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Microsoft Debuts Full-Body Controller-less Gaming At E3

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the just-don't-throw-yourself-through-the-tv dept.

Input Devices 242

quintin3265 writes "At today's Electronic Entertainment Expo press briefing, Microsoft unveiled Project Natal, a technology that eliminates the controller from gaming on the Xbox 360. In one demo, a player used her arms and legs to hit balls in an attempt to destroy a brick wall, and in another game, an employee threw virtual "paint" on a canvas to create a painting, even drawing an elephant using a silhouette feature. An accompanying video also demonstrated automatic login using facial recognition, videoconferencing with other Xbox Live members, and participating in a gameshow against another family through the Internet using speech recognition."

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Interestingly enough, (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28174769)

I am skeptical of the claim that voluntarily pedophilia harms children. The arguments that it causes harm seem to be based on cases which aren't voluntary, which are then stretched by parents who are horrified by the idea that their little baby is maturing.

Activator (5, Interesting)

Zero_DgZ (1047348) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174789)

Does anyone else remember the "Activator" controller for the Genesis/SNES? This sounds like an echo of that concept, but with updated technology that might actualy, you know... work.

Everything old is new again. Around and around we go...

Re:Activator (2, Informative)

bladx (816461) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174979)

Ah ha ha... the "Activator"
The facial expressions of the guys in the video is almost equally as funny;

http://www.destructoid.com/sega-activator-the-crappiest-game-peripheral-26148.phtml [destructoid.com]

Re:Activator (0, Redundant)

bladx (816461) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174995)

*are almost equally as funny

Re:Activator (3, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174987)

This sounds like an echo of that concept, but with updated technology that might actualy, you know... work.

The concept of "moving your body to make stuff happen" isn't novel, no. IMHO the value of the concept is beyond question, it's purely a matter of execution - i.e. whether it works. It would seemingly be extremely difficult to get the latency low enough. If the latency is low, even if the motion tracking is fairly crude, they should be able to use it to make a DDR "dance pad" (without the pad) that doesn't wear out and break. But heck, if it worked well enough, they could take all the electronics out of a normal gamepad and just watch your fingers instead. (I'm sure it doesn't have that level of acuity though).

Re:Activator (5, Informative)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175467)

Everything old is new again. Around and around we go...

No kidding. "Full-Body Controller-less Gaming" has already been invented. It's called "sport".

Re:Activator (2, Insightful)

duiu (1480325) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175681)

Everything old is new again. Around and around we go...

No kidding. "Full-Body Controller-less Gaming" has already been invented. It's called "sport".

Because I can get together with some friends and play a real game of Family Feud on the spot, without having to come up with categories and such first, just by going outside and getting a ball.

Re:Activator (4, Funny)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 5 years ago | (#28176039)

No kidding. "Full-Body Controller-less Gaming" has already been invented. It's called "sport".

Or, if you're into FPS, it's called "murderous office rampage."

Re:Activator (4, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175499)

"Everything old is new again."

Well it isn't a surprise. A lot of these concepts are things people have wanted forever. The problem was that the technology to make them work well was prohibitively expensive if even available. The Powerglove is a good example. It was a piece of shit, but there were and are high end controllers like that which work well. It just would have been $2000 to make.

So it is no surprise that with more advanced technology, there is a resurgence. Now that the shit actually works, people want to try it.

Re:Activator (1)

Skuld-Chan (302449) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175511)

I dunno - the demo I saw - even if it was half as good its a major leap forward in motion control and capture.

Re:Activator (4, Insightful)

MooseMuffin (799896) | more than 4 years ago | (#28175813)

From purely a tech perspective, it's pretty cool. The facial recognition to login and being able to control the dashboard by waving your hands was impressive. Ultimately though, much like the Wii, I don't think this will lead to many games that will interest me. Maybe even less so than the Wii, since the wiimote at least had buttons.

