September 28, 2008:
Responding to Nintendo's market dominance, due to the hugely popular "Wii-mote" control scheme, Sony executives unveiled the Bodyshokk (tm) controller for the PS3.
"The user will put on this controller like a jumpsuit," explained Sony executive Ken Kutaragi. "They will then be able to control the actions of on-screen characters through physical gestures."
The Bodyshokk (tm) resembles a neon-pink wetsuit and can be customized with a variety of attractive racing stripes. During the demonstration, Kutaragi played a demo of God of War 3, in which the main character fought off a dozen assailants. He danced around the stage, then clutched his chest and screamed in pain when an enemy character struck his onscreen avatar with a large glowing weapon.
"Muscular feedback electrodes are built right into the controller," said Kutaragi. "In this case, a hit on the chest is translated into a tazer-level shock through the wearer's nipples. Force-feedback and motion tracking is the wave of the future. People want to feel their games, not just play them." Kutaragi then jerked spasmodically, as his game character was assaulted by multiple enemies, before his assistants could pause the game.
Executives at Microsoft are just as optimistic about their upcoming UltraPrecision series of console peripherals. Recently demoed was a life-sized robot, nicknamed "The RealFoe", which resembled a crash-test dummy. Programmers then punched and kicked the robot, and on the screen behind them the robot's cowering actions were displayed, as well as bruises forming on the in-game avatar, which resembled a middle-aged blond woman.
"You don't get that kind of force-feedback from just a controller's vibration," said one of the demo-givers, who wished to remain anonymous. He then turned towards the robot and delivered a backhanded slap. "Git your ass off the floor and make me some breakfast!"
On the screen, the virtual woman shakily got up, synchronized to the robot's actions, and stumbled towards a virtual kitchen. The game being demoed was The Sims 3 - Domestic Drama. The robot even slouched its shoulders in the same way the character was animated.
"You see that realism? Some people might complain that [these new controllers] take too much physical exertion, but once you actually play the game, the immersion is incredible!"