Wii Killer? Xbox's Project Natal - Chicagoland Sportbikes
Chicagoland Sportbikes
 
Video game forum For discussion about games and strategy's Please keep console specific content in the appropiate subforum.

 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 12:53 PM Thread Starter
Clever Girl
 
Noodles's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Glendale Heights
Posts: 10,209
Location: Glendale Heights
Sportbike: 'Fightered F3
Years Riding: 3 years
How you found us: I woke up here.
           
Send a message via AIM to Noodles
Wii Killer? Xbox's Project Natal

This looks like it's pretty cool. It's similar to the Wii in respect to motion sensing, but takes it to new level:



Quote:
Let's just admit it: the Nintendo people are total geniuses. I was one of the first journalists to see the Wii, in Kyoto in the spring of 2006. I even tried it out. I played fake mime-tennis. I caught a virtual fish by casting with the Wii controller. I did a little dance and watched a little guy do a little dance on the screen. At the time my thoughts were as follows: 1) Technologically speaking, this is a pretty amazing hack; 2) too bad the graphics suck; and 3) nobody will buy this ever. And 4) at least I got a free trip to Japan. And this was even before they told me the name.
Related

Now the Nintendo folks have sold about as many Wiis as Microsoft and Sony have sold Xbox 360s and PlayStation 3s put together. They are geniuses.

The Microsoft people may or may not be geniuses, but they're definitely geniuses at figuring out who the geniuses in the room are and then doing what they're doing. Today at E3, Microsoft announced a new technology that, like the Wii, uses motion-sensing to control video games. But it may just be better than the Wii. In fact it may just kill the Wii. (Read "Why Video Games Are an Excellent Economic Indicator.")

The Xbox 360 is a great machine. Hard-core gamers like it because it's got decent graphics and a great online service and it's developer-friendly, so there are lots of good games for it. But to compete seriously with the Wii, the Xbox has to expand outside the hard-core gaming scene too. It needs casual gamers, and that's where it has a problem. Non-hard-core gamers have trouble using the Xbox controller. It has two joysticks, two triggers, two bumper buttons and a bunch of other buttons besides. It takes time to learn. Their little thumbs get all confused. The Wii isn't like that: you just wave it like Harry Potter and you're golden.

If it had really tried to, Microsoft probably could have come up with a decent knockoff of the Wii controller. But instead they meaning Don Mattrick, the head of Microsoft's interactive-entertainment division and the former head of Electronic Arts decided that instead of imitating Nintendo, Microsoft would try to leapfrog past Nintendo. "We did explore whether we thought a motion-based controller was a true next step or a transition step," Mattrick says. "And for us, we decided it was a transition step." So about 18 months ago he started up Project Natal.

Microsoft tends to name its internal projects after cities. Natal is a city in Brazil, which is where Alex Kipman, one of the key engineers on Project Natal, comes from. What Mattrick and Kipman decided to try to do was to get rid of the controller altogether. They wanted a technology that would enable a gamer to control the game just by moving his or her arms and legs and other body parts. The gamer would become the controller.

This has actually been tried before, with peripherals like the Sony EyeToy. The problem with the Sony EyeToy and its ilk was that they were lame. They didn't track your motions very well, or precisely, and there were no good games for them. That's not surprising, because building a system of this kind is a very hard technological problem. But Microsoft's Xbox division has a somewhat different corporate culture than the rest of the company it's nimbler and friendlier to innovation and Kipman and his colleagues are extremely clever. Which is good, because they were going to have to innovate like hell to make this work.

What they came up with is a kind of self-contained module that you add onto your Xbox 360. It has a video camera in it that tracks where your body is and what you're doing with it. It also has a monochrome camera (it works with infrared) that reads depth how far away your body and its component parts are and a highly specialized microphone that can pick up voice commands. Along with all this hardware, it's got a ton of software that tells the Xbox how to find your body's various joints (it tracks 48 of them), how to keep track of multiple players at the same time, how to tell your Hawaiian shirt apart from the colorful wallpaper behind you, and so on. Microsoft even did an acoustic study of living rooms, so Project Natal can tell when you're talking, when your buddies are talking and when somebody in the game is talking, so it knows whom to take voice commands from.