Interactive Dance! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28174793)

In the late 1990's we'd always go to experimental installations and do the "interactive dance" where we'd jump and wave our arms around and look ape-shit crazy.... so I'm just waiting for the youtube videos shot from the perspective of the X-Box aimed at the players who look, well, like rather foolish jumping around and leaning and such...

Re:Interactive Dance! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28174971)

Right, you mean the videos of people playing DDR. I think you can find them on youtube now if you search for DDR.

too much work (5, Insightful)

MooseTick (895855) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174803)

This sounds good, but not the end all. The Wii controller can make things fun, but anyone who has used it much know how tiring it can be to have to stand or use full body motions for games for an extended period. Sometimes I just want to veg out on the couch and play a game. If I have to flail my arms all over the place I'm going to often consider it more work than fun.

Re:too much work (4, Funny)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174849)

Well, then when you feel lazy, feel free to look like a toolbox [penny-arcade.com] . ;)

Re:too much work (5, Interesting)

TornCityVenz (1123185) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174871)

The idea you have to get up and move...and even get tired is actually a selling point, just look at the sells of the Eyetoy for play station...or even more to the point the Wii fit. There are a lot of gamers who could stand a bit more activity, and once you get past a certain point it's just embarrassing to go to a gym..at least some can get a bit of exercise in the privacy of their own home.

Re:too much work (5, Interesting)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175037)

Back when DDR first came out, one of my friends from high school bought it, and started playing it for 30-60 minutes every day.

In about 4 months, he went from a 220-lb pudgy kid, to a 170-lb lean, muscular guy. It was hugely impressive!

Re:too much work (2, Funny)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175161)

Back when DDR first came out, one of my friends...went from a 220-lb pudgy kid, to a 170-lb lean, muscular guy. It was hugely impressive!

Yeah, trying to make music on a RAM chip can do that to you. You should be a pal and buy him an ocarina.

Re:too much work (5, Funny)

Trouvist (958280) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175237)

And I'm entirely certain if you had asked him to dance at Prom or Homecoming he would have started hopping up and down moving his legs back and forth to the pace of the song...

Re:too much work (2, Interesting)

sponga (739683) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175525)

Back on my old Nintendo mat we used to run miles on that thing doing the track meets and other olympic stuff.

Forgot the name of that game, but you gotta hand it to Nintendo for the stuff they put out from the mat to the duck hunter gun to the bazooka in SNES to Wii.

Re:too much work (2, Insightful)

quintin3265 (1552941) | more than 4 years ago | (#28175821)

DDR is great. I played it all the time and never understood why it became unpopular. What does Guitar Hero have that DDR did not? Especially the "cool" factor - people get amazed when you jump around and pass a song on DDR, but playing a guitar just looks.. boring.

Re:too much work (1)

_Shorty-dammit (555739) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175125)

Maybe it's a selling point for you, but not for me. If I want exercise I'll go exercise. When I feel like playing a video game, I don't feel like exercising. Or else I would go exercise. When I feel like playing a video game, I want to play a video game. If someone wants to play a racing game, what do you tell them? Stop being a pussy and go get in your car and drive real fast everywhere?

Ultimate Jedi Knight Interface (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175143)

Spielberg is working with MS on this, but I think Lucas would be a better fit. I for one would LOVE a Jedi Knight-like game where you could run through forests and ruins and ships, actually running on a treadmill surface, jump using its programmed-resistance semi-trampoline qualities, jumping higher as your force powers increase and the surface resistance is lowered, etc.

But since it's just another tool of microsoft's monopoly, I'll have to wait 'til it becomes commoditised. No worries though, logitech will make a higher-quality version anyway, once the time is right for this to go mainstream. By then, it'll be the year of the linux HUD anyway.

Re:Ultimate Jedi Knight Interface (2, Informative)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175373)

Sure, it would be fun... but the controller would also cost over $500 and take up half your living room. I'm not sure there is a big home market for devices like that. For arcades, the insurance and maintenance would be problematic. Hmm... a power-jump inside a planetarium-style dome with 8 RGB projectors would make a really fun game, but again -- $$$.

