Awesome: Xbox out-Wiis the Wii

posted at 7:09 pm on June 1, 2009 by Allahpundit

What’s sweeter than gameplay that encourages full-body activity with the controller? Gameplay that encourages full-body activity with no controller at all. I’m not sure how this will work — seems like the motion detectors are apt to be inaccurate, and good luck figuring out how “Milo” won’t get boring after five minutes — but any step towards the creation of virtual friends is worth celebrating. To beta males, at least.

Every time I get excited about new tech, dozens of people show up in the comments to tell me why it actually reeks, how it’s been done before, that only a fool would trust Microsoft/Apple/Sony etc etc. Go on, then. You know you want to.

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Cool, I want to see the crossworld puzzle game! I bet it BLOWS AWAY the pen and paper version!!!

PackerBronco on June 2, 2009 at 12:16 AM

Milo – made by a company that creates such awesome technology as Internet Explorer, Windows Vista, and the Xbox’s infamous red-ring of death.

New technology can be cool Allah, but it depends on who’s making it. Nintendo yes, Sony yes, Apple yes…

Microsoft, might as well read a book.

bombos on June 2, 2009 at 12:23 AM

This is really cool,now how do I,in the game,
detonate a nuclear weapon!
canopfor on June 1, 2009 at 7:15 PM

You tell a friend in the game to dig up some yellow rock, soak it in acid, melt it into metal, put a bunch of it together, and wrap it with explosive.

HotWeaver on June 1, 2009 at 11:43 PM

I just do a ONE-CLICK order at Amazon.NK.

Shy Guy on June 2, 2009 at 12:30 AM

I’m very excited. It could turn but gimmicky, but I’m doubting it. Next stop… Holodeck!

chicagojedi on June 2, 2009 at 12:43 AM

There’s no way in hell the technology will really work that smoothly. Even the Wiimotes, a proven technology, have serious limitations to them. For instance, if you’re swinging the Wiimote like a sword, it doesn’t really matter if you’re swinging it to the left or right. You could swing it in virtually direction, and it will register.

So, mo-cap without any visible gear to make it possible? I’ll believe it when I see it.

R. Waher on June 2, 2009 at 12:49 AM

Molyneux has a bad habit of overpromising and under-delivering. Just look at the Fable series.

lorien1973 on June 2, 2009 at 12:50 AM

For some reason my posts arent showing up. This is a test so please ignore. Sorry for the spam.

EconomicPirate on June 2, 2009 at 1:06 AM

longtime gamer here. ill tell you straight up – this has NOT been done before. This is something entirely new, which is surprising since this is Microsoft we’re talking about here.

You have permission to be impressed.

triple on June 1, 2009 at 7:15 PM

Actually it has, in December of 2007. Look up a company called 3DV. Its an Israeli company that Microsoft bought recently, and now we have Natal.

EconomicPirate on June 2, 2009 at 1:11 AM

There’s no way in hell the technology will really work that smoothly. Even the Wiimotes, a proven technology, have serious limitations to them. For instance, if you’re swinging the Wiimote like a sword, it doesn’t really matter if you’re swinging it to the left or right. You could swing it in virtually direction, and it will register.

So, mo-cap without any visible gear to make it possible? I’ll believe it when I see it.

Check out the onstage demoes and pay attention to the detailed outline of the people displayed by the camera on screen. You might also want to check out a video on Cnet called “3DV’s depth-sensing camera.” There are also a couple videos of it being demoed on the show floor at E3 and CES. Its real, and its kinda old tech. This has been around for at least a year and a half, and has been seen at CES and E3.

EconomicPirate on June 2, 2009 at 1:17 AM

EconomicPirate on June 2, 2009 at 1:17 AM

EDIT: it doesnt look like they were at E3 last year, but they were at CES 2008, and the video noted above is from December 2007.

This has been a long time coming. This is not new concept. This is developed product that Microsoft simply bought a few months ago and has now turned it into an Xbox parenteral.

And for all the skeptics out there, I suggest you pay attention to this quote from an Ars Technica article ”
Rumored Microsoft 3D Wii killer: we think we played with it”

In my years of covering games I’ve sat through literally hundreds of briefings and tech demos at trade shows, and what impressed me about 3DV was how real the technology was. Most companies are all show and no go at trade shows, but 3DV had a camera I could pick up and look at. They had a game I could play, as well as demos of the user interface functions. It was all there, and it was all working. “We’re going to be launching comfortably in the sub-$100 area,” Tomer Barel, VP of Marketing and Product Management for 3DV, told us.

