The Playstation and the Wii were designed to be two very different gaming consoles, so it is no wonder that the primary controllers for each console are also very different from each other. The Sixaxis controller was the official controller for the Sony PS3 until it was replaced by the Dualshock 3, and the Wii remote is the official controller for the Nintendo Wii. The two controllers are meant to cater to very different types of gameplay, hence the differences between them, although some basic functionality remains the same.
Buttons And Direction Keys
The PS3 controller is probably the type of controller that most people would tend to associate with console gaming. The image of the typical console gamer is usually someone sitting on a couch, gripping a controller with two hands, one thumb on an analog joystick or direction pad and the other on a second analog control or various buttons. This is very much what the PS3 controller layout is like, whereas the Wii remote has opted for a different layout.
First and foremost, the Wii remote is meant to be used straight up in the player’s hand, instead of held horizontally across two hands like the Playstation controller. While there is a direction pad on the Wii controller and also “A” and “B” buttons, they are laid out in a straight vertical line so that players can manipulate them with one hand.
Both the Sixaxis controller and Wii controller are able to sense a player’s motion, thus adding a new dimension to gameplay. The Sixaxis controller actually gets its name from its ability to sense motion, and was advertised as offering players “six axes of freedom” in reference to its ability to sense motion in 3 dimensions, thus along six axes of movement. The Wii controller, on the other hand, operates using a sophisticated accelerometer, and is not only able to sense motion in 3 dimensions, but it is able to sense even rapid motion accurately and judge the speed and acceleration of players’ movements.
The motion sensing capabilities of the Wii controller form the basis of the gameplay on the Wii console, whereas with the Playstation, the analog controls still form the basis of gameplay, and the motion sensing capability is used in games almost as an afterthought. This is also due to the fact that not all Playstation controllers have motion sensing capabilities, whereas all Wii remotes are able to sense motion. Thus motion sensing is incorporated much more heavily into games on the Wii than on the Playstation.
One Part Vs Two Parts
The Sixaxis controller clearly comes in a single part, with one controller that is big enough to fit comfortably in two hands. The Wii remote, on the other hand, is complemented by a part known as the nunchuck. Thus the remote is held in one hand while the nunchuck is held in the other, and the nunchuck is connected to the remote by a long wire. This allows players to make independent motions with each hand, such as when playing a boxing game that requires one hand to block and the other to punch at the same time.