Sony’s aiming to make some big changes to how games feel in your hands with the new PS5 DualSense controller, confident enough to make a full name change for the device after essentially four console generations of DualShocks. Astro’s Playroom is set to be a kind of “PS5 showcase” title that will demonstrate the PS5 console and DualSense controller, installed on every new PS5. To help developers stretch their creative muscles with how to implement the DualSense’s unique haptic feedback, adaptive triggers, and other features that make it a truly “next-gen” controller, Sony demoed an early version of Astro’s Playroom to studios who were working with the PS5.
The revelation came from Sony’s Worldwide Head of Marketing, Eric Lempel, who spoke with Geoff Keighley during his DualSense controller hands on. While the controller hands-on didn’t showcase much new itself, the interview with Lempel revealed a bunch of great information. The question about Astro’s Playroom being demoed for PS5 devs starts at about 9:30 in the video below.
“What you played is a part of a title called Astro’s Playroom. It was in our show a few weeks ago. And it’s installed on every PlayStation 5, so everyone who buys a PlayStation 5 will get this game. And it really shows off a lot of the features of the platform, but really does a great job of showing all the benefits of the DualSense controller,” Lempel said, explaining why the game is installed as a default on every PS5.
He went on to say that PS5 developers were given a demo of Astro’s Playroom to kick start ideas based on what’s possible with the controller. “So what we did is, early on we had another version of the title that we took around to developers that were engaged in PlayStation 5 development, and showed them what was possible with a title. And it’s been a great example. It’s really opened up people’s minds to how they can use this new device and really the new features of the controller.”
Lempel closed out by saying he thinks Astro’s Playroom is what everyone should play first when they get their PS5. “But yeah, I would say when people get their PlayStation 5, that should probably be one of the first things they do, is just jump in there and experience this, because as you’ve [Geoff Keighley] seen, it’s pretty special.”
Developers have all continued to sing praises about the DualSense and how it will deepen immersion in games through our hands and how games feel.
It’s rather difficult to demonstrate what a controller feels like during a video, but the interview did give us a bunch of new information about the PlayStation 5, including an update on PS5 preorders, a commitment to console generations, and a promise that Sony would talk about alternate PS5 and DualSense color schemes in the future. It also gave us our first proper size comparison between the DualShock 4 and DualSense.