Game Controllers and Your Brain!

I necro'd this old post since it does a good job at explaining the evolution of the game controller. We started out with simple Functions, less than 3 buttons and a joy stick.

Now Game controllers have 14 buttons and 2 Joysticks with non-linear and pressure sensitive function. Stop to think about the complexity of the actions you are making while playing a game. If you really want an idea of how amazing this is, try playing QWOP, a browser game where you use the Q W and O P buttons to simulate the function of the muscles in your legs.



This video seems a bit silly to most, and even as a player most of these kills are more luck than skill, but think of everything that is going on in your brain while doing things like this. Even with the silly knife throws you are calculating an angle(even if it's a random one), accepting that as your trajectory and pressing a button to enact the action.

To aim at a person first you must calculate the distance from you, then the distance from where you are currently aiming, press the button to aim down your sights, calculate how long to hold the joystick to reach your potential target, press the trigger to begin firing, calculate whether this person is already aiming at you, and whether you should move your character to the side/crouch to avoid the shot, and THEN you may finally connect your shots with the target.

All of this tends to happen in less than two seconds, making it some incredibly complex thought processes simply for playing a game. What is the future of gaming? Well, many of us think that controlling the game with our minds directly is coming soon. If that's the case, how will that affect what kind of gameplay is fun? Will it create more opportunity for storytelling? Or will it simply make it easier for us to play?

No matter way it goes, we are moving towards the future of controllers!