Re:Ultimate Jedi Knight Interface (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175789)

Spielberg is working with MS on this, but I think Lucas would be a better fit....

Yeah, how?

Small furry animals that can be marketed by the bazillions?

Some dumbass backwookds Jamaican salamander popping up all over the place?

Face it: Lucas got shit-lucky ONCE, and has milked it for all it's worth.

Not the best example (1)

Bill_Royle (639563) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175427)

Unit sales don't automatically equal usability.

I'd agree with that statement if not for the fact that I've got a Wii Fit board sitting in the garage gathering dust. It was fun for a week or so, but it didn't endure as an enjoyable thing to do.

Perhaps if I was overweight I would be more motivated to use it, but it became more of a chore than fun. That's not a good indictment of a game console / hardware accessory.

Re:too much work (1)

bughunter (10093) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175111)

While I agree with your sentiment entirely, I wonder if you know what that sounds like to someone athletic like my wife?

"Real sex can be fun, but anyone who has engaged in it much knows how tiring it can be to have to stand or use full body motions for an extended period to achieve orgasm. Sometimes I just want to lock myself in my office with my pr0n and rub one out. If I have to hump and thrust all over the place, I'm gonna often consider it more work than fun."

(Sorry. I enjoy pr0n as much as the next guy. And I've put in my time vegging on the couch with an NES... but it's the first thing I thought of.)

Re:too much work (2, Funny)

FunkSoulBrother (140893) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175783)

For a guy with a wife, you should be more cognizent of the fact that it is indeed desireable (on occasion) to rub one to Teens in Tight Jeans 2.

Re:too much work (1)

Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175381)

Dont worry, All 360's will still ship with the "veg out" controller... AKA 360 wireless controller

Hi, Sony! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28174839)

Is this not the exact same thing as the PS2 had, in the Eyetoy?

Re:Hi, Sony! (1)

acrobg (1175095) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174977)

I remember playing with the PS2 eyetoy back in 2003 at SIGGRAPH in San Diego in the emerging technologies room. Not too sure why it didn't catch on too well; it was a lot of fun. Maybe Microsoft's version will fair better.

Re:Hi, Sony! (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175289)

The eyetoy was just a USB camera, commonly known as a "webcam". I believe it relied on the CPU of the console to interpret the picture. It wasn't terribly accurate, and you had to maintain the correct distance to the camera and make sure you stayed in frame. And of course, it worked a lot better if there was high contrast between you and your background. That being said, the PS3 should have had plenty of horsepower to do something like this well. Intel was demonstrating game controllers like this 10 years ago. Camera control is fun for kids and console neophytes; it is just a question of writing good software to handle it. I'm surprised that this isn't available on newer consoles.

Re:Hi, Sony! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175303)

It will fair better because Microsoft is not stupid and knows how to sell something, at least compared to Sony that has some nice stuff that most people never heard about.
Killzone vs Halo for example, they're both at the same level, except that no one ever heard of Killzone. Halo had time to build a userbase sure, but you know people heard about it because they could even get halo figures at McDonalds. M$ has deep pockets but it also understands marketing.

how? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28174845)

Does anyone know how it tracks your movement? I assume that it requires no special clothing, so what does it detect?

Re:how? (4, Interesting)

Pinky's Brain (1158667) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175347)

Well, the rumour was that they were going to use 3DV's cameras. Which essentially measure depth for each pixel, making it much easier to determine pose.

Re:how? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175753)

Microsoft bought 3DV for this reason.

Full body power glove (4, Funny)

BigJClark (1226554) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174861)


The full body power glove. This one isn't doomed to failure. Not at all..

Re:Full body power glove (1)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175047)

It's so bad...

Re:Full body power glove (3, Funny)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175199)

Not a power glove, still... I won't take anything "full body" from Microsoft. Ever.

There's been a number of games like this. (1)

argent (18001) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174877)

I've seen a number of games like this, including one that came with a webcam I bought a couple of years ago. It let you "play" drums displayed on the screen by whaling about with your hands.

