The Xbox One Has... Gun Triggers?

The Xbox One has awesome new rumbling triggers, which can offer feedback. Nick Robinson over at Unwinnable has some issues with this: it's now possible for the triggers to resemble, you know, real triggers. Gun triggers.

And what happens when we can't say pulling a trigger on a game is nothing like pulling a trigger in real life anymore?

Trigger warning [Unwinnable]


    Yes, because this is the only thing holding back our sense of distinction between the virtual and the real.

      Could not have been said better!

    As the first comment after that article says, what about Time Crisis? That was a gun with a realistic trigger and a moving slide when you fired so you actually got recoil. It's far more realistic than a pressured trigger on a pad and society has not yet crumbled. And the parts that have crumbled haven't actually been proven to have been caused by video games in any way.

      And here I was thinking that the global financial collapse was caused by game developers!

    Gasp, you're right! Never again will I be able to hold my plastic, clicky, game controller and tell whether or not I am about to end someone's life. The weight of all my decisions are coming crashing down on me. Only now, at the end, do I see the error of my ways... Or wait, maybe there's no basis to this.

    At this point the Xbox one can do nothing right in the eyes of these 'new media' video game writers. Getting quite tiresome to read.

      Much like another console which launched late last year..... hmmmmm

    Good lord, when will this stupidity stop? Reality check: it's still just a video game regardless of the level of realism. Those of us with a sound mental state understand this fact and will always be able to separate video games from reality. If a person actually becomes traumatised by a VR headset, realistic pixels and a plastic trigger, clearly they don't have a sound mental state or the maturity to be playing a GAME in the first place. That "journalist" clearly hasn't thought this through or should just begin looking at a different career path.

    No science to back up his opinion, just baseless assumptions. When all is said and done, video games will always be JUST GAMES! No video game is going to transform a regular, sane person into a blood thirsty killer either. Thus far the science has agreed with this. Video games have been getting more and more realistic for the last 25+ years, yet where is the increase in a violent society?

    I'm pretty sure the Vikings didn't play video games......or Hitler....or Saddam....or Stalin...Need I go on? Lets just use common sense, duh.

      I beg to differ. The Vikings played "Invasion, 13th Century Edition", Hitler played an early version of "Paint Academy" which kept rejecting him thus leading to him trying his hand on "Fascism! A game of conquest". Saddam played "Missile Defense" and was sorta good at it. He tried his hand at Battlezone but sucked at it a lot. Stalin played a lot of Starcraft and unbeknownst to many people, he is actually part Korean which explains his zerg tactics in WWII.

      Actually Saddam was an avid gamer. He used to play CS and spawn camp on Ts... WITH THE BOMB!

    Admittedly the closest i've ever gotten to firing a gun was an airsoft, but I would assume that the majority of the feedback does not come from the trigger but the knockback of the gun itself.

    This is even before you go into the argument that aiming with an analogue stick is not the same as aiming with a gun

    If there's another thing that creates more immersion in a game, go for it. If a console gaming trigger makes you nervous over what could be your falling that side of the 'video games make violent people' argument. A shooter based on real world places, situations, weapons. Then yes I want it to look accurate, sound accurate and if the technology permits, feel accurate. Should it be based on future or fantasy then I applaud the guy who can think up ways to make us feel more impact for our actions. This is just a minor extension of force feedback, an ingenious one I believe.

    Last edited 26/05/13 1:09 pm

    But then again I only play PC so until they make a mouse with real trigger feel... Which actually I reckon would be cool

      it's already been done methinks, not with the rumble mind you but definitely a trigger shaped mouse.

    It should also be noted that the new triggers rumble... the don't offer scalable resistance.

    I don't know about anyone else... but the few times I've fired rifles or pistols I wouldn't have said the triggers rumble.

      While trying out the new controller in Redmond, my Revision3 coworker Adam Sessler got to try out a few impulse trigger demos ... which inspired him to ask the Microsoft rep point-blank if the triggers are capable of providing not just subtle vibration but actual resistance (think force feedback in a racing wheel). The response he got: “It’s possible.”
      If this is accurate then it sounds like they might be able to offer resistance, not just rumble. Although I would wait for a hands on example of it before I believed it

        They asked Jeff Gerstmann about it on the Bombcast, he said he'd had it from one of the MS tech guys.

