Sony Patents ‘Smart Shells’ for Controllers: Put a DualShock Inside a Teddy Bear’s Rear End, Squeeze its Tummy
As part of its continuing quest to win the console wars, Sony has patented the ultimate way to mentally scar little children – by allowing gamers to insert a DualShock into a teddy bear’s trunk.
The patent we uncovered, which was only recently published but filed back in ’11, covers “Smart Shells” for controllers. Smart shells are cases that connect up to a controller to use its circuitry and sensors as part of its own design, something Sony has done before, and they are a perfectly sensible idea as it means peripherals don’t need to waste costs including the circuitry all over again.
Sony first mentions some of the more reasonable applications, such as the now-real sharpshooter accessory:
The patent continues by describing a few enhancements to the sharpshooter design that sadly never left the R&D room, such as proximity and touch sensors to work out if you’re holding it like a pistol, machine gun or sniper rifle, as well as a scope (the final Sharpshooter still actually includes a slot for the scope).
It then details a promising looking PS Move-joystick combo what would be welcomed by many a flight sim fan:
But then things get a bit weird. Nonchalantly, the patent states:
FIG. 5 illustrates a gamepad controller mated with a stuffed animal shell in accordance with an embodiment.
Once you’ve mated the controller with your animal, you can then play with it:
When a toddler pokes the tummy of stuffed animal 501, sensor 603 in the tummy area sends a signal through interface 504, cable 549, and input port 512 of the gamepad game controller to a video game console. The game console can render on a television an animated version of the stuffed animal chuckling and laughing at being poked, thereby causing enjoyment for the toddler.
Of course, the problem that the patent doesn’t seem to solve is the fact that the teddy has to have a hard shell for it to have an enclosure to fit the DualShock in, which slightly defeats the whole point of a cuddly toy.
Today’s patent is the latest in a series of PlayStation teddy bear patents, with previous patents PSLS uncovered including a teddy bear that gets lonely when you don’t look at it and another that can move its own limbs, synthesize its own words and cry human tears.
Would you be interested in mating your controller with a bear? Or are you more interested in a Move joystick? What was your childhood bear called? Let us know in the comments below, or simply sit back and imagine this being Sony’s main E3 announcement.