Sony patents a system that turns any everyday object into a Playstation controller: for example, a banana
Under the name “System and method to generate user inputs for a video game”, Sony patented in July 2020 a system that allows any object to be used as a Playstation controller, Gamesindustry.biz account. The example used by the patent could not be more clarifying: a banana, as a case of “a cheap, simple and non-electronic object such as a video game peripheral”. That is, it has to be “any non-luminous passive object that is being held by the user” and that will be registered by a camera.
This camera records the user’s hands and tracks their movements based on its pixels, contours and colors. Potentially, this enables the variable of using any object as a Move-style control, and also the ability to use any pair of objects as a steering wheel-style peripheral.
The patent would enable the camera to map virtual buttons on the desired object, so that pressing a specific area of the object will work like pressing a button. Finally, it should be remembered that the registration of a patent does not necessarily imply that this project is in development or in the commercialization process. Simply put, Sony has the technology and wants to prevent others from exploiting it. The clearest example, highlights Gamesindustry.biz, is in some devices that throw smoke and smells at the player’s face in a virtual reality viewer, something that we will hardly see put into practice.
And controls for virtual reality
This system, which proposes a game experience diametrically opposed to the amazingly immersive Playstation 5 DualSense haptic technology, also distances itself from another recent Sony patent that offers a first look at what the controls of your newly announced virtual reality system might look like. These are more traditional controls that would lose the famous luminous sphere of the Move, replaced by an LED panel that emits light of different colors.
They also include triggers that, in the style of the DualSense, offer variable resistance as they are pressed, and also allow the incorporation of haptic technology. Newer (although Valve has experimented with this) are the three-finger and thumb sensors– This suggests that players could experience the size and texture of different objects that they hold or touch with their hands.