The result is ... impressive. You start getting impressed when you walk in front of the thing and it immediately recognizes your face and logs you in. Very Star Trek. A few months ago Microsoft demoed Project Natal for Steven Spielberg, who in addition to directing movies designs video games, including Medal of Honor and the Wii title Boom Blox. He's one of the few movie people who really gets games as an insider, and Microsoft was looking for his blessing. He gave it. "The technology recognized me as a full person," he says. "It identified me, my legs, my arms, all of my movements, not just my wrists and my fists, and my thumbs, which is the current state of the art. This recognized my entire person and in a way accepted all of me as a competitor inside the gamespace." (See the 10 worst video-game movies of all time. )

Let the games begin. I had a chance to play a simple dodgeball-type game called Ricochet, in which you just punch and kick and head balls at a three-dimensional wall. It's weird to be playing a game with nothing in your hands if you've ever played a theremin, the sensation of playing with Project Natal is not dissimilar. It's spooky. But it's also very immersive. When a ball comes bounding at your head and you butt it back with your forehead, you can almost feel the smack of it against your skin. "It was the most tactile experience I've had so far in a gaming space," Spielberg says. "I got a sense that I was inside the space more than I have on any other platform."

Kipman also showed me a version of Burnout that had been set up to work with Project Natal. Burnout is a serious game, not just a tech demo it's a polished, fast-paced racing game with high-end graphics, and I happen to have played a lot of it. With Project Natal, instead of using a joystick, you steer by holding your hands up in the air like you're gripping a steering wheel. To hit the gas, you move your foot forward along the floor. To brake, you move it back. To trigger the turbo boost, you do a gear-shifting, fist-pumping movement with your right arm. Awesome.

It takes a few minutes to get the hang of it. You tend to oversteer, since you can't quite believe this thing is going to pick up your movements, so you exaggerate them. But soon you start to trust it, because it does actually work. I couldn't detect any significant latency. And there's definitely an extra edge to playing a game with nothing between you and the screen but your clenched, white-knuckled fists. I'm a hard-core gamer, so I'm not the person Project Natal is targeting. I love my controller as it is. But the appeal of Project Natal is real. You could compare it to the difference between regular movies and 3-D movies: it puts you in the action in a way that nothing else could.

Of course, the success of Project Natal ultimately depends on whether developers embrace it and write decent games for it. Today game developers all over the world have got their little Project Natal starter kits, and it's up to them to figure out what this stuff is good for. I saw a demo cooked up by Peter Molyneux (Black & White, Fable) in which you chat with a realistic-looking little boy. He recognizes your face and what color your clothes are, and he follows you with his eyes. If you walk over to a pond, you can ripple the water by moving your fingers across it. If you lean over it, you see your reflection. Freaky. "I think it's the next step after Wii," Spielberg says. "The Wii platform is totally engaging and awe-inspiring. But this is one step beyond that."
http://www.time.com/time/arts/articl...rss-topstories

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noodles View Post
Noodles accepts no liability for the content of this post, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided, unless that information is subsequently confirmed in writing. Any views or opinions presented in this post are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Noodles.
Noodles is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 01:04 PM
Go Hawks!
 
CHI1000RR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Plainfield
Posts: 3,541
Location: Plainfield
Sportbike: 1000RR (Sold) Looking
Years Riding: Long time but few miles
How you found us: I saw CLSB tatooed on some porn star's ass
           
looks bad ass!




"I am Jack's smirking revenge.."
CHI1000RR is offline  
post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 01:25 PM
Make my day!!!!!
 
wingit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Rockdale, il
Posts: 3,330
Location: Rockdale, il
Sportbike: Looking at a shiny Huffy!
Years Riding: 20+ yrs.
How you found us: member
           
Almost unbelievable or maybe just unaffordable! Still $400 for an elite can you imagine one with all these sensors cost?

Living life! Because before you know it it is over!

Joe

FACEBOOK
wingit is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 01:36 PM
Registered User
 
Kruz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: West of 59, North of 88
Posts: 18,885
Location: West of 59, North of 88
Sportbike: 05 CRF50
Years Riding: "Since 1992"
How you found us: You found me
           
The adult applications for this are limitless.

