When Nintendo revealed the Wii in 2005, gamers weren’t sure about the utilization of motion controls. Pointing and waggling the equivalent of a TV remote at your screen to play Mario? It didn’t make sense. A year later, the console was released and people instantly ate it up. As of September 30th, 2012, the Wii has sold over 97.18 million units worldwide and both Sony and Microsoft have made their own devices utilizing motion controls.
Motion gaming is an unstoppable force because of the unique game design that allows for people of all ages to experience gaming. From pretending to bowl by waving the Wii-mote back and forth to aiming your weapon to eliminate enemies with the PlayStation Move, developers find themselves tasked with designing games that appeal to both the “hardcore” gamers and to those not as interested in gaming.
Motion gaming is more accessible and that brings the people in. There is money to be had in the motion gaming industry and tons of interesting experiments as well.
Now when big developers approach a new game, the idea of motion control cannot be ignored. When the possibility of 97.18 million sales is in the air, motion control has to be part of the discussion.
This was made obvious by Sony and Microsoft’s entries into the motion gaming market in 2010. Sony released the Wii with the promise of more precise motion control and Microsoft entered with a camera that tracked a player’s body movements and translated them on screen.
Sony has seen mild success with the device that, technically, is superior to the Wii but has lacked the support and appeal that Nintendo has received. Microsoft has been successful with the Kinect but the lack of precision, which is made possible by a controller in hand, has pushed gamers away.
When students begin studying game design, they must take into consideration the possibility of motion control as well. It has provided for many interesting experiments in various realms as well. Students at MIT and University of Washington created an unmanned helicopter that utilizes the Microsoft Kinect camera to navigate.
Motion gaming not only allows for non-gamers to experience gaming experiences but also may help innovate in a variety of other areas as well. Game design students may not agree with waggling a controller around, but it opens new realms of design and may even bring them millions of dollars in sales. Earn a game design degree and learn about motion gaming.
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