When it's the newest Virtua Tennis game on the Playstation 3. Gaming blog, UK Resistance, has a post about how SIXAXIS will supposedly work on the PS3 controller. If there were any doubt in my mind that SIXAXIS gimmick before, it'd been replaced by firm belief. I'm sure the SIXAXIS motion control could be used in interesting ways, but based on the fundamental design of the controller, I don't really see it being a replacement for a lot of the control mechanisms we use today. I can't even imagine what watching someone play this game must look like, let alone doing it myself. I need to believe that you're able to drop this game back to using the thumbsticks.
Pong was simple. You went up or down to hit the ball. Now, here we are over two decades later and we're finding ways to make things needlessly complicated. I think that part of the reason that the Wiimote works as a motion control device is the shape. As a rectangle, it has a defined shape and is easy to use and manipulate conceptually. Many objects have the rough simple shape of a rectangle, like a fishing pole, baseball bat, or a golf club. The PS3 controller is ... awkward. Awkward to hold in any orientation other than the original indented horizontal form and is an awkward shape for visually comparing it to other objects around us. Also, its not like there isn't a bit of history here with these type of things failing. If the motion sensing isn't anything shy of perfection in your home environment, you'll end up with another Nintendo PowerGlove or Sega Activator on your hands.
So is SIXAXIS going to be relegated to poor implementation and gimmicky usage or does it just need to find its place? Does anyone else have any theories about how implementation could work for games with SIXAXIS or why its harder than the Wiimote? Is everyone going to be motion controlled out in three months?