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February 8th 2010 7:25 pm

Sony: Missing the FPS boat?

First Person Shooter (FPS) games are fun. FPS are becoming as varied as racing games, from truly arcade (Unreal Tournament), to strategic (MAG, CoD:MW), to role play (Borderlands) - there's a FPS for everyone. But let's face it, without precision control, in an easy-to-use platform, all that something for everyone falls on it's face.

Point and click. Click and kill. Is there any action in all of gaming so simply, yet brutally, poetic? Sure there's a generation of HALO gamers now that swear by their pickle-topped hamburger paddle, and even some old PC gamers who refuse to let go of thier trackball, but the truth is, FPS was built around M/K. Why mess with success?

It appears that Sony is ignoring this tried true and loved combination of devices for the most part*, by only offering us their own hand-cramping paddle and expecting us to attempt control. If anything Sony should be looking to differentiate it's flagship console from that other High Definition gaming system. This would be a win/win for make.believe - not only would you further separate your product from the direct competition, but also stick a big nasty thorn in the side of the PC gaming market... *achem* ...the WINDOWS PC gaming market. Is it too late to make that a win/win/win? Have you looked at all the coin Nintendo brings in with yet-another-licensed-accessory for the Wii lately?

There is indeed a market for point and click control, Sony. Good, solid, quality production options already exist for it. You can one-up the competition again with it. Most importantly; gamers want it. Demand developers put the functionality in the games, Sony (and be a good sport, support it with some home-grown hardware).

*Unreal Tournament 3 supports Mouse and Keyboard functionality - that's the only game thus far.

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11 replies

Totally agree, it wouldn't even be that hard, since you can pair a BT M/K already for web browsing etc. And is not like it would kill of the PS3 controller,as you would still need it for all other types of games (and if Sony wanted to, to control video playback, XMB or anything else they wanted locked off)

It really would pull a lot of PC gamers away I feel. I left PC gaming for one simple reason, the constant need to upgrade hardware every few months to stay up to date, £40 for a new game, then £100 each for new VGA and more RAM.

Good shout, good point, well made
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I would love for the PS360 to both embrace mouse and keyboard control as an alternative for inputs on FPS/RTS games! Especially now with the proliferation of wireless/bluetooth mouse/keyboards... It really kills me that they both can use mice/keyboards right now! Xbox uses it for text input on some screens, while you can have a mouse/keyboard connected to your PS3 for web browsing and system config. Why don't games use them already!!!??
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also, this is pretty much the only complaint I hear now from old/current PC gamers... why haven't sony/M$ listened?
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if you had it where consoles let you have mice/keyboards to play FPS it'd be an unfair advantage to the person with the controller. sure you might say, well they need to get one just like i did if they want to be on my level... but then you'd just sound like a pudgy brat who doesn't even leave his room to take a piss. i'm sure they're not doing it for a real reason.

if it was mandatory that's one thing, but to blatantly have an advantage isn't cool. hey lets race! you on your gokart and me in my concept car.
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I'm pretty sure this is exactly the reason. Same reason both Microsoft and Sony won't "authorize" any gamepads that have turbo buttons and things like that.

It's sad, but you can't deny it WOULD be quite an advantage for a M&K player versus a gamepad player.
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Unreal Tournament 3 on PS3 offers the importing of mods (made on your PC) and also supports keyboard/mouse as your control method. I wish more games would have this kind of support...
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Doesn't the PS3 already support keyboard/mouse controls? So isn't this up to the game developers?
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Yep, PS3 natively supports mice/keyboards. But, outside of Unreal Tournament 3 apparently, no one has chosen to let games use them. FPS and RTS games would greatly benefit from it. (Xbox supports keyboards for text entry on the dashboard, but not in games also.)

There is no good reason. I don't feel it would be unfair to anyone.... I think it could be simply solved by having 3 rooms - controller, mouse/keyboard, and both. Let the players decide, though ultimately I don't think it would matter and everyone could play together with no problems.
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I've seen videos in YouTube on Modern Warfare 2 (PC) were 65/2 kills are possible... by snipers!

I've also noticed -after quite extensive gameplay on my ps3- that a good average on team deathmatch for top players is about 30 kills.

30 kills after sweating it with a gamepad vs 60 kills on a mouse?

I certainly wouldn't play when the odds are stacked that far against me.
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Personally I prefer to use a controller then to just a keyboard and mouse to play and FPS. The only game I pretty much play on the PC anymore are Action RPGs and RTSs.
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Game developers do have the option of allowing/supporting the native features of the PS3 - including M/K. And while they've, for the most part, declined to include this functionality you don’t see Sony going out of their way to ask them for it... at least not that I've seen, being a consistent game-blog reader (arstechnica, joystiq).

Further, considering the success of the Wii default user interface (Wiimote+Chuck) which is simply another format of "point and click" I would bet the next generation of consoles will likely be getting away from the pad as default - may as well get a head-start now?

Lets be willing to face the facts, as far as FPS games go, point and click cannot be beat. Forcing players (even if it's all players, as to level the playing field) to play with a handicap just pushes them away.
In other words; you can't be the game's best player. You can only be the game's best player, on the PS3. Why settle for the asterisk?
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