Nintendo Calls Sony a Copycat

Nintendo's U.K head honcho, David Yarnton, had this to say about Sony's sudden inclusion of motion-sensing technology in their controller.

"I'd love to dig up some old Phil Harrison (SCE President) comments and say 'hang on a second - six months ago when we launched our controller you said one thing, and now why are you doing this?'" said Yarnton. "I don't know what their decision making process is but I think if you look back, any innovation that has come in gameplay has come from us."

Read the article here.

And to both of these gentlemen, I'd like to point out the following controller, which was available several years ago for the PS2 and N64:

The Air Racer available for PS2 and N64

The most innovative game controller to hit the market in the last 20 years, Air Racer lets you react to and interact with action games like never before. Using advanced motion sensing technology, Air Racer responds to the natural movements of your hands without using a thumb pad to control the direction, speed and angle of your character or vehicle in Mid-Air.

Air Racer is suitable for all types of action games - flying, skiing, biking, racing, boating, fighting, tank combat, action adventure and more. Its innovative design brings you to the highest level of excitement and realism. Air Racer is... the future of game controllers.

Beyond the awesome playability of Air Racer is technology that enhances game play. Air Racer is the only controller to allow you to incrementally adjust the tilting and steering sensitivity during a game without re-calibrating the rotation - all with a touch of a button. Don't change the way you play... Change the way the game reacts... With Air Racer!

The thing is, I only stumbled across this particular item while looking online for a wheel-shaped motion-sensing controller that I played with at E3 oh, about 5 years ago. I believe it was made by either Logitech or MadCatz although I can't find anything on it anymore. I do recall seeing it on store shelves at Electronics Boutique and Gamestop back a few years ago. Can't find anything about it now though.

Either way, my point is that Nintendo and Sony can call each other names all they want, but this whole motion-sensing technology is about as obvious as obvious can be. And it's not new. That being said, after having played with both Sony's and Nintendo's controllers at E3, so far I must say that Sony's "Warhawk" game put the technology to use best. And by best, I mean in a way that didn't seem like a gimmick. And what I also like about Sony's use of the technology is that they're only utilizing it when it makes sense to. They're not force-feeding the control scheme down developers' throats. Sony's use of the technology, based on Warhawk at least, seems to actually add to the gameplaying experience.

Nintendo's games, on the other hand, were fun for a few moments, but I strongly believe that once you get over the whole "look at me, I'm swinging a tennis racket" you're going to realize that what you're actually doing is playing the shallowest tennis game since Pong. Similarly, once you realize that you've played Metroid Prime 3 for a few hours and have gotten over the excitement of reaching out and twisting door handles with the Wii-mote, you're going to realize that opening doors in videogames was a lot less tedious with a standard controller and button press.

No comments: