Gates unmoved by motion-sensing controllers

Microsoft cofounder downplays the importance of Sony and Nintendo's experiments in next-gen interfaces.

When the next-gen systems from Sony and Nintendo hit the market later this year, they'll come equipped with motion-sensing controllers designed to immerse players further into their games. No such functionality was included in the controller for Microsoft's Xbox 360 system when it launched last November, but that doesn't appear to bother the software giant's cofounder and chairman, Bill Gates.

In an interview with MTV News, Gates said there was room for innovation in gaming interfaces but said "it's something that's not mainstream for most games." The billionaire figurehead of Microsoft noted that several years ago his company tried to market a controller that sensed 3D movement (the Sidewinder Freestyle Pro), but it didn't take.

"It's tough because sometimes you move the controller, and you don't [mean] to fly into the ground. You just want to put the controller down," Gates told MTV News. "People aren't that good at totally standing still. Even pilots actually sit in a chair when they do their flying. So there's a lot to be learned about these controllers."

Gates also discussed his belief that connected, social gaming would be more common than single-player gaming in the future and that the industry needs new ideas to go along with familiar genres like first-person shooters and sports games.

Gates also mentioned Microsoft's possible entry into the portable gaming market. He said he thought that eventually there would be an all-in-one media/phone/gaming device that could be carried around in one's pocket but that the hardware needs to be better and "the world isn't ready yet for a device that meets all those needs."

Written By

Discussion

634 comments
Unassigned
Unassigned

Gates hit the nail on the head. We already had inputs, ie buttons, sticks and such. Why REMOVE a feature (vibration) just to change the input method? Doen't make any sense to most of the consumers who bought PS3's. The sixaxis is way to senstitive for motion control and the lack of vibration takes you out of the game.

vader501st
vader501st

Nintendo tries to be the best, but they are past now, it's timefor them to stopinventing thing and more things to try to be popular, leave the consoles toSony and Microsoft.THEY ARE THE FUTURE.

WeeWeeJumbo
WeeWeeJumbo

Wow, big surprise, Bill Gates downplaying his competitors' products. He's totally unpredictable, that one. Wait, the problem isn't Gates, Harrison, or Fils-Aime; the problem is in the legions of retards who hang on every last piece of marketing BS. Hey, when you're hanging on to BS, what have you got in your hands? What have you got on your mind?

hotice47
hotice47

i need all in one ........

Jawolton
Jawolton

hmmmm. a media device and a handheld gaming console. i think there called a psp aren't they?

rev_blade_sword
rev_blade_sword

Does anyone here actually know any casual gamers? I can tell you right now that there is no way they will fork over $600 for a game system. I have been a gamer all my life and even I am a little shaky about it's price tag...and I work two jobs. Plus the whole motion sensing thing really won't bring in the new gamers or casual gamers as they would think it "stupid" or "retarted" to move around while playing GTA. The whole reason Sony is doing so great is because they have a cheap console and licneses. If Sony lost it's licenses then all it would have is it's name which doesn't carry as much as it used too.

swedish-marine
swedish-marine

Nintendo is taking the industry forward, Microsoft doesn't, and we are not even going to mention Sony... Microsoft has a pretty cool system for more social playing over the Internet, pretty much maxed up as it can get with best possible controllers (note: regular controllers, Wii's not classed as regular controllers) and if they were to add something into the system now it would butcher everything and just make them look stupid. Nintendo Wii has the best ways to control, the most innovative and creative ideas every generation (nothing of it was shown on the GameCube though) and it is clear that they know what they are doing to make everything the best for those who are a little bit more open minded, their "controllers" or remote-controlls is not made for everybody, but for those who are into games for real and not playing the latest games to be cool or something (it sounds really lame but I know many who're like that) And the PSP was horrible as it was, it was just a GameBoy with improved graphics with general poor technology thinking of how quickly the batteries will drain and so on and forth, so if Microsoft were to launch any portable device they'd better wait and make something with Xbox graphics (Sounds idiotic I know) and with good controls (I have no idea how they were going to figure that out) and wait until the battery-level can be acceptable to the fact you're actually going to play on the unit. And I don't think they should add all that crap like Sony did, and now they want to do something like a cell-phone-all-around-gaming platform? No, stick to the platform or just launch another PPC.

GhostStalkerX1
GhostStalkerX1

True we have halo but its only halo 3. Its the final one, sux but i gess we will se if bungie will just make multiplay halo games later.

HarrisKrishna
HarrisKrishna

The $tupid thing is PS3 is using this motion sensing thing. They r stealers :evil:

JoshGuyAtPlace
JoshGuyAtPlace

i think he's right, i was at e3 and all the wii games except wii sports and (oddly, music orchestra) were difficult to control. I think the actual layout of buttons is more important than anything else, and no one can argue that sony's controller basically is the best. Possibly the worst controller of all time is the gamecube one( yes, worse than the original xbox jumbo one) because of the layout and unbeleivable bad analog contol and the c-stick sucked. I don't think it will be too much of a problem for Sony because they're not focusing on it, it's just a cool addition.