    If you actually read the full article it is quite interesting and the guy makes some good points.
    I don’t think it’s dangerous or whatever. It’s still a video game controller shaped like a video game controller.
    What he is talking about is the advancement in technology making things more life like and realistic. How this small thing, have resistance on a controller trigger to make it feel more like a real trigger ties into things like the rift and omni-directional treadmills.
    This makes me uncomfortable, which is a word I almost never use. I don’t think I want shooting dudes in Far Cry 3 to feel like shooting dudes in real life. I treasure the abstraction. It’s a game!
    While their is a clear definition between real life and playing a game this isn't an issue. The problem he sees and that scares him a little is as the games become more like life and the abstraction between playing and living is reduced what does that mean. He is thinking in a 10 year timeframe and what it will mean. I think his last paragraph sums his thought up pretty well
    Look. Things are about to get weird. The defense of hyperviolent games as disconnected fantasy in abstracto might not survive the rest of this decade. Calling our favorite games “murder simulators” ironically is still a cute bit of sarcasm now, but I don’t see that lasting. It feels like we’re maybe on the verge of some potentially gross, potentially indefensible stuff – not just these triggers, obviously, but all of it – this “immersion” tech in conjunction with a world of triple-A games all seemingly embroiled against one another in an interminable torture-porn-grossness contest. All I’m saying is: lines will be crossed. And when the impending shitstorm from the rest of the world catches up on this stuff, I hope we’ll all stop and think about how cool we are with this stuff before hopping to its defense. Deal?

    Take 10 years from now when you have version 5 of the occulus rift and all the graphic enhancements that entail another 2 generations of hardware. Somebody starts a 2nd life style game with the goal of rising to the top of the corporate world or being more than you can be. Once off payment and you are into the world, hardcore mode enabled, if you die then you can no longer play. So people can become a murder in the game, realistically hunt and kill people, and feeling every time they stab the knife into somebody. If you are in a VR situation ad things look like the real world, feel like the real world and the 'person' you just killed will no longer existing in the world what feelings do you have for what you have done.

    These are the lines that will be crossed and the question being asked is whether this is defensible as entertainment?

      Im sorry there's too much assuming and conjecture there to even begin. While graphics will continue to get better, there is no doubt, I also ask you then, to assume you know how the law will be positioned in ten years in reference to this? You can't tell me. Why? Because we don't know yet. It's a wait and see situation. As people get into power who are familiar with such things, sensibilities will come into play that weren't present before. New studies can arise leading to new information regarding things like violence in games and its relationship between real life and fantasy etc. We don't even know if 'uncanny valley' will actually be crossed completely within ten years. There may still be that 'gap' there that disconnects us. Infact there will ALWAYS be that gap that disconnects us due to it being on a screen. Until you can actually pick up a knife and thrust it into a corpse physically in a game feeling the warm blood trickle over your hands, feeling the blade grate against bone, feeling the organs squish around the blade, smelling the feces as they come out of the stab wounds in the stomach (Ive been a wardsman in a hospital, stabwounds to the gut and intestinal areas can be *horribly putrid*) then no occulus rift, no controller, no vibrating plastic recreation can cross that line of reality for anyone due to the instinctual knowledge you have taken a *real* life vs a digital one. Starting now with the hyperbole, the scare tactics and the 'OH GOD THE SKY IS FALLING' situations makes us no better than Fox News.

      How do I know what stabbing something is like? I had to cut a cows throat once when we slaughtered it. It's far gorier, far tougher and horrifically nastier than you'll ever know if you haven't done it and sorry I've shot tens of thousands of animals in a game, but I still remember that calf looking at me before I killed it and always will.

      Last edited 26/05/13 1:59 pm

        The entire article is conjecture, hypothesis, opinion and assumption
        There was a comment made by a colleague and based on that has had concerns about the direction he sees things going. So he decided to voice his thoughts on the matter. There was no 'Oh god the sky is falling' over reaction that I saw in the article.

        What I think is a valid concern is with the push from AAA studios to make things as realistic and violent as possible where is the line drawn. This has been explored and an 'agreement' reached on what is acceptable in other media such as movies and tv. This hasn't really been reached when it comes to VR so the question of what is tasteful/acceptable is very relevant matter for conversation. In a way it will be raised again once VR can be used for TV shows and the like. Is it going to be acceptable in a show like CSI which have gruesome killings to so that from the POV of the killer? For the purposes of classification rating does that count as higher impact violence that if it was in 3rd person view.

        Who knows where the technology will go and who knows what laws and rules will be in place in the future. Personally I would much prefer people who make those rules, regulations and laws to be considering these things now, rather than make a knee-jerk reaction based on public outrage because nobody has raised the issue and somebody has pushed past that wavey grey line of what is acceptable and the torches and pitchforks are out.

          "This has been explored and an 'agreement' reached on what is acceptable in other media such as movies and tv."

          What agreement and when exactly? I've never heard of any such thing and I've been involved in the industry in various ways? Various movie series such as SAW which had an overriding theme of murder and mayhem, made by a large studio mind you, earned hundreds of millions of dollars year to year with some of the most graphic scenes in history. Plus add to that that at the end of the series the good doctor from part 1 is revealed to be instrumental in the whole thing, organising a bunch of the murders and gets away scott free anyhow while all the innocents die?

          On TV we have shows like THE FOLLOWING which revel in their graphic depiction and glorification of murder (Love that show though), not to mention The Walking Dead with its gore upon gore upon gore?

          The whole article is written by Chicken Little, it's a massive overreaction to the situation. Technology is advancing but as it does, studios adapt with and so does the public. You will find that if 'murder simulators' pop up, and they will from indy developers more likely than major developers, with full immersion, they will have a niche no doubt, but won't be mass marketable. You also cannot jail someone for it. Sure you can ban the game, but it's not a jailable offense. It's gross, it's sick and its immoral, but it's not illegal. Why? Because they will argue a few things:

          1. Freedom of speech (Americans will and it will highly apply just as it did in the movie industry when censorship over the years in various forms has been applied to movies and removed under the first ammendment).
          2. The digital representation of a person is not a real person (Unless that digital representation is made to actually look like a person and the 'game' made to plot out the murder, then that, my friend is an entirely DIFFERENT kettle of fish and a whole different conversation and a really, really big issue (and a whole big part of this ;) )
          3. The whole uncanny valley thing still exists mentally. People will still know it isn't real.

          Despite how this sounds, I actually do agree with you, I am disturbed by the idea of a photorealistic GTA where I can run up, carjack someone and kill them photorealistically with blood and gore spraying everywhere. Also I question the studio that makes that ends up making that game and their morals and person. I honestly don't want to see it.

          What does thrill me? Photorealistic flight simulators, WW2 combat air sims, space sims etc. It's one of those things where unfortunately we're just in the end going to have to wait and see because no matter how much we want to plan and plan for it, that big ole' kneejerk reaction *is* going to happen when it occurs alas.

            Despite how this sounds, I actually do agree with you, I am disturbed by the idea of a photorealistic GTA where I can run up, carjack someone and kill them photorealistically with blood and gore spraying everywhere. Also I question the studio that makes that ends up making that game and their morals and person. I honestly don't want to see it.

            What does thrill me? Photorealistic flight simulators, WW2 combat air sims, space sims etc. It's one of those things where unfortunately we're just in the end going to have to wait and see because no matter how much we want to plan and plan for it, that big ole' kneejerk reaction *is* going to happen when it occurs alas.

            I think we are arguing similar points, although you are doing it more concisely than me
            Am I looking forward to the VR revolution? Certainly. I am pretty sure that post PAX I will be well and truly on the hypetrain if not have already thrown a chunk of money at tech.
            However if we want to push the art form forward I would much prefer survival game where violence is a matter of life and death, or an adventure. Take me on a journey, don't just give me gratuitous violence and expect me to love it.
            The kneejerk will come and when it does I would much prefer to be able to point to wonderful games that fill me with a sense of wonder than have to wade through the super violent, photorealistic shooters and point to some small indie games to show the other side of the art form. A for me that is reason enough to be discussing what we want out of the next generation of tech.

