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Move Controller  (Source: Joystiq)

Remind You of Anything?  (Source: Joystiq)

Move sub-controller  (Source: Joystiq)
Launch set for fall 2010 for under $100

The video game market is very robust and has been doing well compared to other markets during the poor global economy. When the Nintendo Wii debuted years ago, it quickly became the most popular console due in large part to its innovative motion control. 

Despite Nintendo's early success and exceptional demand for its Wii console, recently sales of the Wii have started to slump significantly. Nintendo profits slumped 23% in Q3 in part due to softening demand for the Wii. Sony tried with the initial launch of the PS3 console to offer its own motion control via its standard game controllers, but the feature was ignored by many gamers and developers. Sony has been talking about its upcoming motion controller that was initially expected to hit store shelves this spring and was delayed until the fall for a while now. The reason for the delay according to reports at the time was to give game developers a chance to ready more software that would work with the new motion controller.

Sony has now gone official with its motion controller called PlayStation Move. The Move system includes three pieces counting the motion controller, the sub-controller, and the PlayStation Eye camera. The combination of the three devices allows the PS3 to detect the precise movement, angle, and absolute 3D position of the move controller when players are playing a game.

Sony says the Move controller has unmatched accuracy with a three-axis gyroscope, a three-axis accelerometer, and a terrestrial magnetic field sensor along with the color changing ball that the PlayStation Eye camera follows. The system lets the gamer provide input to the game with action buttons and an analog trigger and be rewarded with rumble feedback and different colors from the sphere attached to the Move controller.

The Move sub-controller device is designed for one hand use and has a curved design with an analog stick and directional buttons for controlling a game character. The Move controller and the associated sub-controller are more than a little reminiscent of the Wii Remote and Nunchuk. Power for the devices comes from a lithium-ion battery like the one used on other wireless controllers for the PS3. Sony reports that Move is to be supported by 36 game developers and more than 20 games will be launched this year dedicated to the Move platform or at least supporting it. The Move sub-controller can be replaced with a Dualshock or Sixaxis controller, but the camera and Move controller are required.

Sony has tagged the Move controller with product code CECH-ZCM1 and confirmed the fall 2010 release date. The retail price of the controller has not been set at this time and it will come in black only. Move controllers will weigh about 145g and measure 200mm x 46mm. The Move sub-controller is produce code CECH-ZCS1 and will debut this fall. No MSRP has been set for the sub-controller, which measures 138mm x 42mm. Among the third party companies supporting the Move system are Activision, Capcom, Disney Interactive, Konomi, Majesco, EA and many more.

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RE: Natal
By Aloonatic on 3/11/2010 10:52:36 AM , Rating: 2
Netal does look like it might be a good system, and at least they are going their own way and trying something new (if we ignore the PS eye toy that is I guess) rather than just blatantly copying the Wii as Sony seem to be doing.

However, the Wii-remote works well and people clearly like it, and also know how to use it. The advantage of it over the Netal type system is that you can walk about using it, sit down using it and put it down for a second to do something else, then pick it up again and keep on using it.

I haven't seen to much of Netal, but I assume that it will need some calibration and will need to know where you are while your playing, effectively glueing you to the spot and you can't really move all that much once you are going. If you start playing xBox Sports tennis stood up, you have got to stay stood up and can't sit down half way through for example.

I'm probably wrong and that's not how it will work out, but if that is the case, I'm not sure that I'd like to play using that sort of system.

RE: Natal
By Mitch101 on 3/11/2010 11:16:37 AM , Rating: 2
The eye toy is really just a cam and only detects changes from the surrounding environment. It doesn't really detect you from the environment only what it believes is not the environment. If anything changes in the background its detected like its you. If someone crosses the path they are detected like you would be. Its very picky about room lighting and can be picky if your wearing something that blends in with the background. Its still very fun but others cannot be in the camera view without interfering.

Natal is supposed to be able to detect the individual and can do so for up to 4 people. While it seems like just a cam its detecting the individual not the change from the environment. It remains to be seen if outside of you it can be tricked so easily like the eyetoy. Natal also detects depth and should work in low light conditions because it uses infra red. It also supposedly can detect different voices so it can determine who is giving the command. Surface it may seem like the eye toy but its working very differently.

Sony is copying the Wii controller and changing just enough to keep out of trouble. But its the simplicity and gameplay that makes or breaks it. Nintendo gets that. Not sure Sony does. It all comes down to the games here and the developers. Sony may make a better controller but if its overpriced and the games dont translate well then its moot. Since there is no Wii Replacement from Nintendo with beefed up graphics some developers might fall in favor or developing for the PS3.

I favor the eye toy for boxing style games on the eye toy over the wii personally. If Microsoft pulls off body motion well Natal can take the win over holding a controller.

Will have to wait and find out. Either way its going to be fun.

RE: Natal
By inperfectdarkness on 3/11/2010 1:32:40 PM , Rating: 2
i pray for moderate success with sony's iteration. it will go a long way towards forcing cut-rate developers to stop peddling shovelware "motion sensitive" games. wider adoption by consumers means that developer will actually have to give a crap when developing software--if they hope to compete.

nintendo has for far too long been chided for the glut of shovelware which is NOT the fault of its own software development studios. expect that greater adoption of "motion controller" setups will greatly improve the quality of games available to capitalize on it.

RE: Natal
By Aloonatic on 3/12/2010 2:48:11 AM , Rating: 2
I hope that Netal is as advanced as you say, and that it will work well. My Wife has an eyePet and it's OK, but current cameras seem to need a lot of light and still don't work particularly well, even in perfect conditions.

I'd love a controller free system. Even if it cost £100, that pretty much the cost of a couple of controllers. I will shamefully admit that even though I am in my early thirties, I still have moments where I am back to being a child and a controller or two has paid the price for my gaming failure. A system like Netal could save me a few pennies in teh long run. At least modern controllers are more substantial that SNES controllers used to be. I think beating Street Fighter with every character cost me a fair few controllers, or the ability to use the flimsy shoulder buttons on some at least.

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