WOOT! GOODBY PRETENDO (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28174879)

Pretendo has ran out of actual gimmicks. Their substandard shit will once again trail Sony and Microsoft. The pretendo piss will have substandard controllers, low Vga resolution, and a processor that was high tech in the 1990s. It has been and always will be a fact the X-Box 360 and Playstation 3 will give you 1080 while pretendo has and always will give you piss as in piss on you. They will fall very soon. The plus side to that is there will no longer will be anyone to post on shitdot(News for Fucktarded Sheeple like spun and his numerous sockpuppets like twitter, erris, mactrope, etc.) anymore.

GO AHEAD FUCKING FLAME AWAY!

It's alright until.. (3, Insightful)

gilesjuk (604902) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174923)

I'm sure it will work fine for some games, that is until someone walks behind you or moves around in the background to ruin your game.

Also, multiplayer will require a huge room and lots of sensors. But perhaps Microsoft expects people to play online, a console for people with no real friends.

Re:It's alright until.. (4, Insightful)

Leafheart (1120885) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174993)

But perhaps Microsoft expects people to play online, a console for people with no real friends.

That's one hell of a big market there. And always go for the biggest market.

Re:It's alright until.. (1)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 5 years ago | (#28174997)

The camera has depth perception. So it happily will ignore anything behind you. Unless it's in your personal bubble.

Re:It's alright until.. (1)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175279)

But perhaps Microsoft expects people to play online, a console for people with no real friends.

The Wii aside, it seems consoles are already heading in this direction. I was rather disappointed at the number of decent head-to-head or co-op games using split screen on the newer consoles. Instead, many games seem to have gone the way of one-player-per-console, playing online.

Re:It's alright until.. (1)

eebra82 (907996) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175417)

I'm sure it will work fine for some games, that is until someone walks behind you or moves around in the background to ruin your game. Also, multiplayer will require a huge room and lots of sensors. But perhaps Microsoft expects people to play online, a console for people with no real friends.

Why are you bashing a product you haven't tried yet? I'm sure they've spent a lot of time and effort to make this work in a good way, similar to what Nintendo did with the Wiimote.

I'll admit that I love my PlayStation 3 and I don't own an Xbox 360, but this is a very tempting product if it gets enough games to support it with.

Last but not least, I doubt that the controller will be so unintelligent that it cannot distinguish you from other people in the background in the same way that it can tell the difference in multiplayer, which it is told to support. That is, of course, unless someone jerks around right behind you and sabotages your game. But that's nothing you can blame MS for.

I think the bigger announcement... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175023)

...was that MS got Konami to make a 360 exclusive Metal Gear Solid franchise.

http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/988/988687p1.html [ign.com]

If /. is going to report anything about MS at E3 this was probably the biggest news at the conference.

Re:I think the bigger announcement... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175109)

Give it up fanboy, it's not an exclusive. It's not even a real MSG game, just a spin-off. It's is not even the first time "MSG" has been used to cash in mediocre titles elsewhere.

Re:I think the bigger announcement... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175295)

It's is not even the first time "MSG" has been used to cash in mediocre titles

Yeah - like Metal Gear Solid 4.

Re:I think the bigger announcement... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175395)

Awww, poor baby.

Did your dreams of a downgraded to work on the wimpy RRoD box just get crushed today with this stupid Raiden action game?

Re:I think the bigger announcement... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175515)

Had no such dreams, will avoid the stupid Raiden action game just as I avoided the stupid Snake action game for PS3.

Re:I think the bigger announcement... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175715)

Good liddle Xbox!

Now roll over!

You parroted that MGS4 for Xbox 360 damage control 'never wanted it anyone' line just perfectly!

Here's a treat. Good boy!

Re:I think the bigger announcement... (1)

grapeape (137008) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175903)

geez how about a valium? Its a freakin toy...who cares. You talk about damage control but have been ranting like a jilted lover. Its a MGS game and its going to be on everything...so what?

