The future of gaming arrives in 2010

When the Wii first came out, Nintendo took gaming into a whole new place; if you didn’t like learning to use fiddly little controllers (and remembering to press >>XO>< or something) to control games, then there was a brilliant intuitive alternative in the Wii remote.

Even the Redknapps could use it:


(I’d like to believe there’s a whole generation of technologists and designers who know sit for hours refining their inventions so that they pass ‘the Redknapp test’…)

Anyway, it was only a matter of time before Sony & Microsoft got in on the act, and in the last two days we’ve seen big announcements from both.

First up, Sony are giving us the PlayStation Motion Controller (via ENGADGET).  It consists of two parts; a little wand like device featuring some buttons and a glowing globe at the top, and a camera that you perch atop your TV to watch you waving it around.


Watch this video of the presentation to see it in action, and to learn a lot more about it:

It looks pretty darn cool, taking a lot of the technology we’ve seen in the infancy of augmented reality and moving it up another good few levels.

Yet it remains a controller, and it still has buttons on it… because, say Sony, buttons are still something we’ll need when playing games.

Buttons are something that Microsoft are proposing we don’t need in the future.

Have a look at this: it’s called Project Natal

If this works like it looks like it works, it’s going to be an absolute revolution in not only how we play games, but for everything where we want to interact with a screen.

Yeah, I know, that looks like another Microsoft high production piece with actors… so here’s a live demo from the announcement:

What’s more, it’s something that will work with every XBox 360 that’s out in the world already.

Both devices will be available in 2010 it seems… which isn’t a long time away at all. 

You’ve got to think that the XBox system is the game changer here; it revolutionises gaming, and the base system is already installed in more homes – this report from the Guardian suggests worldwide sales of 30 million for the XBox 360, versus 22 million for PS3.  Both are trailing the 50 million selling Wii).

But if there’s one thing that’s for certain it’s this; given the amount of jumping, running, kicking and punching we’ll be doing in the future, we’re all going to need bigger living rooms and unbreakable vases… ]]>