I hope you like the idea of moving your limbs to play games because it looks like the motion-controlling holdouts at Microsoft may finally be joining Nintendo and Sony’s party. According to VentureBeat, a source has confirmed recent reports that Microsoft has bought 3DV Systems, makers of motion detecting technology, for $35 million. They go on to add:
“Motion-detection will be big for the future direction of Microsoft, as it reacts to the Nintendo Wii, which revolutionized the game console industry with its motion detection technology. As I’ve mentioned, buying 3DV would be the opening gambit in a next-generation user interface battle. It has bearing on the future video game console war, but also likely involve the future of gesture controls for the PC and TV.
3DV has been working on its ZCams for some time. These cameras function much like Sony’s EyeToy, but they’re much more accurate at detecting motion. That’s because they’re 3-D depth cameras, which sense how far away an object is from the camera. In the camera’s black-and-white imaging, the closer objects are lighter and the more distant objects are darker. The camera captures the locations of objects many times per second, so it can detect an object and its trajectory, making it perfect for game control purposes.”
I really hope TotemBall gets a title update to incorporate whatever new tech comes around because that thing was just unplayable when it came out. From there we can expect plenty of minigame collections, music games, and “lifestyle” fitness titles before developers start working in juke moves to their shooters and physical macros for strategy or role playing games.