If you’re a fan of the PlayStation 5’s DualSense controller and all its neat haptic feedback and adaptive triggers, you might be excited to know Microsoft is considering bringing similar features to Xbox Series X/S controllers at some point. Or, at the very least, it wants to know if that’s something people might want from it.
News of this comes from a survey sent out to owners of the new Xboxes, which, on top of all the usual questions that ask if they’re satisfied with their purchase, inquires whether or not users are “aware of features on PlayStation controllers” and if they’d like them to be included in Xbox controllers. The phrasing doesn’t specifically talk about things like haptic feedback and adaptive triggers, but those are the distinguishing factors for the DualSense compared to Xbox, so what else could it be referring to? [Thanks TechRadar]
Personally, I’ve not had any game really wow me with these features just yet. Astro’s Playroom, the PlayStation 5’s pack-in game, was basically a tech demo (and love letter to the PlayStation brand’s history) for the DualSense, but everything else like Spider-Man: Miles Morales has basically just felt like targeted vibrations on one side of the controller or another that didn’t add much to the experience for me. I even turned off the adaptive triggers for Miles Morales, as I got annoyed at the constant resistance while I tried to swing around the game’s recreation of New York City. I don’t doubt that something worthwhile can come from the controller and all its fancy innards, I just don’t feel like I’ve seen it yet.
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One thing worth considering is that, should Microsoft decide to add these features to Xbox Series X/S controllers, this might incentivize more third-party developers to use them. Games like Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla (which I am once again asking Ubisoft to fix the glitch preventing me from finishing the game, please) don’t do much with the DualSense’s capabilities. But when you’re developing a game for so many platforms and a feature will only be utilized by one, there’s not much reason to devote the time and resources to that kind of functionality. But if both the major consoles are capable of things like haptic feedback and adaptive triggers, maybe more companies will go out of their way to work with the tech in interesting ways. Cool stuff like the PS4’s DualShock 4 motion controls were mostly used by Sony’s first-party developers all of the last generation, as most companies are working toward the lowest common denominator of features.
Whatever the case may be, these types of features do raise questions about accessibility, as adaptive triggers that resist pushing them down can make playing games more difficult for people with muscle weakness or motor disabilities. For more on that, check out Diego’s extensive feature on the matter.