Re:I think the bigger announcement... (1)

MediaStreams (1461187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175985)

"who cares"

The gaming media and forums have been filled with desperate Xbox fans begging for a Metal Gear Solid game for two years now. Creating fake rumors, endless and inane speculation claiming proof.

Yeah, 'who cares'.

This was devastating news to Xbox fans who thought they would be getting a real Metal Gear game. Instead it's just a Devil May Cry action game with Raiden.

Not A Real Metal Gear Game (5, Informative)

MediaStreams (1461187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175235)

1. Kojima isn't directing the game

2. It's not a real Metal Gear game, just an action game with Raiden

3. It's multiplatform - PS3,PC, and Xbox 360

Even worse, just an hour after the Microsoft press conference an interview with Kojima quoted him essentially disowning the game.

 

Seriously guys (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175029)

Everyone's going to compare this to the EyeToy and whatnot but the fact is, if you dismiss this so easily you're either ignorant or a troll. The designers behind the EyeToy couldn't even dream of implementing motion sensitivity and depth perception like Microsoft has going here. It can track multiple people at one time (and ignore people who aren't in the game), track your body movement AND MAP IT TO A CHARACTER IN THE GAME, all kinds of freaky shit. To compare it to the EyeToy or to say it's not as advanced as the Wii is simply stupid.

Re:Seriously guys (3, Insightful)

Kuukai (865890) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175337)

The EyeToy/PlayStation Eye has had some pretty amazing demos too, although I think you're right to point out that depth perception is new. This is basically two EyeToys, plus some decent software taking advantage of that fact. I think the Achilles' heel of this kind of technology is the install base, though. The launch will be neat, but more developers aren't going to sign on unless it's wildly popular. You could do an awful lot more with the PlayStation Eye, too, but interest always wanes after E3. I'm not against Natal (except for the name), I hope it succeeds, but history doesn't seem to be on its side...

I gotta hand it to Microsoft (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175045)

They actually did pretty well this year. This Natal thing looks like it could one-up Nintendo.

marketed to whom? (1)

CheshireFerk-o (412142) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175063)

this may have worked when the 360 first came out to compete wit wii, but as of now i dont really think the installed 360 userbase has any want for this. if they wanted motion control wouldnt they buy a wii? sure its a cool technology but i dont forsee the gamerscore whores actually getting up and doing motion control, too much effort. i have a wii and a pc for gaming, perhaps if m$ didnt charge to play games online i would have a 360, and i wouldnt be intrested in motion control.

Exercise? (4, Funny)

_Shorty-dammit (555739) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175083)

If I wanted to exercise I wouldn't be playing video games.

Re:Exercise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175551)

Why not? That's the whole point, mix them together... the fun of video games + exercise = perfect virtual experience

Re:Exercise? (0, Redundant)

_Shorty-dammit (555739) | more than 5 years ago | (#28176179)

You are wrong.

Finally they can make a slashdot oriented game (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175105)

Pelvic thrust supremacy!

Holy xbox-mote, Batman! (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175159)

That sounds really amazingly, fantastically, wonderfully, beautifully horrible.

Not impressed... yet. (4, Insightful)

Chris Pimlott (16212) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175193)

Hmm...

In one demo, a player used her arms and legs to hit balls in an attempt to destroy a brick wall, and in another game, an employee threw virtual "paint" on a canvas to create a painting, even drawing an elephant using a silhouette feature.

Sounds great, but I'd be much more impressed if they had a live demo with random untrained people. Even in the demo video [youtube.com] , you can see a noticeable input lag, particular when the guy does his "victory dance" at around 27 seconds.

The devil is in the details with these things, Microsoft is certainly not the first to try at something like this.

Re:Not impressed... yet. (5, Interesting)

citizenr (871508) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175835)

Its not an input lag, the demo is staged. You can see it in couple of places where actors didnt replay exact moves from the screen. Whole "demo" is a wishful thinking.

Full body? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175217)

Does that make it a WiiWii controller?

