Sony demo hand-held motion controller at E3
Sony has formally joined the battle of the motion controllers after unveiling their, as yet unnamed, hand-held motion controller at E3.
Made up of two handsets, the new PS3 controller works with the existing PS3’s eye.
The “technology demo” showed the way in which a player becomes part of the in-game experience, appearing on-screen, with the controller replaced by a variety of implements, from a baseball bat, to a weird sort of light-sabre whip thing.
Richard Marks, head of development for Sony’s new motion controller said “The controller can be measured to sub-millimetre accuracy.”
And in three dimensions, so not only does it know how far your controllers are from each other, it knows how far they are from the screen, which will allow for some potentially very immersive 3D gameplay.
Kaz Hirai, Sony Computer Entertainment President, said: “With PlayStation 2, when we launched the EyeToy camera, we had already perfected the art of playing games just using your hands.”
“The motion controller we demoed today, it raises the bar in terms of accuracy in 3D. It’s all about the accuracy and tracking.”
The new controller is being muted for a Spring ’10 launch, though by then Project Natal will be everywhere. Sony have been quite sorely beaten to the punch on this one, and by Microsoft, stuffy old Microsoft – that’s got to hurt.
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Guessing depth with a single camera is hard enough, doing it to ‘sub-millimetre accuracy’ is a miracle if they’ve managed it.
With large coloured spheres it’s not impossible to guess depth since the only factor that effects the size of the object is distance , anything oddly shaped and it’ll need to know the exact orientation with regards to the camera to get it correct. Even then I’d be impressed if they managed centimetre accuracy in 3D space with this technique, especially on a controller that doesn’t look quite as weird.
From the look of the demos they’re using the motion sensors to detect changes in depth rather then working it out completely.
Natal, having two cameras in a stereo pair, makes this a lot easier and a lot more accurate.