the line.

For now, though, it’s the one thing I think I’m going to miss most. The Playstation 3 really looks as if it’s going to be an awesome machine (and for God’s sake, I know it’s expensive, but save your money now and buy the premium 60 gig HD version — and get yourself a service warranty, Sony is rushing these things to market, and that means flaws). Sony, as I said, is counting on us not missing the ol’ Dual Shock kickback when you fire off a few rounds in Resident Evil. I think they’re wrong about that, but I’ll live. Adjust and adapt, all that.

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