SBJ/April 11-17, 2011/In Depth

Motion video gaming creates opportunities

The continued rise of motion video gaming has fueled a trend of nontraditional sports titles using licensed intellectual property.

Nearly five years ago, Nintendo’s Wii first brought motion-based gaming to the masses, and the initial core title Wii Sports that was packaged with the console ranks among the top-selling video games of all time. But more recent advances in motion gaming, particularly the Microsoft Kinect peripheral for the Xbox 360 that allows users to play games without any controller, has opened significant new avenues for game developers.

505 GAMES
505 Games will soon release “Michael Phelps: Push the Limit.”
505 Games in June will release “Michael Phelps: Push the Limit,” a swimming title exclusively for Kinect featuring the most decorated swimmer in Olympic history. A wave of fitness-oriented titles using licensed IP, such as EA Sports’ “NFL Training Camp” and THQ Inc.’s forthcoming “UFC Personal Trainer,” similarly seek to leverage the motion technology. And a series of coming tennis games, including Sega’s “Virtua Tennis 4,” will also incorporate Kinect and Sony’s competing PlayStation Move functionality.

“We didn’t want this game to be like anything that’s been out before, and the Kinect has helped us do that,” said John Merchant, 505 Games global brand manager. “You can’t just stand in front of the [Kinect] and flail your arms. It involves actually learning the correct swimming strokes and using strategy. This is an amazing platform, one that opens up some great opportunities, and in the case of Michael, this definitely is not a one-off.”

“UFC Personal Trainer,” meanwhile, will seek to capitalize on a fitness craze involving martial arts and kick boxing, as well as extend THQ’s video game partnership with the mixed martial arts property.

“We thought right from the beginning there was a lot we could do with Kinect, particularly with giving users the ability to do a full-body workout without being encumbered by controllers,” said Arturo Castro, THQ Inc. brand manager. “What we’re looking to do is have an intense workout, an authentic fitness experience that really speaks to the core UFC male fan, but also is something directly accessible to women. The UFC brand helps give this credibility, sort of a seal of approval.”

Return to top

Related Topics:

In-Depth

Video Powered By - Castfire CMS Powered By - Sitecore

Report a Bug