Quantcast
Goodbye rumble controller, hello electric shock - Destructoid

DestructoidJapanatorTomopopFlixist



Goodbye rumble controller, hello electric shock


8:15 PM on 02.18.2013
Muscle-zapping controllerGoodbye rumble controller, hello electric shock photo



The next stage of videogame evolution might take place where you least expect it: within your body. A team of German researchers have deviated from the traditional rumble-controller formula, instead embracing an entirely new way for players to feel the action present on the screen, reports New Scientist.

Rather than positioning tiny vibrating motors within a phone or game controller to produce that familiar rumbling sensation, Pedro Lopes and the group at the Hasso Plattner Institute in Potsdam, Germany have used small electrodes placed on the forearm to electrically stimulate nerves, making the muscles contract. No pain, no gain -- right?

In reality, the process is entirely pain-free and allows the hands to automatically grip and tilt the controller based on stimulation delivered by the gaming scenario. The EMS or electrical muscle stimulation is currently used in the medical field for patients of paralysis but it could soon enter the gaming arena as a more effective way to deliver the feeling of touch.

As Lopes describes, "It creates a strong, painless contraction – in your palm flexor muscle – that makes you fight your phone."

To test the effectiveness of EMS within a videogame setting, a study was conducted in which participants were tasked with controlling an aircraft while flying against a strong wind. All of the partakers preferred the re-imagined 'zap' method over traditional rumble feedback. As another bonus, the lack of motors in the new system means that it will be easy to downsize to fit within handheld consoles, smartphones, or tablets in the future.

Clearly hands-on gaming could have a whole new meaning in the years to come. Assuming that an electric shock wouldn't cause a dramatic mid-game seizure, how would you feel about being zapped during an average play session?

Muscle-zapper forces gamers' own hands against them [New Scientist] [Image source]






Comments not appearing? Anti-virus apps like Avast or some browser extensions can cause this.
Easy fix: Add   [*].disqus.com   to your software's white list. Tada! Happy comments time again.

Did you know? You can now get daily or weekly email notifications when humans reply to your comments.






Controllers

2:30 PM on 03.14.2014
Valve shows off its redesigned Steam Controller

Yes, it's still weird-looking but the Steam Controller is coming along. Particularly when compared with its original, intimidating version which you can see side-by-side below. We knew a redesign was in the works, but this it...more



12:30 PM on 03.14.2014
Amazon's controller isn't much of a looker

Blogger Dave Zatz has seemingly come across photos of the game controller for Amazon's long-rumored media streaming device by way of a Brazilian regulatory agency. The controller will reportedly ship separately, which has me ...more



2:30 PM on 03.12.2014
Google buys Android controller company Green Throttle Games

Green Throttle Games was part of the whole Android-based gaming arms race alongside Ouya, GameStick, and others. What made GTG unique was their Atlas controller, which paired with the company's Arena software, allowed for mul...more



View all Controllers






Back to Top




All content is yours to recycle through our Creative Commons License permitting non-commercial sharing requiring attribution. Our communities are obsessed with videoGames, movies, anime, and toys.

Living the dream since March 16, 2006

Advertising on destructoid is available: Please contact them to learn more