They also need a bigger TV for that space.
Kruz is offline  
post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 01:59 PM
Administrator
 
HDTony's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Plainfield IL
Posts: 45,956
Location: Plainfield IL
Sportbike: A couple of pasta rockets
Years Riding: Since 1989
How you found us: In the beginning there was CLSB and Tony saw that it was good.
           
Send a message via AIM to HDTony
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kruz View Post
The adult applications for this are limitless.
My goodness!! Ken's gonna be humpin everything that moves!!




HDTony.... Damn glad to meet you!

Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.

- Ronald Reagan

AirTek Heating & Air inc.
HDTony is offline  
post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
Clever Girl
 
Noodles's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Glendale Heights
Posts: 10,209
Location: Glendale Heights
Sportbike: 'Fightered F3
Years Riding: 3 years
How you found us: I woke up here.
           
Send a message via AIM to Noodles
Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTony View Post
My goodness!! Ken's gonna be humpin everything that moves!!
I can see the happy dances now after a victory

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noodles View Post
Noodles accepts no liability for the content of this post, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided, unless that information is subsequently confirmed in writing. Any views or opinions presented in this post are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Noodles.
Noodles is offline  
post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 02:29 PM
Administrator
 
HDTony's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Plainfield IL
Posts: 45,956
Location: Plainfield IL
Sportbike: A couple of pasta rockets
Years Riding: Since 1989
How you found us: In the beginning there was CLSB and Tony saw that it was good.
           
Send a message via AIM to HDTony
Quote:
Originally Posted by Noodles View Post
I can see the happy dances now after a victory
And you thought he was t-baggin guys now?? just wait




HDTony.... Damn glad to meet you!

Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.

- Ronald Reagan

AirTek Heating & Air inc.
HDTony is offline  
post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 02:48 PM
A.K.A. Vodka Waters
 
muddy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Aurora, IL
Posts: 3,788
Location: Aurora, IL
Sportbike: '06 GSX-R600 Red/Black
Years Riding: a few weeks
How you found us: Fell asleep on the keyboard, woke up here
           
Send a message via AIM to muddy Send a message via MSN to muddy
Ok that's pretty damn cool. I wonder how much that setup will run...

Adam
muddy is offline  
post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 03:11 PM
Si Vis Pacem Parabellum
 
SmartDrug's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Bartlett
Posts: 11,410
Location: Bartlett
Sportbike: 955i Speed Triple, 100AE Road King, AP1 Honda S2000
Years Riding: 1/3rd of my life.
How you found us: Cave Johnson
           
No way that will work as well as what they showed in that video.

You know how this works out in real life, that game show buzzer thing will miss every 3rd buzz in and 50% of the time it will ring in for the wrong player. The sensors will not be anywhere near accurate enough to play a real game. Maybe cool for a UI but not for gaming. Look at the Wii, sure it's fun but Mario Kart without a GameCube controller is nearly impossible.

Brian
NESBA #22
الكافرة مع بندقية سوداء
Si vis pacem parabellum

Quote:
Yeah, I quit doing blow, not being rad!
SmartDrug is offline  
post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 03:21 PM
Registered User
 
impostor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Streeterville
Posts: 319
Location: Streeterville
Sportbike: '07 CBR600RR
Years Riding: 13
How you found us: Anna
           
Looks like a cool idea, but holding on to an invis steering wheel looks really lame.

+1 for adult applications.
impostor is offline  
post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-02-2009, 03:28 PM
Sgt USMC
 
echo5romeo's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Vernon Hills, IL
Posts: 441
Location: Vernon Hills, IL
Sportbike: 2006 GSX-R 750
Years Riding: Apr 2007
How you found us: Google
           
yea, that thing looks nasty, i saw the demo on E3...
i was in awe @ the Aquarium 'game' on PSN that uses the PSEye,
but Natal puts it to shame... gonna have a new type of gamer after this release
however, i don't see myself buying/using it on the shooter games i typically get

"I and the Public know, what all schoolchildren learn
Those to whom evil is done, do evil in return"
W. H. Auden
echo5romeo is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Chicagoland Sportbikes forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome