Sony Wants To Make a PS3 Controller That Gets Hot Or Cold

OK. My mind is blown. Sony published a patent this week for a video game controller that heats up or cools down as you're playing a game. It sounds kind of dangerous. And it sounds kind of awesome.

You can read the patent application here and gawk at all the patent imagery, but let me summarize some of the coolest (sorry) hottest (still sorry) ideas in the patent. They're written in patent-ese, but you won't have trouble figuring them out. Basically, the Move wand has bands around it that get hotter or colder depending on things that happen in a PS3 game or application. For example...

Controller Gets Hotter As Your Gun Overheats

In one embodiment, a user controls the firing of a weapon in a video game. As the weapon is repeatedly fired, the weapon may heat up and the controller may exhibit increasing heat feedback to communicate this fact to the user. At a certain point, the weapon may become inoperable, and the user must then wait for the weapon to cool off before firing the weapon again.

This can likewise be indicated to the user by reducing the level of heat feedback or actively cooling the controller. It will aos be noted that the controller amy exhibit lighted feedback in conjunction with the thermal feedback. For example, as the weapon heats up, the controller light may change from a cooler colour to a warmer colour, such as from blue or green to orange or red. Similarly, when the weapon cools down, the colour exhibited may revert to the cooler colour.

Controller Gets Hotter If An Enemy Hits You With A Fireball

In one embodiment, the user may control a character engaged in battle. When the character is hit by enemy fire or an explosion or the damaging-causing incident, the controller may exhibit a thermal grill illusion. In e embodiment, a thermal grill illusion is provided at the controller when the user's character receives an electric shock.

Controller Gets Hotter Or Colder As You're Searching For Something

In one embodiment, a user utilises a controller to discover the presence of objects that are not visible on screen or otherwise known to the user. The user maneuvers the controller about his or her interactive environment, and receives thermal feedback, such as heating or cooling, indicating the presence of an object.

When Combined With A Biometric Sensor, The Controller Cools Your Sweaty Hands

In one embodiment, when the interactive application detects a decrease in galvanic skin resistance (GSR), possibly indicating that the user's hands are sweating, then the interactive application could initiate a cooling feedback at the controller.

I've asked Sony PR if this is a real thing that's going to come to market. I'll update if they have comment.

Thanks to friend of Kotaku James Pikover for the tip. Oh, and Sony, please make this. UPDATE: A rep says they have nothing to share. Bummer.

United States Application US20120258800 [Free Patents Online]


    Of course the Japanese will make a sex game out of it.

      Hahaha! So true!

    I'd like a controller that sucks away my hand sweat while gaming lol

      Not just cools it I forgot too add, would make for chilly sweaty hands!

    That's actually a cool idea!

    Interesting, although I'm curious as to how they'd manage the cooling part. Heat, easy enough, although a broken controller could be a lawsuit waiting to happen.

    The main problem I can see is it'd eat away at battery life like crazy. I wouldn't fancy having to plug in my dualshock every 3 hours just for an effect.

    This is one reason why Sony is important to keep around - they may copy an idea, but they continually iterate and innovate from the base idea. The Move as it is now is already far superior to the Wiimote.

    Not entirely viable, due to the increae in energy consumption.. not to mention for what it would retail

    Send 3 rovers to Mars but no one believes Sony can make this controller?


      Can make this controller? Sure.

      Can make it for a reasonable price? You can't buy Martian rovers for $69 at JB...

    I don't see this as a very versatile feature for game design. its function is redundant when we already have something like Rumble which can already determine/simulate the binary states of 'hot' and 'cold' simply by rumbling or not.

    Curiously, how do you apply this to game design? Other than the trivial effect of simulating an overheating gun which like I said, many games already do use Rumble to do that, or atleast can.

    I guess what I'm saying is, anything this can do, Rumble can do. I think introducing a 'L4' and 'R4' buttons would be more beneficial to game design, just to illustrate a point.

    Last edited 13/10/12 9:47 pm

      It could be used to match the weather in the game

    Condensation issues.

    Why can't sony let PS Move die

    I can't see it in the patent, but surely it's designed this way to simulate pain, which I'm all for...

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