What we need is.... (2, Funny)

need4mospd (1146215) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175225)

What we really need is a gun that we could use to hunt ducks. I bet that would sell a lot more than this silly body controller....

I hate this new trend in gaming (1, Insightful)

jaxtherat (1165473) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175243)

Do not want!

Seriously, as someone who has been gaming for over 17 years, most of that on PC I don't want my games and their systems dumbed down so that someone's mom can maybe enjoy splattering paint against the wall. I *enjoy* my games being complex, having a learning curve, and not simply something where I flail my arms wildly and stuff happens. If this kind of crap is the future of gaming, say goodbye to serious adult gaming, as everything will be Nintendoo Fisher Price crap, and dumbed down and made cute to appeal to a bigger target market.

Get off my lawn!

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175323)

Bah humfuck, "core" games are never going to go away you goddamn idiot.

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175507)

It's not an all or nothing scenario.
I don't know about you, but when I play games, I'm generally 3 meters away from the TV, and just like everyone else, I have a TV bigger than it has to be.

This means that a character meant to break the fourth wall will often be looking slightly off from where I'm sitting.

I agree that the demos they showed aren't really the stuff I'd want to play, but imagine the technology used to further the immersion of other great games.
I've no idea what the resolution of the camera is, nor how detailed, but let's imagine this used with BF1943 or another upcoming shooter.

Great; you've got the sniper rifle.
How do I zoom in again? Wouldn't squinting be so much easier?

That's just the first of many ideas that popped into my mind when I saw the demo.

Technology has never been about what the creator wants you to use it for, it's about what YOU can use it for.

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (1)

tuffy (10202) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175547)

Sorry, but the "dumbed down" stuff has been dominating ever since Computer Space lost out to Pong. Even in the PC realm, more accessible titles like "the Sims" dominates the latest complicated, high learning curve title. But the hardcore titles are still around, so why worry?

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175685)

More importantly, this dumbed down crap like movie tie-in games, Bratz, Petz, and so on cost little to develop and bring in tons of money, allowing big publishers to risk hardcore titles like Dead Space that might not turn a profit.

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (1)

EventHorizon_pc (1306663) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175587)

Agreed. We need to move away from games that have you faking seizures in front of your TV and back to games that actually produce real ones!

Promptly remove yourself from the grassy portion of my yard!

p.s. Wouldn't it be great if this replaced "goodbye" for old people in the future? Reminds me of the "smell ya later" episode of the Simpsons. "Smell ya later, Bart. Smell ya later, forever..."

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175737)

You want adult gaming...?
This technology can provide adult gaming, and I'm certainly looking forward to it ;)

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (3, Insightful)

PaganRitual (551879) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175905)

I agree with the sentiment about wanting complex games and dislike this tech, but I think you're being a bit dramatic.

This sort of gaming is - from my big gaming nerd point of view - pretty gimmicky, but there is a market for it, and it will be pursued. And you've gotta appreciate that and roll with it.

What does concern me is when developers, whether it be because someone had a brain fade, or because the people in control of the money see that this sort of thing is 'popular', decide that motion technology needs to be shoehorned into games for which it completely doesn't suit. And to date there hasn't been a platform for which this hasn't happened. Ninja Gaiden Sigma on PS3, the 'hardest of the hardcore' game, requires you to shake the controller to increase the strength of your magic attacks. Uncharted makes you balance the controller to navigate narrow log paths. The DS has plenty of games that push touch screen or motion controls where it's not required. The developers of Nanostray decided that while you're trying to control a ship in a shoot-em up, it would be a great idea to make you have to use the touch screen to change weapons, instead of one of the four free buttons that have no use in the game. Not even as an alternative option.

Speaking of which, the Wii is the worst one for this sort of thing, and not just because there are games for which there is no option for a standard control set (Excite Truck, I'm looking at you), but because it's inexplicably attracts games which would have otherwise been deemed as more approching the 'hardcore' edge of the gaming spectrum. And yes, I'm specifically talking Tastunoko vs Capcom. And Monster Hunter Tri. How these games came to be released for the Wii over the PS3 I'll never understand. Maybe that's a slightly off-topic point, but it's frustrating, as a gamer, to watch these games go to a platform that won't allow them to reach their full potential, whether it be with tech, or with player base.

