Force feedback vibration controllers are nearly within the
grasp of North American PlayStation 3 gamers. Announced at last
year’s Tokyo Games Show, the DualShock 3 released November 11 in Japan.
Gamers elsewhere resorted to import solutions in order to experience
the good vibrations not felt since the PlayStation 2 days.
The DualShock 3 will hit U.S. retail on April 15, near the
release of Gran Turismo 5 Prologue,
which supports rumble feedback. SCEA announced in February that the DualShock 3
will retail at $54.99, or $5 more than the current SIXAXIS controller.
Although Sony appears to have little problem maintaining
multiple different SKUs for its consoles, it has no intention of keeping two
controller models on the market. Speaking to MTV, a Sony representative said, “Sixaxis
will no longer be offered after it’s completely sold through at retail (likely
by the summer timeframe).”
One interesting thing to take away from the Sony statement
is that a new 40GB PS3 console package will be on its way perhaps as soon as
summer. As the current 40GB model includes a SIXAXIS controller, Sony will have
to at the very least revise its current bundle to incorporate the newer
The DualShock 3 controller will be officially a part of new
consoles this June, with the introduction of the Metal
Gear Solid 4 package which will
include the game, 80GB PlayStation 3 and controller.
4/3/08 Update: Gamers are reporting that that local retailers, such as GameStop and Best Buy, have begun receiving early shipments of DualShock 3 controllers and are permitted to sell immediately.