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Xbox 360 Motion Sensing Tech Just Cameras?

By - Source: Tom's Guide US | B 19 comments

Is motion sensing the next big frontier in video games?

Last week Engadget received a tip (no idea how reliable) saying that Microsoft is “building a ‘sensor bar’ of sorts, but instead of detecting the waggles of Wiimote-like controllers, it detects full body movement and sound, sans controllers.”

According to the tip, the sensor includes a camera in it, capable of video conferencing (perhaps replacing the Xbox Live Vision camera?). The sensor is supposedly able to read full body and hand gestures, allowing the player to perform gestures such as punching, kicking. It’ll also be able to pick up small hand gestures for grabbing or scrolling.

If such motion sensing device for the Xbox 360 were in the works, it could just be the product of involvement between Microsoft and 3DV Systems. Reports from February put 3DV in Microsoft’s acquisition territory.

3DV’s product is a camera called the ZCam, which is able to measure depth in captured subjects. The sensed movements captured by the camera are then translated into input information, which could be applied directly into games.

Those who had tried the ZCam said that it was far more accurate at sensing motion than what the Nintendo Wii is capable of. Click here for that original story.

Hopefully we’ll hear about this product officially next month at E3.

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  • 0 Hide
    tenor77 , May 6, 2009 8:44 PM
    I'm on the fence about motion controls. Maybe because it's been done so poorly IMO. If this works maybe it'll be alright but maybe I'm just old school that I like my analog sticks.
  • 0 Hide
    bill gates is your daddy , May 6, 2009 8:48 PM
    So I'm running through a level of L4D and I sneeze or scratch some body part, my character will just fall down or stop to admire the horde that is in tow thus ending his life?

    I think I will stick with the old school controllers.
  • 4 Hide
    Tindytim , May 6, 2009 8:49 PM
    tenor77I'm just old school that I like my analog sticks.

    I'm with you there. The issue with motion controls is it just feels way to gimmicky. I can't imagine a bunch of people setting up huge Virtua Fighter tourneys if they had to make silly gestures to pull off complex combos. It really makes it more difficult to take gaming seriously.

    But I could see it being interesting for a few games, but using it as the sole control method is just retarded.
  • Display all 19 comments.
  • 2 Hide
    grieve , May 6, 2009 9:03 PM
    If the motion sensing is accurate I could enjoy it, however if it is anything like the Wii I will hate it!

    In my mind motion sensing = simulation and the Wii SUCKS!
  • 7 Hide
    bourgeoisdude , May 6, 2009 9:09 PM
    All I can say to Microsoft is...

    ...get ready for patent infringement lawsuits. Even if you aren't infringing on any patents.
  • 0 Hide
    deltatux , May 6, 2009 9:20 PM
    Now if they make the next Halo game with this tech and comes with a rifle for us to hold, now that would be kick-@$$.
  • 0 Hide
    rykerabel , May 6, 2009 9:29 PM
    its the ps2 eye toy or the ps3 eye all over again.
  • 0 Hide
    solymnar , May 6, 2009 10:19 PM
    Its pretty safe to say there are plenty of ways to do this wrong and to do it right. And some titles will be good candidates for a control mech overhaul and some won't.

    If its done right and only on the titles that will work well with it, then it will be a good thing. If its done poorly or they try to apply it to EVERYTHING...it will probably be more annoying than anything else.

    Still...there is some appeal to being able to remote control media center with your hand...

    Though I can picture pushing the cat away and accidentally changing the song etc...
  • 0 Hide
    haze4peace , May 6, 2009 10:19 PM
    meh, motion control didn't turn out to be as cool as it sounded. It only works well for a few select games, like wii sports and the like. The one thing i absolutely love though is being able to use the controller as a pointer.
  • 0 Hide
    SirCrono , May 6, 2009 11:04 PM
    Well, I think RE4 had a pretty cool controller scheme, analog stick to move, pointing at screen to aim and wiimote moving to execute (some) commands, it worked pretty damn well, Metroid Prime 3 did a good job with the controller too, so I'd say it can be done right.

    Nothing will ever replace the Keyboard+Mouse for me though.
  • -3 Hide
    eklipz330 , May 7, 2009 1:44 AM
    i wonder if it comes with a four controller ring to match the infamous RROD. Microsoft doesn't have a good history with releasing near perfect peripherals on their first try, so i think ima hang on to my money until.... the 4th wave of the motion sensing =][jasper is the 4th iteration right?]
  • 0 Hide
    soky602 , May 7, 2009 2:17 AM
    rykerabelits the ps2 eye toy or the ps3 eye all over again.

    I'm surprised they didn't mention that in this article.
  • -1 Hide
    coolkev99 , May 7, 2009 11:55 AM
    God I hate this motion control shit. The Wii sucks.
  • 0 Hide
    bill gates is your daddy , May 7, 2009 2:10 PM
    The only way I could ever find myself agreeing to something like this is if the character mimics your movements. Nothing beats an online persona grabbing their crotch in victory.
  • 0 Hide
    dman3k , May 7, 2009 2:19 PM
    We're just a leap away from the holodeck..

    Bring on the X360 pr0n! XNA Artificial Girl!
  • 3 Hide
    dman3k , May 7, 2009 2:23 PM
    rykerabelits the ps2 eye toy or the ps3 eye all over again.

    eyetoy doesn't recognize depth and small hand gestures. if you're going to bring up eyetoy, why not bring up all webcams, camera, polaroids, camera obscura, and pinhole camera? Or how about light and the eyeball?
  • 0 Hide
    Tindytim , May 7, 2009 2:27 PM
    bill gates is your daddyThe only way I could ever find myself agreeing to something like this is if the character mimics your movements. Nothing beats an online persona grabbing their crotch in victory.

    Yeah, the issue is that motion controls are simply replacing a button press in so many cases, so you end up with stupid gestures.
  • 0 Hide
    antilycus , May 7, 2009 3:30 PM
    Its too late in the current industry to release anything new, so all of these things should be looked at for teh possible next generation, which will probably come 2011, 2012
  • 0 Hide
    misnad , May 8, 2009 9:48 AM
    I guess motion sensing has a lot to grow and just needs a little more time. In any case, if MS is introducing motion sensing then it should be a feature that can be switched on/off since there are many people out there that still love the sensation of pressing on buttons and triggers.. just like me..
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