New hardware is always exciting, whether it’s a brand new console or a bit of plastic you stick on your analog triggers to make them a little less slippy. However, when the postman dropped off our PlayStation Move last week excitement levels were at an all-time high: this is, along with 3D and whatever magic Dylan Cuthbert’s brewing up next, is the future of PlayStation and regardless of your thoughts on motion control it’s clear Sony is putting everything behind it.
We can’t show you the media kit, yet (so we’ll save our own hardware shots for later too) but the packaging is to die for and once inside, getting our sweaty mitts on the finished Move hardware is a treat that only happens once or twice a console generation. It feels great – it’s weighted nicely and balanced just right, the size is perfect and you immediately grip it with confidence. The difference in form and function from the Dual Shock is distinct – it has to be – but it’s absolutely a PlayStation product.
The controller itself is populated with more buttons than you might at first realise – alongside the main Move button on the top (and the four surrounding face buttons) there’s a spongy trigger (with a fair amount of motion in its arc) and there are start and select buttons on the side of the unit. Tricky to get to, those, but purposefully out of the way so they’re not pushed by accident during a game. The striking thing, of course, is the white ball on the top of the controller, which, as you’ll find out when you first start a game, is quite happy to illuminate with all kinds of hues depending on what’s going on.
Set up and calibration is a doddle – the PlayStation Eye (nothing has changed with this piece of the hardware) needs flicking to the wide-angle mode, and placing directly in the centre of your TV, either above or below. Plug it in, wire up the Move controller via USB (so it syncs to your PS3) and you’re good to go. Dropping in a Move game presents you with a simple one-time set-up (although you’ll need to do it each time you play a new game) which involves pointing the Move controller at the Eye and pressing the Move button – once that’s done you’re all set.
It’s worth mentioning that the Move controller quite happily navigates the PS3’s XMB – something we’ve not seen documented before. It uses the internal motion control tech rather than the Eye, mind, you just simply pull the trigger and ‘move’ the controller to browse the rows and columns of the media bar. We’ll have more on this in a future article, though – this one’s all about the hardware and the games and we’re happy to say that the Move controller itself is lovely, feels nicely built and is a reasonably attractive piece of gaming equipment that compliments the PS3 nicely. Now, about those games.