The last time we did one of these generational overviews, I wrote an article about how the DualShock 3 “sucked”. This is a feeling from my time with the DualShock and DualShock 2, which both sucked too.
Here are some of what I said in 2013::
The DualShock 3 – and Sixaxis before it – are terrible pads by today’s standards. I find it uncomfortable to hold them for long periods of time, not to mention the occasional physical pain (thumb tendons are not intended to be used to hold such sticks).
Your triggers feel cheap. The placement of the thumb pins is far from ideal for playing marksmen, and these thumb pins have a dead zone the size of a mass grave.
Bad controllers, most of them! Sure you could to survive
While sticking to the same basic controller design for three generations of consoles, Sony built something of a branding tradition. When the PlayStation 4 hit the market in 2013, it was clear that even the most cracked Sony fans would need a change.
Enter the DualShock 4. What could have been a makeover of the last three controllers, and perhaps should have been a complete redesign, somehow managed to instead somehow stride the line astride both of them and change the appearance of the pad straight
I didn’t like it when the thumb pins were in the middle of the controller. I’ve never met a person in my life who sees this as the best way to play modern camera-controlled 3D games – shooters in particular – which leads me to believe that it’s not just for the PS4 but for the the DualSense for the PS5 staying there is just a hardware team at Sony that fucks us.
I also didn’t like how squishy the main triggers were. That was a problem with older DualShocks, and while it was improved slightly here, it was still a problem, especially when I spent so much time on the Xbox Elite controllerwhich is almost perfect.
The list of things I do did how is much longer. The first thing I loved was the feeling. The matte finish of many official DualShock 4 controllers not only felt comfortable in the hand, but also kept fingerprints away.
I loved the touchpad. I wish more games had used it, of course, just as I wish more games had used the Vita’s rear touchpad, but we live in a world where sometimes console games just don’t get stuck, and this was one of them.
I loved the general comfort. Sure, the DualShock 4 kept the same basic shape as its predecessors, but the rounded edges of its “handles” made it more comfortable to use for hours than any other PlayStation controller has ever done before.
I loved the microphone and think any game that has used it to make little phone noises or play intercom dialogue instead of the actual speakers deserves a Gold Star.
But most of all I loved the light, a console game did Floor. It was great when games could use it cleverly to tell you game material, but it was even better in multiplayer scenarios. I look around on the couches on my first PS4 FIFA Spending the night with my friends and being able to instantly see who was playing whom and whose controller was who was like looking at the color-coded lighting, as if a console function had arrived from 2030.
This would be the part where I compare the DualShock 4 to the DualSense and say goodbye as I look to the future, but I haven’t picked up the PS5 controller yet. Instead, I just say goodbye to the DualShock 4 and thank Sony for finally daring to do it little something else.
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