      What are these "lines"? Who makes/decides them? His morality system? Again, there are so many assumptions being made here, including the way people percieve art. I'm of the opinion that violence is capable of insight and serves its place. He seems to be lumping everything into the same category and i'm not sure there there's a single thing or notion in the world that could convince any sane person that Far Cry Blood Dragon is realistic.

      It's a simplistic view of violence and the way we consume creative works. It's written purely on the basis that more is bad and shows no actual insight into the real effects of violence and perceived action on the human brain. Seems to me he's trying to make a pre-emptive strike but unfortunately failed to bring up anything that isn't just simple, uninformed, superficial observation.

        I agree that violence in art can serve a purpose and has it's place. But as the author says we are currently in a world of triple-A games all seemingly embroiled against one another in an interminable torture-porn-grossness contest.
        He isn't lumping all games into the same basket, more that the AAA studios are producing violent games as a general rule and trying to make them as realistic and graphically violent as possible. As games technology advances is this what we as an consumers want.
        Maybe I'm in the minority but I would prefer adventure and story to graphic violence. I don't see this as any different to film, when people push the boundaries and make torture porn like Saw I don't watch it. It is not something that does it for me, I don't enjoy it so I don't watch it.

    As an avid hunter i can firmly say that the trigger on a real firearm will be nothing like a trigger on a gamepad. Not unless they get the smooth-thin-metal firmness and responsiveness of a "real-trigger".
    If any of my firearms triggers started vibrating i would promptly visit a competent gunsmith.

    XBone controllers looks heavy and could be use for cannon ammo on pirate ships.


    Guess what buddy? It's still just a video game! That's all that needs to be said, because reality is reality and games are games. They always have been & always will be no matter how realistic or immersive they are in 10 years time. Ask people who have actually shot or killed another human being whether or not video games have, or ever will have, something that even begins to resemble the same psychological and physical impact, as holding a controller or using a VR headset and shooting at pixels. My guess is they would either laugh at you or be offended that you're insulting their intelligence.

    TIp: I have put this question to someone who still has a bullet in their leg from Vietnam. War is not comparable in any way, shape or form. All of these sheltered kids and brain dead reporters have A LOT to learn about reality.

      Just because it is still a video game does that mean it can't have an emotional impact on you?
      Is it equally comparable, of course not and anybody claiming so is part of the chicken little, sky is falling brigade. But no impact. Games as they are today can have an emotional impact as can other 'fake' forms of entertainment.
      Have you ever laughed at a game, cried at a movie or had nightmares because you watched something when you were to young to appreciate it. This is the sort of impact we are talking about here. Reality is reality and entertainment media is entertainment media and the two will not be confused, but that shouldn't mean we ignore the issues advances in technology could bring.
      As games become more immersive and more story focused and more realistic the impact they can have is just as great or possibly even greater than a movie.
      What does that mean for classification? What does the mean for the direction of AAA games. Do you want the focus to be on CoD style games looking and feeling as realistic as possible, or would you prefer to have more of a Apocalypse now style game focusing on a story and the human condition? Smelling the stench of a WW1 trench would make the game more realistic but is that something that adds enjoyment to the game. What is the correct course of action when somebody make the playable version of 'A serbian film' for the occulus rift.

      Maybe considering these things is a waste of time but then again as a hobby we love isn't it worth considering the direction we want to go. Maybe some self reflection and consideration is worthwhile before we have something that crosses the line and we are dealing with rushed through policy changes driven by ACL and Fox news

    I myself have actually fired a .222 bolt-action rifle and I can tell you right now that firing that is NOTHING like firing a similar rifle in a video game! My ears were ringing for hours afterwards, that does not happen when you fire it in a game. The same can be said for the recoil and the fact that I managed to completely miss the target!

      and the fact that I managed to completely miss the target!
      But that is exactly my experience in multiplayer FPS games. So they must be the same thing :P

    Can Kotaku please stop posting clickbait for once or what? Seems like every second article now is just four lines of drivel designed to cause controvesy.

    you know children can buy plastic toy guns with triggers right? haven't you ever heard of a Cap Gun? and you think controllers resembling a gun trigger is dangerous? Nick Robinson, absolute idiot.

    This is when you need to start getting worried about guns and games... lulz

    I've never fired a gun and had the triggers rumble.

    Gun triggers don't rumble when you pull them.

    Gun/rifle triggers don't rumble.

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