EconomicPirate on June 2, 2009 at 1:25 AM

Windows seven rocks! It has speech recognition and handwriting recognition that works flawlessly. It has integrated touch capabilities. Windows seven will be a game changer.

In fact I did not type the preceding paragraph, I spoke it.

Geochelone on June 2, 2009 at 1:55 AM

Peter Molyneux… Ugh. He always promises so much and delivers so little. My guess is that said demo is 100% scripted from beginning to end; good luck asking that AI companion who won the Super Bowl six years ago. ;)

Wii = Win. The 360 and PS3 lineups don’t hold a candle to the greatness coming our way on the Wii in the third and fourth quarters of this year… and Nintendo hasn’t even announced their “super secret awesome big title” for this year yet as I assume they will later this morning. They’ve got something big to announce… just depends on what it is.

And after seeing footage of Grand Slam Tennis, Wii Sports Resort, and the first footage of Red Steel 2 in action, MotionPlus and all… nobody will be out Wii-ing the Wii this year. No one.

Jockolantern on June 2, 2009 at 3:50 AM

Milo – made by a company that creates such awesome technology as Internet Explorer, Windows Vista, and the Xbox’s infamous red-ring of death.

New technology can be cool Allah, but it depends on who’s making it. Nintendo yes, Sony yes, Apple yes…

Microsoft, might as well read a book.

bombos on June 2, 2009 at 12:23 AM

Microsoft took its lumps for the 360′s hardware issues, and deservedly so.

But it’s still a fantastic system. Best online functionality, streaming Netflix, and arguably the best library of the three consoles out now.

….I do love my Wii too, however. :-)

Hawkins1701 on June 2, 2009 at 5:08 AM

Let me know what awesome innovations Microsoft achieves after they manage to make an OS that can get a computer started in less than five-ten minutes, depending. Compare the super spiffy modern high tech PC to old tech TV. Turn on a TV and wah-lah, it turns on. Amazing. Turn on your PC and good thing you have that “Go for a cup of coffee’ option.

A virtual friend made by Microsoft? Who needs enemies.

curved space on June 2, 2009 at 9:37 AM

I’ll be impressed if this is an add-on to my current XBox 360. If I have to buy a new one then screw it.

mizflame98 on June 2, 2009 at 9:58 AM

I guess the only direction video games can go now is ghey. Could keep burglers and peeping Toms amused for hours watching a family re-enact vacant body motions in their livingrooms. And step 2 isn’t “?”, it’s the pr0n industry, baby.

Coronagold on June 2, 2009 at 10:12 AM

Re: Milo. Am I the only one who recognizes the same “oh wow so lifelike!” responses from AIs in the past? I mean, wasn’t Eliza supposed to be so life-like that it could fool others who didn’t know it was a simple “repeat what you just said, just rephrase as a question or ask about the speaker’s mother” algorithm?

The technology is cute. Personally, so much of that, I see is a waste of money. Call me Dr. Zaious, but none of that technology demoed–as it was featured–was new or interesting in the least. You can watch movies? (Oh, but without a remote. /yawn). You can jump out of your couch and pretend to replace a tire. /golfclap. Play trivia games without a controller. (Because wireless controllers are a pain…AMIRITE?) You can scan your own skateboard and pretend to skate….(instead of using same skateboard and going outside to….skate.) You can video-conference with your friends, because there is absolutely [i]no[/i] other technology out there that lets you do that.

Serious…what “new” was really previewed here? That no controller is needed? Nifty. Now find some actual *practical* use.

I can see the potential, but it really fell flat in those demos. And I’m always suspicious of someone who explains [i]exactly what we just saw[/i] in a demo. It’s usually a sign of “this is what you should have saw. Ask no questions. Don’t think any deeper than what I’m telling you. You saw a picture. It’s just a picture. See how interactive it is? It’s interactive. Believe me. Drink this”. The demo should speak for itself, and, as a previous commentator said, good luck in asking Milo who won last year’s Super Bowl.

For me, I doubt I’ll cancel my WoW membership just so I can put my fingers in a virtual pond with some kid who decided not to do his homework. Show me where I can burn down his house and raze his village, then let’s talk. If I want to socialize, I’ll just pick up a phone (or AIM or Skype or go to some forums or…etc), thankyouverymuch.

CatsGodot on June 2, 2009 at 11:54 AM

I’ll be impressed if this is an add-on to my current XBox 360. If I have to buy a new one then screw it.

mizflame98 on June 2, 2009 at 9:58 AM

It’s an add-on camera, so you don’t have to buy a new xbox 360.

I just wonder how many games they can come out for this sort of thing… the Wii games have kind of petered out already and it’s not even been that long since it came out.

Christina D on June 2, 2009 at 3:22 PM

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