Novint Falcon 3D Touch Controller

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While I was at PAXEast there was a vendor there showing off the Novint Falcon 3D touch controller.  I got a few minutes on the device and another player was good enough to let me catch him in this action shot.

Admittedly when I walked up on the booth I saw the controller and I thought “Gimmick” but when i sat down with it I was definitely caught off guard by its weight and quality feel. It wasn’t a device meant to fleece gamers out of some more money this thing had a real feel.  I did have a bit of trouble when first grabbing the device.  I was not used to holding my hand in the air and I think I over-thought using it a whole bunch which wasted lots of time I could have been experimenting with the device.

For those of you who don’t know not only is the Falcon 3D a controller to replace your mouse but its a haptic feedback controller.  This means when you run into a wall the controller pushes back at you, when you fire your gun you feel the recoil through the controller.  One of the coolest features is that when you are shot the controller makes you feel it  and makes you feel it with directionality so you know exactly where the shots came from.

I had seen the device online and had heard about it but a combination of not believing it and assuming if it did work it would cost a fortune basically drove the idea completely out of my head.

In the 4-5 minutes I had I definitely experienced the recoil but I cannot speak to the directionality of hits as while i was shooting at the ground and running against walls someone pwned me and I felt the pressure of the line waiting so I got up and let the next person in.  I really would like to try more of the haptic feedback while walking along walls and around corners and I would also really like to get a feel for the directional impacts you feel as you take damage.

Surfing on over to the Novint site it seems they have something else in the works over there called XIO which shows how this tech is clearly being developed for military/combat training applications.

Novint is based out of Albuquerque New Mexico

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