Home / Gear Impressions: Novint Falcon 3-D Force-Feedback Controller, Part 1

Gear Impressions: Novint Falcon 3-D Force-Feedback Controller, Part 1

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For so long, the control of choice on the PC has been the old keyboard and mouse. Few other controllers have successfully appeared, especially those that have been experimental like gyro mice.

That was, until now. Debuting on September 18th for $240, and already available on the company Web site for only $199, the Novint Falcon Force-Feedback Controller is a remarkable piece of technology, and one that might just change the way that some PC games are played… forever.

I happened to be lucky enough to play this on the Falcon Swoop Tour as Bowling Green State University — home of the Falcons, ironically — happened to be one of the 30-plus stops on the tour. Below is some more info on the controller and my impressions.

The Hardware

How does it work? The Falcon utilizes force-feedback technology that lets you move in three dimensions. Pushing forward on the Falcon, which you grip by the handle on the front that is attached to three movable arms, moves the cursor forward in the 3-D field. Moving it up and down or side-to-side moves the cursor in the same direction, and pressing down a button lets you grabs on to objects or perform actions, like shooting a gun or swinging a crowbar. On top of that, the controller features force-feedback, allowing you to feel things like differences in texture, tension and other forces. It’s a pretty impressive piece of technology, but how does it do in the field?

Continue reading in part two.

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About Brian Szabelski