The 360, for all it's faults, is the last bastion of guaranteed normal, non gimmicky gaming. And the concern now is not your over-the-top assessment that this is the death of complex games, because it's obviously not going to be, but that this sort of thing is pushed out to a standard controller, and that developers will decide that it's a good idea to force in stupid motion sensitive crap into games that otherwise don't need it. If the motion sensitive tech could stay completely separate to the normal, 'proper' games, then everyone would be happy. As it stands the only people with a chance of being put offside are the ... damnit, is there another word that can be used to describe the ... 'hardcore' style of gamer, other than hardcore*? I hate having to use the word, and having to describe games as 'normal', or 'proper', but there seems to be no way around it.

(someone is frantically clicking reply trying to be the first to quote me and reply with, 'loser'?)

Re:I hate this new trend in gaming (1)

pizzach (1011925) | more than 5 years ago | (#28176185)

I *enjoy* my games being complex, having a learning curve, and not simply something where I flail my arms wildly and stuff happens.

While a lot of people say this, I wonder what percent say it because they don't want to throw away the time invested into something complicated and start over again. When you get to the age that a lot of these hardcore people are at, if the jump button is somewhere else than usual, it's flat out wrong to them.

Through the years I have traditionally enjoyed the different Nintendo controllers for both their strengths and weaknesses. Developers using them creatively is part of the art-form and had helped keep things interesting. I also enjoyed playing Mario Kart upside-down to up the challenge. :-p Still haven't upgraded from my GameCube yet though.

Note to self: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175293)

If silhouette tool yields an elephant, it is time to lose some weight.

Full Body??? (0, Troll)

swanzilla (1458281) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175305)

How full is full-body? Like taint-full-body? That's just wrong.

Targeted at Wii Users (3, Insightful)

BagOBones (574735) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175321)

Other than figuring out how much you weigh this ONE accessory seems to be able to handle the functions of the WiiMote, Nunchuck, BalanceBoard and Motion Plus, without you having to purchase 4 of each and all the batteries to run them.
O and it ads a camera with mic / voice support. You can get a mic for the Wii now as well but I think animal crossing is the only game that supports it so far.

Re:Targeted at Wii Users (1)

sancho_pancho (643406) | more than 4 years ago | (#28175795)

The only Wii function that it won't be able to copy is the ridiculous number of people that own it.

Be prepared for lawsuits (2, Interesting)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175331)

I did the math on this. Even if you make a full body suit capture or camera object recognition of the body it doesn't matter. Once you throw on the VR goggles, people may get into the game too much. People get hurt with the wii just moving their arms. Imagine the carnage of people jumping around with their eyes covered!

Porn? (4, Funny)

freedom_india (780002) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175553)

Forget carnage and hurt.
Iam thinking about Porn.
Imagine people playing Porn with Alba or Simpson in VR and in their excitement let their goo fly around!
Hallelujah!!!

Project Natal??? (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175401)

Presumably this was the successor to "Project Fetal"?

Microsoft's taste of names (1)

microbee (682094) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175439)

So after Bing, there is Natal. I wonder how it's going to be translated into Chinese (hint: it sounds like a part of a female body).

Bye Bye PS3 and Wii (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175585)

That does it. Microsoft just won the console wars.

!demo (2, Funny)

nog_lorp (896553) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175615)

I don't know about you guys, but that looks strongly like a product of the marketing department, not a "set up the box and get a camera" style demo. Complete with cheesy clapping and cheering from the people on the couch.

Re:!demo (1)

lumpenprole (114780) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175723)

Nah. I've played this game. I'm working on this project (thank god I can talk about it) and that's fairly accurate. They're improving the tracking on this thing on a weekly basis and it's pretty playable now. I'm not sure whether this is going to set the world on fire or not, but what you saw being played on stage is the real deal.

