Sunday, June 14, 2009

Second that Wii-Motion

Yeah, I know I said I wouldn't talk about it, but I just have to talk about E3 a little bit. Well, perhaps not E3 perse, but something that was lacking at expo: my favorite game series ever, The Legend of Zelda.

Sure, Miyamoto-san and the crew at Nintendo talked about a new game for the DSi, but handheld Zelda games haven't been enough since the Ocarina of Time. And since we haven't seen our hero, Link, since his appearance in Twilight Princess, consumers have been wondering when he'll be back.

Nintendo had nothing to say about any console-based projects Princess Zelda anytime soon, but recently Miyamoto-san was quoted saying that there's a specific reason they haven't been upfront about development: the next Legend of Zelda might include...

Wii Motion+!

The Motion+ is the second in Nintendo's movement toward a full three-dimensional interactive gaming environment. The first began with the Wii Remote's (Wiimote) three-axes motion detection and infrared location detection. What the Motion+ does is add angular detection to the remote, giving it a 1-to-1 motion detection on all three axes.

With the Playstation 3, Sony also has a controller with a three-axes system, known cleverly as the "SIXAXIS". At E3, they announced a multi-location detection system, but no working game titles for the project:

Honestly, it looks more like a pair of dollar-store magic wands, but the detection was pretty smooth for the test demonstrations. It works along with the Playstation Eye in order to add location detection (including depth) to the control scheme. This might finally give the PS3 a competitive edge...but first they have to finish it.

Before Sony even presented, Microsoft announced Project Natal: A completely hands-free motion-detection system; it takes controls, location, depth and force into consideration, making it a new level in virtual-immersion.

The project was such a hit, that it was featured on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon last week. Natal is said to be functional with many current and upcoming titles on the XBox 360 - including a demo run with Burnout Paradise.

Of course the promotional video is blown out of proportion, but if it works like it's supposed to, then the XBox team might have a new titan on their hands:

In the mean-time, Nintendo already announced the launch of the first game that would require the Motion+: Red Steel 2 (by UbiSoft). The game is set to launch Fall of 2009, and features a tremendous amount of swordplay.

If it's any indication of the directions games are taking, then Miyamoto-san might have made a smart move by holding out on Zelda announcements (since our hero weilds a longsword, shield and a bow).

One thing is for sure, since the introduction of the WiiFit Balance Board and with the new directions controls are taking, in a couple of years it'll be hard to call gamers (casual or hardcore) lazy anymore.

Now give me my Zelda already!!!!!

Over and Out,

David Lucio

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