June 20, 2024

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PlayStation Move Review

Remember when the Wii came out. Sony smashed it saying it was a silly thing to swing a remote at a TV. But the white remote sold millions and now Sony has come with an answer and it’s called the PlayStation Move. A black torch shaped controller with a disco ball on top. It came out September 15th 2010 and I’ve checked it out.

Starter pack

Most customers will probably hit the shops just to find a whole shelve worth of Move controllers and accessories. And frankly I think most don’t even know what they need to buy to get the full experience. Well for those people, including me, Sony has released a starter pack with PS eye (needed for controller tracking), a move controller and a demo disc containing only content also available in the PS store.

I unpacked the box and installed the camera. Conveniently it doubles as a headset, nice! And the camera allows for fun things like video chat or making pictures for your game avatar.

The Move controller was equally easy to install. On the bottom there’s a USB port, for connecting and charging the controller, and the buttons have been perfectly placed near the glowing ball. New to PlayStation are two buttons, the move button and the trigger button. The move button is often used for selecting things or calibrating the controller, while the T button is perfect for shooters or letting go of objects in a game.

The starter pack is a great move by Sony to get people started. And it’s very competitively priced too at just €59,99. To put this into perspective, a Wii mote costs 40 (without camera and disc) and Microsoft Kinect will ship for a whopping €149,99! But I’d have liked to see an alternative starter pack with the navigational controller and charging dock included. They could’ve called it the “complete pack” or something.

Games

The demo disc includes Sony’s sport game with loads of mini games, and a couple of indie developed move titles and a few triple A demos of the likes of Heavy Rain and Tiger Woods 11. God my swing is bad!

Every game begins with a quick calibration session. It’s a simple progress often as easy as pointing the move towards the PS eye and pressing a button. I wonder though why the calibration is necessary every single time.

From the few games I could play I was very impressed with the precision and reaction of the controller. The sports title was a lot of fun. There’s a Frisbee game and it picked up perfectly whether I was throwing backhand or forhand, also it registered the speed of my throw and the timing of my release.

Same goes for the table tennis game. You can even do a 360 twist with the racket by swirling the controller in your hand. A nice party trick!

The PlayStation Eye camera introduces another element of interaction. This little device comes into play with the likes of Singstar and TV superstars. The latter I played a demo of. In the game you can make a profile using your own face. By making a “neutral face”, “smiling face” and “angry face” the game creates your own virtual mini me that react to whatever happens in the game. It really is a lot of fun and currently on #1 on my Christmas dinner entertainment list.

Downsides

So the controller is great, as is the camera and all for a competitive price. One might wonder is this product perfect? Well the answer tot that has to be no, it isn’t. First of all the starter pack alone is not nearly enough to keep you going. Most games require either two move controllers or a navigational controller to make it worthwhile. Add the costs of this, and a docking station, and you easily end up spending €150+ on a set of controllers and accessories.

And the PlayStation eye is desperately bad at recording at low light. Use anything other than natural light and the camera will go berserk on the ISO count resulting in noise all over the picture. Not great when video chatting with grandma or playing games that projects virtual toys into your living room.

Conclusion

The PlayStation move is an amazing controller. It’s very precise and really breaks down that wall between you and the games you’re playing. Fun for the whole family one might say. Combined with the functionality of the PlayStation eye one can’t go wrong with Sony’s latest creation. Just be prepared to spend a lot of money on accessories to get the whole experience.

PlayStation move review