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Platform: PS3
Category: Hardware

Since the PS3 was unveiled many pundits of the system have complained about this and that, however what has been clear was that many people were very disappointed with the lack of vibration in the PS3’s new SIXAXIS controller. There have been many theories as to why this was the case. Some blamed the legal dispute between Immersion Technologies and Sony while others believed that it couldn’t be done due to the motion sensing nature of the controller. Well whatever the reason the vibrationless controller sure has taken a beating.

Sony seems to be listening to its fanbase however and during the Tokyo Game Show in 2007 they announced that they would be releasing an updated controller to the masses, but this time with rumble support. Aptly titled the DUALSHOCK 3, Sony has kept the controllers SIXAXIS support while adding the much missed vibration feature. Sony was kind enough to send us the DUALSHOCK 3 for our PS3 and after spending sometime with it I must say that the vibration feature was definitely missed and it is great to see it back.

The first thing I noticed when pulling the new black DUALSHOCK out of the packaging was how similar in weight it felt to the original SIXAXIS. There is not as much difference as I thought there would be. Don’t get me wrong, there is a difference but given that there are some new motors inside the controller it is definitely not as heavy as I expected. This is pretty much the only difference that I noted between the DUALSHOCK 3 and the original SIXAXIS controller. It should be noted that the controller performs exactly the same as the original controller, including all motion-sensing capabilities.

I had the chance to take the controller for a spin on a few games. The first game I played was Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction. Right off the hop I was taken back and I almost jumped out of my seat by the rumble support. It was noticeable off the get go. I have to say that I actually enjoyed the game even more with the support of the DUALSHOCK 3, and that is surprising given how much I already enjoyed the game. I also had a chance to borrow one of our other reviewer’s copy of MLB 08: The Show. Upon playing a couple of innings of some good ol’ baseball it dawned on me how much a sports game can actually be impacted by rumble. And given how good this game is already, the added functionality of something as simple as vibration makes this even a more immersive sports title. The third title I took a spin with using the DUALSHOCK 3 was the PLAYSTATION Network title Pain. I was amazed with how much vibration I actually did feel. It was almost like I felt the pain as our hero was thrusted about midair only to hit so many objects found in the cityscape in front of him. I actually chuckled quite a few when hitting a building, vehicle, billboard or patio furniture. It was quite impressive indeed.

For those wondering what titles support the new DUALSHOCK 3, the following is a list of such:

- SCEA - Formula One Championship Edition* (PS3)
- SCEA - MotorStorm* (PS3)
- SCEA - Gran Turismo 5 Prologue (PS3)
- SCEA - High Velocity Bowling (PSN)
- SCEA - MLB 08: The Show (PS3)
- SCEA - Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune (PS3)
- SCEA - Resistance: Fall of Man* (PS3)
- SCEA - Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction (PS3)
- SCEA - Go! Sports Ski* (PSN)
- SCEA - Folklore* (PS3)
- SCEA - Heavenly Sword* (PS3)
- SCEA - Warhawk* (PSN / PS3)
- SCEA - Super Stardust HD* (PSN)
- SCEA - Snakeball (PSN)
- SCEA - Toy Home (PSN)
- SCEA - PSOne Emulation (PSN)
- SCEA - Piyotama (PSN)
- SCEA - PixelJunk Monsters (PSN)
- SCEA - Blast Factor* (PSN)
- Sega - Condemned 2: Bloodshot (PS3)
- Ubisoft - Lost: Via Domus (PS3)
- Ubisoft - Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Vegas 2* (PS3)
- EA - Burnout Paradise (PS3)
- KOEI - Dynasty Warriors 6 (PS3)
- Capcom - Devil May Cry 4 (PS3)
- Atari - Dragon Ball Z Burst Limit (PS3)
- Disney Interactive - Turok (PS3)
- Sierra Games - TimeShift (PS3)

Those titles marked with an asterix (*) will be given functionality through the PLAYSTION Network. If your PS3 is not connected to the internet you can search Sony’s Playstion Knowledge Center for further information on adding rumble functionality to the PS3 titles marked with an asterix (*). Go to www.us.playstation.com/PS3 for more information of future titles and the need for downloading a patch for games that may require it.

At the end of the day I just have to tell anyone who owns a PS3 to run down to your local videogame store and pick up one of these new DUALSHOCK 3 controllers. It is pretty much a given being that the rumble support brings to life older games that you may already own and it will assist in fully immersing you in the newer games that are due to come out. For future games look for a DUALSHOCK 3 Compatible logo on the box to see if a new release does indeed support this new controller.


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