The patent was published last month and states that “It would be desirable if a user could use an inexpensive, simple and non-electronic device as a video game peripheral”. The patent then goes on to describe a method in which a user could use an object such as a banana, mug, pen or a glass as a controller.
This would be used in conjunction with a camera, which has images of the items in a users hand and tracks the items that you’re holding. It’s hard to know how this would be done, but it’s assumed that the camera would know the rough dimensions and shape of a banana, and would automatically pickup where on the banana is being touched. It’s said that the banana could also have inputs (such as the face buttons of a PlayStation controller) displayed on the item using a VR headset or the like.
The application also talks about the banana being moved in a 3D space, which could result in the banana being turned resulting in your character moving on screen or the movement of a camera. It’s crazy, but actually makes sense when you think about it.
If the thought of using one banana wasn’t cool enough for you, the patent also discusses using two objects as controllers, and then shows images of dual-wielding bananas. The likelihood of this existing is probably low, but I could see some kind of weird Eye-Toy like software that doesn’t require the use of new controllers, but rather uses every day objects around your home.
Oddly enough, New Zealand Twitch streamer Rudeism has used Bananas as controllers to play games before (using a more complex method than this patent suggests). You can see how that worked out below:
In more realistic news, Gameindustry.Biz also showed off a look at the most recent VR controller patent, which again, probably looks a little bit unrealistic, but could give us our first look at what Sony is going for. There’s also a lot of references to finger tracking in a lot of patent applications, which actually works a lot better than I expected on the Oculus Quest 2, so I think it’s a new-brainer here.
There’s one thing for certain, I don’t think Sony is just going to replicate what Facebook has done with the Oculus Quest 2. They’ll want to be using PlayStation VR 2 as a way to get new gamers in, which would probably rely on some crazy ideas that are outside of the norm.