October 11, 2013 | Posted in Reactive Grip™ Hardware | By

Sneak Peek at New Reactive Grip™ Motion Controller

We’ve been working hard this summer and are nearly ready to unveil our new Reactive Grip™ Motion Controller.  In preparation for Kickstarter, we’ve taken all the comments we’ve heard while demoing our previous controller at GDC, and other conferences and meetups, and have used this feedback to improve our next controller design.

The new Reactive Grip™ controller is lighter and slimmer and ergonomically integrates a trigger, thumbstick, and buttons into its design. We have also improved the ergonomics of the device’s handle to provide even better Reactive Grip™ touch feedback. The new controller will also be compatible with the new Sixense STEM tracking system and will have mounting options to use other trackers, such as the Razer Hydra, if desired.

 ReactiveGrip-3x4

ReactiveGrip-wSTEM-400

Controller size clarification – added Oct. 13, 2013

Some folks have also wondered how big the new controller is.  For scale, we’ve added a render to the right that shows the size relative to a hand. Also, the height of the new controller is approximately 7.25 inches (19 cm) as compared to the 11 inch (28 cm) height of the previous orange controller design that we showed at GDC 2013 in March.  The new device is also about half the weight of the older controller.

http://tacticalhaptics.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/ReactiveGrip-New-Old-400T.jpg

http://tacticalhaptics.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/rGrip-transHand.jpg

 

9 Comments

  1. Felix
    October 12, 2013

    That trigger looks interesting, is that two separate buttons within the trigger guard?

    • Tactical Haptics

      Tactical Haptics
      October 12, 2013

      Yes Felix, it’s a trigger and an experimental idea for implementing a bumper button.

  2. hicks12
    October 22, 2013

    Nice update I am so glad you came up with a much more stylish and practical design. May I ask, what is the point in those thin buttons at the top and bottom? They look like equivalent of normal controllers back and start buttons, in my opinion it may be better to have a standard button at the bottom mid point i. E like the Xbox controllers and PS controllers, just a thought:).

    Another question is about your campaign are you going to put up the full kit (stem and Controller?) or will you provide the option for buying just the controllers as if you’re like me then you have already got a 5 pack stem system so I would reuse them. Also can you make sure the battery is removable so we can replace it ourselves.

    Finally the software part, I have no idea on how easy or ddifficult it is to provide support in a game for this technology, can you possibly go over this in your kickstarter video as I think it will help, you need to find a way to give a relatively general and quick fix option for games that don’t support your tech and then provide solid integration when developers get on board.

    All the best guys, I shall be awaiting the kickstarter!

    • Tactical Haptics

      Tactical Haptics
      October 24, 2013

      The button that is on the far side (in terms of the reach of the person’s thumb) of the thumbstick is a “start” button. The center button that is closer to the user is just a button that we’ve been using as the “release” for casting a lure in fishing. It is a convenient location to reach, so we’re considering associating some functional use to this button location. It is just experimental though, so there may be changes before the design is finalized. The bottons on the left and right of the thumbstick are intended to map to the ABXY buttons on an xbox controller.

      Our controllers will be able to use the STEMs that you have gotten from Sixense. Our intial controllers are planned to be wired, so they will not have batteries. Having our initial controllers be wireless represents too much technical and schedule risk for an initial round of prototypes, though we may consider adding wireless communication as a stretch goal.

      Unfortunately, there isn’t a great “back door” solution to make past released games immediately have support to drive the force-torque like feedback of the Reactive Grip controllers. Mods could be done to games (e.g., Left 4 Dead or Skyrim – Elderscrolls), but there needs to be something in the game that communicates information about forces and/or torques for our controller to have something meaningful to feedback to your touch senses. Having access to what the “rumble” feedback is doing isn’t sufficient since it just provides magnitude information and no directional force information.

      Also see the MTBS3D interview that is linked off our “news” page for detailed answers on related questions.

  3. hicks12
    October 25, 2013

    Thanks for the reply I appreciate you taking the time to give me an insightful reply, I will look at that video when I can after work :).

    I understand the point about fishing it makes sense although the main thing for me is that if you’re going to mimick Xbox and PS buttons then it would be wise to keep the same arrangement, simply being that everyone is used to this now. That’s my only reasoning I will buy it regardless and as you said things may change as you investigate the best possible arrangement for yourselves :).

    Regarding the gaming side I thought as much, it’s unfortunate that you cannot simply tap into that very basic feedback output but as you say you cannot make use of this as your tech requires proper information not a rumble haha. Do you have a list of games that you plan to support? I know it would be difficult but if you ever get the opportunity to implement this into battlefield 4 it would be good and even better if it was down to the frostbite engine as a lot of games are going to be using that soon :). Arma3 would be a blast with this though, get working on that if possible ;).

    Apologies I got caught up in the moment of stem, forgot not everything is wireless haha I have watched a couple of videos awhile ago regarding your tech and so forgot some details. I am still interested and fully understand going wired first as it makes it so much easier for you to develop the actual technology rather than wasting precious resources on wireless tech.

    Hopefully in v2 or v3 you can manage it but for now I will appreciate trying out v1 :)

    Don’t forget about publicity when you launch your campaign (I assume still on for end of this month?) write up articles get it ready and try and get BBC interested as that is always a solid win for kickstarters :)

    Good luck!

    • Tactical Haptics

      Tactical Haptics
      October 25, 2013

      Thanks for your understanding @hicks12.

      One thing we’ve also been thinking about is making that middle (nearside button) remappable (able to be remapped to act as one of the harder to reach standard buttons).

      On publicity, we’ve already done a few interviews that will release on the kickstarter launch date, but its been hard to get access to many of the mainstream media folks at Engadget, Gizmodo, and BBC (despite getting coverage from these sites on prior devices I’ve worked on). But, I’ll keep reaching out, giving demos, and sending emails to get the word out… please also share our site and our technology with your friends, colleagues, or anyone else who will listen. =)

      • deandre911
        March 15, 2014

        Hey it would be awesome if you could give me a price range I am not exactly worried too much about it but it would be awesome if I could have an idea of how much I would need to spend compared to your competitors price of 300$. I do not mind if you atleast give me hint like 500$ – 1000 or it would be incredible if it was below 300$ I don’t know.

        - Deandre

  4. deandre911
    March 15, 2014

    Sorry I did not realize you were not competing against stem but just giving a better grip with haptic feedback.

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