Swordfighting. (2)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175619)

I've waited for years for a decent swordfighting game. That doesn't have to use a keyboard or controller that's obviously not suited for actually controlling the sword movements themselves. It would be awesome to be able to simply move your arm like you would a sword... or better yet, put a sword* in your hand and use that.

* Not sharp, of course. Think of the children.

Re:Swordfighting. (1)

Tetsujin (103070) | more than 4 years ago | (#28175817)

I've waited for years for a decent swordfighting game. That doesn't have to use a keyboard or controller that's obviously not suited for actually controlling the sword movements themselves.

Here's the thing about that...

You can sort of get that now on the Wii (we finally got our lightsaber game...), but - because of limitations in the Wii remote, it's not good at picking up subtle movements - and it can't really read position at all unless the camera in the remote can see the beacons - and even then it still needs a decent reading from the accelerometer to get its orientation in order to know whether it's upside-down and pointed above the screen, or right-side-up and pointed at it... So the accuracy necessarily drops while the remote is moving... This seriously limits the extent to which the game can simply mirror your movements as a viable means of game control.

Now, with a better sensor system, you have another problem - it's still just a game, the players don't really know how to sword-fight. That means the full range of motions one might pursue are simplified down to a few recognized gestures which are used to activate common and useful commands. When you factor in the limitations in the input technology, plus the fact that players aren't getting any kind of force feedback, it's hard to imagine a game based on a more direct mapping of input to action being successful...

Re:Swordfighting. (3, Insightful)

Garrett Fox (970174) | more than 5 years ago | (#28176041)

Now, with a better sensor system, you have another problem - it's still just a game, the players don't really know how to sword-fight.

I thought that increased realism was part of the point, though. I'd be interested in a swordfighting game that required learning something resembling a real-world skill, so that I'm prepared to... uh, battle skeleton warriors. More seriously, it seems like there's new gameplay to be found if I have to actually try different parries and attacks instead of just hitting Attack, or even High/Low Attack like in a Street Fighter game. If people don't really want anything resembling a realistic experience, why bother with a Wiimote-style controller at all instead of an old-fashioned controller? I guess the test of this reasoning is, would there be a market for a Guitar Hero imitator where the skills carry over somewhat to actual guitar, instead of being basically Simon with music?

The Island (1)

Lanforod (1344011) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175643)

So perhaps sometime soon we'll see a Xbox game similar to the one showcased in "The Island" where Jordan Two Delta kicked Lincoln Six Echo's ass in a hand to hand combat virtual game? I would love to see that!

I can't wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28175713)

Imagine a fighting game with this tech, you and your friends can get together and duke it out in the living room.

Re:I can't wait... (1)

f1r3f0g (879606) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175771)

And being a Microsoft product, it should include chair throwing.

Will not beat Commodores finest ... (1)

yossarianuk (1402187) | more than 5 years ago | (#28175847)

Surely will not be as fun as

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joyboard [wikipedia.org]
The concept sounds fun - for about 10 minutes...

Will it be standard? (5, Insightful)

SoftwareArtist (1472499) | more than 5 years ago | (#28176089)

There's a long history of innovative, unconventional game controllers. Most of them are nothing more than interesting historical footnotes. Few people bought them and few games used them.

What makes the Wiimote different is that it's the standard controller for the console. It comes bundled with every single console sold. That's why game developers actually use it: they aren't restricting their market.

If Microsoft decides to bundle this thing with every Xbox sold, then it's a big deal. If it's an optional accessory that you have to buy separately, then it's another historical footnote.

Brilliant! (1)

Trogre (513942) | more than 5 years ago | (#28176115)

This innovative product could revolutionise gaming. Congratulations Microsoft, you've done it again!

(goes back to playing with Eyetoy)

Methinks, Wii bits a Wii bit late. -nt (1)

lordsid (629982) | more than 5 years ago | (#28176209)

nt
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