First PS5 hands-on: See DualSense in action right now

(Image credit: Geoff Keighley)

Sony took the wraps off of its innovative DualSense controller for the PS5 a while back, but now we finally have a sense of how the gamepad will feel during actual gameplay. The Game Awards founder Geoff Keighley got an exclusive hands-on with the controller, detailing how features such as haptic feedback and adaptive triggers will work when you're playing games.

Keighley's demo featured Astro's Playroom, a cute 3D platformer that will come pre-loaded on every PS5. The game also seems tailor-made to show off what the DualSense is capable of, making clever use of the pad's microphones and rumble technology to create a uniquely immersive experience.

Keighley seemed especially impressed by the DualSense's speaker, noting that it creates a unique "harmony between the controller, sound and what's happening on PS5." For example, when Keighley walked through a sandstorm in the game, he noted how the sand noises coming out of the controller complemented the growing tension created by the haptic feedback.

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"I've never felt something like this before," said Keighley. 

At one point, Keighley donned a frog suit in the game, which showed off the DualSense's adaptive triggers. The host called out the varying tension he felt while jumping around in the frog suit, simulating the feel of the spring that allowed the character to bounce around. 

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The DualSense will once again feature six degrees of motion control, and the controller's microphone can be used in unique ways (for example, Keighley had to blow on it to activate a part of the game).

As far as weight and feel, Keighley says that the DualSense ways more than the PS4 DualShock 4 controller but "doesn't feel substantially heavier." In fact, he said that the controller's added heft is a good thing, giving it a slighting more ergonomic grip. 

Michael Andronico

Mike Andronico is Senior Writer at CNNUnderscored. He was formerly Managing Editor at Tom's Guide, where he wrote extensively on gaming, as well as running the show on the news front. When not at work, you can usually catch him playing Street Fighter, devouring Twitch streams and trying to convince people that Hawkeye is the best Avenger.