Dual Shock 3 to shake Europe

Sony has officially dated the latest PlayStation 3 controller for the region to beginning July, at a hefty UK price point of £39.99.

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The Dual Shock 3 controller is finally coming to Europe--some three months after America. The vibrating controller will be hitting mainland Europe on July 2 and the UK on July 4, and will require firmware 1.94 to be used. The Dual Shock 3 is fully compatible only with certain games, including Resistance: Fall of Man, Gran Turismo 5 Prologue, and Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. According to Sony, from now on "almost all" games will be able to make use of the Dual Shock 3.

Sony Computer Entertainment president Kaz Hirai confirmed that the controller--which combines the Sixaxis' motion-sensing features and vibration functionality--at the Tokyo Game Show in 2007, saying that at first Sony thought including both vibration and motion-sensing technology "would be too difficult, but they have managed to overcome this difficulty."

It wasn't clear if Hirai was talking about the technical issues of having the two functions happily coexist in one controller or Sony's legal battle with Immersion. Back in 2005, the California-based Immersion Corporation won a legal battle against Sony, after asserting that the Dual Shock 2's rumble feature was based on its technology. The judge ordered Sony to pay $82 million for patent infringement. In 2007, the two companies patched things up and reached a cooperative agreement whereby Sony could use the rumble feature.

Sony assures gamers that they will now be able to "feel the full power of [their] games." However, all this excitement comes at a price--the Dual Shock 3's recommended retail price in the UK will be £39.99--or the same as two Sixaxis controllers. In the US, where the controller was released on April 4, the RRP is $54.99 (£28), and in Japan it is ¥5,500 (£26). Europe, however, looks likely to be hit even harder, with online retailers across the continent charging around €60--equivalent to around £47.

For a list of Dual Shock 3-compatible games from the time when the controller was announced, check out GameSpot's hands-on with the controller.

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