Nearly four years ago the Nintendo Wii took the gaming industry by storm. It was released to the market with huge demand. Stores were unable to keep the system on the shelf, or really put it on the shelf because most were sold as soon as the store opened. The system was selling online for huge profits for the lucky few that were able to get the system and resell it. Many said that the underpowered Wii would just be a fad and over time would lose popularity.
Against what many thought would happen, the Wii continues to sell great and as of March, 2010 nearly 71 million units have been sold. The Wii attracted both gamers and non-gamers alike. Nintendo wanted the Wii to bring families and anyone that typically wouldnít pick up a controller and play a game to play the Wii and they were successful. The Wii quickly became popular for all ages and even found its way into nursing homes as a popular form of activity and therapy. Despite its popularity, the Wii continued to get some negative feedback with some saying it wasnít a system for ďreal gamers,Ē that it lacked quality games, etc.
Despite what has been said about the Wii over the past few years, it continues to sell quite well. Ignoring what has been said about the Nintendo Wii and motion controls in general over the years, Sony and Microsoft have decided they too want to join in on the success. The Sony Move and Microsoft Kinect were big parts of each companies E3 presentation this year and they will likely be the main focus for the companies for the rest of the year. But, the question is, did Microsoft and Sony join the party a little too late? With all the talk of motion controls lately, I thought it would be fun to discuss this topic.
Iím not embarrassed to admit that Iím a big fan of the Wii. I didnít buy it right away, but got it a little over a year after release. I wasnít completely sold on the concept when I first heard about it, but once I got the Wii and started playing Wii Sports, my opinion quickly changed and I became a fan right away. Over the years since I got the Wii, Iíve still continued to play it and still like the system, but the games that focus mainly on motion controls arenít what I play as much. When I first got the Wii, I was playing Wii Sports every day and didnít even touch the other games I had for a few weeks. Now, however, I rarely play Wii Sports and instead enjoy games like Super Mario Galaxy, New Super Mario Bros Wii. etc.
So for me, as the excitement of owning a new system started to go away I didnít stop playing the Wii, I just played fewer games with a lot of focus on motion controls. Wii Sports, Wii Sports Resort, etc. are all great games and are especially fun to play when other people are around, but I also like games that have a little more content. So, Iíve been thinking about Move and Kinect and while Iím normally pretty excited about new things like this and want to get them pretty quickly, Iím not even sure if I will get either one. They both seem interesting and Iím sure there will be some fun games with them, but I donít really know that I need any more motion control games nor do I want to spend the amount of money on these accessories when I already have the Wii. Iíve pretty much decided that if I ever buy Kinect and/or Move, I will wait until the price comes down a good amount. In the mean time, I have plenty of motion control games on the Wii to keep me occupied.
I do think that both Sony and Microsoft will be bringing some new features with their motion controls. Sony, I feel, will be the most similar to the Wii but from what I have heard is just more precise. On the other hand, I think Kinect is going to be quite different from the Wii since it doesnít use any form of controllers and I think it could be quite interesting. As far as games are concerned, I also feel there will be some decent games released and probably a few that I may want to pick up at some point. However, I feel a lot of the games are going to be very similar to what is already available on the Wii, which again, makes me question if it would really be worth purchasing either quickly after release. I have been reading some reviews from those that have been able to use these new motion control options and I must say, they do sound like they will be good products. If either appeals to me, I think Kinect may have a slight edge, just because it offers something really different from the Wii.
Iím very interested to learn more about Move and Kinect and get to use them myself to make my final decision on them. However, at this point I feel a lot of what they have to offer will be very similar to what the Wii already has to offer and what is different may not justify the purchase of everything required to make the systems capable of using motion controls. Even if Move and Kinect have a lot to offer and offer major improvements over the Wii, I still think motion controls are a thing of the past for most gamers. While they may still be fun for certain situations, replacing a controller for regular games with motion controls isnít something that most gamers seem to want. As for the non-gamers that have taken interest in the Wii, I think Nintendo has pretty much covered that market as well. At this point, Iím not sure if there is much of a market left for Sony and Microsoft and Iím afraid it may just be a little too late to try and cash in on the popularity of motion controls.
So what about you, do you think Move and Natal will sell well? Do you think Sony and Microsoft waited too long to release their answer to the Wii, or do you think they will be just fine? Do you plan to purchase Move and/or Natal? If you plan to buy one, will you be buying on releasing or waiting for a price drop? Feel free to join in on the discussion!
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