Have you ever wondered what it might feel like to pick up a rocket launcher like the one you use in Halo? Have you dreamt about the heft and feeling of metal against your hands? Or, what about picking up other gaming objects - maybe crashing into wooden boxes or picking up cold crystals or other objects. Well, what if those sensations were real.
What if you could actually feel digital gaming items in the physical world? It's a concept that sounds completely impossible, right? Here's something that might blow your mind: a professor from the University of Utah is currently working on a gaming controller that will let gamers feel objects found in games.
Ready, Set, Feel!
Currently, Dr. William Provancher is working on a Kickstarter campaign for a gaming controller that puts animated objects into your hands, kind of. You see, this controller lets you experience what objects in games might feel like were you to hold those items in your hands. The company is called 'Tactical Haptics,' and the gaming controller is unlike any you've ever seen before.
For obvious reasons, I love this idea. But, how well does it work? The Verge recently reported on the controller, and their team found it to be quite useful and effective. From the sounds of things, this controller doesn't actually let you feel an object, but it does create a kind of sensation that your hands will love. If you're into a game enough, that sensation will connect with your brain with the end result being the feeling that you are actually immersed in a game, weapons and all.
Gimmicky or Real?
I know it sounds kind of gimmicky, and the controller may never actually make it to market, but it's a really cool idea nonetheless. It's also an idea that Nintendo tried to work out in some ways with the original Wii remote. Granted, the Wii remote simply provided a vibrating sensation when used during certain games, but the premise is roughly the same.
Connecting your brain to a physical sensation (and your sight as well) helps to bring gamers closer to a game. That, in return, makes a game all the more powerful. Graphics cards and amazing sound help too, but imagine if you could combine it all together. Pretty crazy, right?
You're not the only one that thinks this idea is the bees knees. The U.S. National Science Foundation has already provided the good doctor with a grant. The company still needs to raise money from the crowd (that's you), so go ahead and invest if you think that this project is something you'll want to see (and feel) in the near future.
How about it? A gaming controller that lets you feel the objects in a game? Is this something that you'd buy? If so, what kind of a price tag would you slap on it? No word yet on pricing, by the way, but it's an interesting notion all the same, right?