Down to the Last Save make that save roll!

17Jun/103

PlayStation Move: like a Wii HD

Posted by A Gaming Moose

Reading through a ton of the E3 news, it seems that I called it when I said that the PS3 Move is exactly like a Wii (but just with HD and 3D). Gizmodo's Mark Wilson had a hands on of the PlayStaion Move and while the peripheral has it's pros and cons, it boils down to the first gen software.

If you have been living under a rug, the premise with the PlayStation Move (over the Wii motion controls) is that the PS3 can track Z motion (depth) and gives the player better control. So you should be able to stab somebody instead of just swiping at them with a sword. The PS3 Move is going to suffer from the same issues as the Wii has: Waggleware. Games that both console manufacturers should be sweeping under the rug. Who wants to wave a controller as fast as they can to move faster (PlayStations TV super star and Wii Sports Resorts).

The other downside to the PlayStation Move is noticeable input lag.

So I tried The Fight: Lights Out. This is game seemed like the antithesis to TV Superstar. It's gritty and violent, sure, but it also tracks two Move controllers rather than one, allowing you to punch an opponent into oblivion. Plus, the Move's camera would track my eyes, allowing me to rotate my position by turning my head (a good thing, since I was warned not to move my feet after calibration). I couldn't wait, even donning 3D glasses for the full effect. The combat? Laggy. And I never felt like my punches were registered the way I threw them onscreen. Rather, my uppercut registered a precanned animation. I understand that my punches probably looked too horrible to use, but a lag, combined with pure animation cues, stops you from feeling like you're fighting. Heck, even Wii's loosely controlled Punch Out! feels more like actual boxing.

While not everything is bad about the PlayStation Move (read more about the Eye pet, Sports Champions and SOCOM) I just don't see the need for more motion control in video games. While Mark Wilson says SOCOM is enjoyable using the Playstaion Move controllers, I don't see it as being comfortable for extended periods. Playing some of the "point and shoot" games on the Wii was great fun, but it gets tiring quick. It will be interesting to see if Sony can bring developers to write for the platform and produce games that use the controls in unique/innovative ways. Time will tell if Sony can capitalize on the more feature heavy control scheme.

Then again, once you look at the true cost of PlayStation Move, it may be hard for game developers to write for it. PlayStation Move pricing breaks down like this: $39.99 for the main controller, $29.99 for the sub controller (although you could just use a dual shock controller) and about $40 for the PlayStation Eye. High costs + optional peripherals will mean for low adoption and game developers being reluctant to write games.

16Mar/100

PlayStation Move Shovelware: Slider

Posted by A Gaming Moose

No, it's not the awesome adaptation of Sliders, but the first PlaySation Move enabled game to come out from Sony's Japan Studios. Slider is also a good example of upcoming shovelware for the PS3 Move. Face it, the Wii is plagued by games with uninspired motion controls and now the Playstation 3 will get it's share of those games.

Joystiq has a hands on review of PS3 Slider and the game does seem to have charm; the game revolves around the concept of escaping from the Japanese mafia by using office furniture. While the concept is certainly zany enough to work, the downfall of PS3 Slider is the poor implementation of motion controls.

Waggling the controller moves the character forward, but to jump or duck you thrust the controller upward/downward. So moving forward, up and down use nearly identical motions; making for imprecise controls and frustrating game play. Just like Red Steel for the Wii (you had so much promise!). Joystiq failed to find the game enjoyable and correctly deduced that a casual gamer wouldn't be able to pick it up and play easily. This game probably could have used the SIXAXIS controller instead and been a much better game.

It's sad to see another avenue for poor (and gimmicky) motion controls used in another console. Good motion control makes a game more immersive in a way that normal controls cannot. Hopefully more First Party games for the PS3 get decent motion controls. Not to mention the amount of shovelware games that will be ported from the Wii to the PlayStation 3. Shovelware is never fun and makes for a poor purchase; worse, it's hard to tell how poorly a game has implemented motion controls until you purchase/rent the game. Thankfully there is always GameFly.