News Article

Guerrilla Games Put a Stop to Touch Sensitive PS4 Controller Prototype

Posted by Sammy Barker

Studio politely declined design

We’ve already illustrated on multiple occasions that the DualShock 4 is a vast improvement over its divisive predecessor, but things were almost very different. Speaking as part of an interview with VG247, Killzone: Shadow Fall’s lead designer Eric Boltjes explained that at one point Sony toyed with the idea of a touch-sensitive controller for the PlayStation 4. Fortunately, the Dutch developer shot it down with a spattering of M82 assault rifle fire.

“When developing the PS4 and our game as well, we held a lot of prototypes, and we played around with them as well,” he told the website. “In one, they had replaced all of the buttons [with] touch-sensitive [panels]. We just said, ‘No’.”

The studio was also instrumental in forcing the platform holder to change the device’s triggers. “We wanted better triggers,” he continued. “They previously reverted inwards where, in a shooter game, that’s not very good, as your fingers slip off. We really pushed them to make triggers that go up.”

Boltjes concluded that the developer’s upcoming shooter is a better game because of the controller improvements. “Everything works now, from response time, the dead-zones, everything is better,” he said. We agree, though we are a little worried that the significantly improved triggers are going to result in more developers mapping the fire button to R2. After over a decade of feathering the R1 button, it’s not going to be easy to adapt.


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User Comments (11)



InsertNameHere said:

I'm glad they shot the idea down, it would have been very hard, if not impossible to adapt to. I'm still having trouble seeing how PC gamers are going to get along with no analogues, but I guess I'll have to wait and see.

I agree with you, Sammy, after years of primarily using R1, it would be hard having to remember that R2 is now the button I should be hitting - I am really anxious to try out the triggers, though.



Gemuarto said:

Not sure about firing, but aiming should be on L1, no matter what. L1 is perfect for aiming, starting from Resident Evil 1. Anyway, developers should let people to change buttons layout. I mean, you can do that in Killzone 1. Why can't in 2, 3 and Mercenary? T___T



Jaz007 said:

Hallelujah! That would have been terrible. Thank you Guerrilla Games.



Gamer83 said:

I'll have absolutely no problem making the switch to R2, in fact, I welcome it. As far as some of the ideas here that Guerilla shot down, like others, I can only say thanks to them for that. A touch only controller would've been a major deal breaker. I don't mind touch controls for certain little gimmicks, like zooming on the sniper rifle in Uncharted: Golden Abyss. Other than that, keep that sh*t out of my games.



ShogunRok said:

Hopefully most games allow for aim to be switched to L1/R1. I know you can do so in Killzone: Shadow Fall.



BlueProxy said:

Thank you Guerrilla, 1,000 times over. Other than very simple games touch screen controls just don't work well for gaming. To make the entire controller a touch pad, for a console is just pointless.



BlueProxy said:

@ShogunRok I hope so too. Maybe the triggers a worth the learning curve on the new controller, but L1/R1 feel more natural, and less work to use all the buttons..



rjejr said:

I have skinny tiny short fingers and I'm really not very good w/ R2. Still a 1,000x better than ZR and ZL on the Wii U Gamepad though. I just pretend they aren't there b/c there is no way I can ever use them.

Touch buttons sounds like a lousy idea. It would also kill the entire argument that iOS and Android can't have real games b/c there are no buttons. If DS4 was all touch the hardcore fanboys would all have nervous breakdowns trying to defend their choice of pastime over everybody elses.



JaxonH said:

I don't think it's just PC gamers that will buy a Steam Machine, although many of them of course will. I'm of the belief that while we all have preferences, a gamer should be willing to give anything a go if the experience provides fun. And all consoles have great games that are fun, and most offer a unique experience via input method. So there's a lot to enjoy all around.

I've never actually been a fan of gaming on PC (don't like tinkering with settings- I have very little time outside of work and just like to pick up a controller and play). I have a few games on my laptop, like Dishonored, Portal 2 and Quantum Conundrum, but I rarely ever play them because of the hassle connecting to TV, adjusting panoramic view and digging out the 360 controller,. The Steam Machine controller looks really awesome to me though, and I think it'd be a blast playing after investing the time to become efficient with that controller.

Honestly, I'm really excited to get a Steam Machine when they release. I'd already have a PS4, Wii U, Vita and 3DS, but I just can't resist that controller... it just looks too fun. I just hope I'm not the only NON-PC gamer that is willing to give something new a try.



charlesnarles said:

I use my index fingers for L2/R2 too, so I prefer L1/R1 for shooters. MGS4 online solidified (Lawlz!) that control scheme for me. Dualshock 4 is a bigger design, so maybe it'll be more comfy for bigger hands to use the 2s for aim n fire

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