|The long-in-development force-feedback PC game device Novint Falcon is a good idea in theory, but without actual support from games there's not a whole lot you can do with it. Good news though, since Valve just announced support with the controller for PC versions of The Orange Box, Counter-Strike: Source, the Half-Life 2 series, Team Fortress 2, Portal and Left 4 Dead. With the pistol grip accessory it'll be fine for every game, but what we really have hopes for is fiddling around with that gravity gun and feeling the force feedback with it.|
You have no idea how excited this makes me. The Falcon is the single coolest controller I've ever heard of. Now that it has Valve support I'm definitely gonna buy one as soon as I get some cash freed up.
From a great Ars Technica review I previously posted (I highly suggest reading the whole review)
HaptX Life 2 is a free mod that adds support for the Novint Falcon to Half-Life 2 and Episode One. This is a good way to show how the Falcon can work with big-name, well-known properties, and the integration is impressive. When you fire the shotgun, the orb kicks in your hand; it's impossible to fire any fully-automatic weapon for more than short bursts while keeping your aim in one place. This is interesting, because the game suddenly becomes much more tacticalâ€”you have to think about what weapon you're using, and aiming is much more difficult. I mean that in a good way; this feels more real in many ways. Being in a gunfight and trying to keep a bead on your targets while firing the SMG, feeling the gun buck in your hand and wanting to pull up is amazing. You'll also feel explosions and know from where bullets are coming at you. Suddenly touch becomes a way to gain intelligence about your surroundings and discover where threats are coming from. [...]
While the Half-Life 2 mod showed what could happen in a first-person shooter with the Falcon, Penumbra offers a much slower, in-depth use of the technology. When you pick up a rock, for instance, the rock has weight. When you walk with it, you can feel its inertia. You have to strain to pick it up and slam it into a frozen hatch to knock the ice off it, allowing you to enter. Doors have weight, and some take more effort to open than others. In low-light situations, you can navigate the game simply by touch. It's an amazing experience.