MotorStorm Apocalypse developer Evolution Studios played an "instrumental" role in the DualShock 4's design, revealing that it started working with Sony on the controller's functionality all the way back in 2011.
"The control side of things has always been a really important thing for racing games," Evolution's technical director Scott Kirkland told EDGE, "so we made sure that we got involved in the controller discussion very early on. I think this goes back to Christmas 2011."
Evolution's feedback helped shape the controller, Kirkland revealed, and the team even managed to convince Sony's Japan team to alter the components it had been planning to use for the controller's gyro functionality.
"We were instrumental in securing the specific gyro components that [will] go in the DualShock 4," he continued, "we had prototypes that demonstrated that the really high frequency gyros were the ones that allowed us to chuck the controller around like a steering wheel, and the ones that they were considering [meant] you have to rely on accelerometers to compensate for that.
"So we put a very compelling case forward to the guys in Japan, they listened and they're the components that are in the DualShock 4."
Besides the gyro functionality, Evolution "did a lot of work" to improve the controller's analogue sticks, too, and created a prototype using MotorStorm RC "that allows you to exploit the reduced deadzone size on the controller and the more accurate sticks".
Early DualShock 4 prototypes "looked like something that Bruce Wayne would carry," Kirkland adds. "It was very industrial in design, plastic, [and] there were things that would come off. I remember seeing paperwork for the import and export prototype, and you know all of them were handmade and insanely expensive and we felt privileged to be getting these samples."
Evolution isn't the only first-party developer that played a role in the controller's design, though.
Guerrilla Games' Herman Hulst - which is developing PS4 title Killzone: Shadow Fall - revealed elsewhere in the magazine that two members of his team were also involved in "weekly or bi-weekly" calls on the new controller, which involved "pushing hard and fighting battles on the indentation of the thumbsticks" and "having outwardly curved triggers".
Sony's developer-focussed approach to PlayStation 4 should come as a welcoming sign for consumers, who it will hope to win over when the console goes on sale later this year.
As well as working on the DualShock 4, Evolution is also developing PS4 launch title DriveClub, which is expected to go on sale alongside the console this Christmas.
Source: EDGE | Issue 253