CommanderLYNX
CommanderLYNX

I don't like the idea of having to monitor the way I am physically just so it won't affect my in-game performance. Because the idea was original for Nintendo, they will overcome that fear; however, because Sony stole the idea, it will remain gimmicky and provoke the fear I initially mentioned. Also, of course Mr Gates is going to defend his position, do you expect him to cry, bend over, put his hands up and say "Yes I'm defeated." Of course not.

Weedwacker44
Weedwacker44

I still don't like moving controllers to do stuff on the screen. Sit down, and play video games normally instead of walking halfway across the room just to move your character a few pixels on a screen.

SteelLegend
SteelLegend

Gaming is about the games.... not the stupid controllers.

PeachyRamune
PeachyRamune

Gates didn't even try the Wii or PS3 controller, so what is he talking about? The PC market is very different from the console one. It is not a matter of technology, but of library and accesibility. Everyone who owns a Wii will have the remote from day one and also the games for Wii. For the PS3 the motion sensing can be used as part of the game. No game has to revolve around it. It's just an extra little bit without have to sacrifice the good Dual Shock layout. I don't see how anyone can assume, PS3=Fail cause of motion sensing. Gates and his fans must be ass-talking again. God, I hate fanboys. Gates should have admitted, that the 360 controller could have included motion sensing too. That's okay Gates, you're not the first spokesman/CEO to eat their words. This is how it should have went down. "We will win because we have Halo and LIVE, doo-doo head."

likes_harleys
likes_harleys

How many games are actually better controlled with motion sensitivity? I can't think of any of my favorites on any platform that would actually control easier or more precise. They have to make games specifically for a motion sensitive controller, and I can't see those games having much variety. Kinda like all the Nintendo DS games that tack on some useless touch screen support, with only a handfull that make it useful or fun.

da1ai
da1ai

Some people "need" or want the motion sensing controllers. For me i am good with the comfortable and perfectly hand fitting controller of the X360. Wii is great because they are putting all effort for motion sensing. But meh what is Sony doing? they make a hybrid ? jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none. And i really really think they should re-make the controller again move the anolog sticks in better positions so your thumbs dont have to be in so uncomfortable position (you only feel it if you play alot tough).

kojinto
kojinto

The 360 doesnt need any type of motion sensing because, 1 they would be copying Nintendo, 2 it would take a while to get used to the new controls, 3 they already have the most comfortable controller out there why need a motion sensing one. i am going to laugh once i see how the PS3 has integrated their motion sensing ideas into a game HA!

a770106
a770106

Honestly, I believe that the 360 controller is the best one on the market today. So why mess with success?

KompleX82
KompleX82

Why is everyone hating on Microsoft? just because Microsoft didnt rush out and copy nintendos idea like some people, doesnt mean the controller is dated and worthless. And bill is right, the world isnt ready for motion sensing controllers yet. Have you seen the press conference when sony unveiled there "New" Motion sensing controller? The guy look like he was drunk. Thats not fun at all. And all the people saying that Bills mad because he didnt think of it, they put one out on the PC way before Sony stole the idea.

pyth0n13
pyth0n13

it's nice that the ps3 controller has motion sensing. but it's up to the developer to make use of it. most developers create games for multiple platforms and the majority of those games are gonna be direct ports of xbox 360 with ps3 games. since the xbox 360 doesn't have motion sensing, there's no reason or incentive for a developer to change the controls of a game specially for the ps3. that's why the gamecube ad such a hard time with third party develpers, the controller was just a bit too different. if sony wants good games for the ps3 that makes very good use of the motions sensing, they'll have to make those games themselves.

GhostStalkerX1
GhostStalkerX1

360 is not grabage, wii will have nohing on it, dont get me rong i like nintendo and i would never pass up smash bros even now that snake will be on it. (SWEET) nintendo will never match ps3 or 360 and they know that they are just trying to come up with a way to amuse ppl in a game, but holding the control in a certan position will get tireing after long. I think ill just keep my normal controls...i pown with them just good enof.

firstrehani
firstrehani

abosoutely bill is right......soon sony will launch a booth in which you can stand and do all the actions to make moves and play all the game.

bugzyatmerchi
bugzyatmerchi

Um, you see when he said that people might crash their plane when all they want to do is put their controller down? Well, when people put their controller down, doesn't that usually mean they've finished the game? Just a thought...

Ghost_Warrior
Ghost_Warrior

The 360 controller is fine with me, im not even sure why the motion sensing controller is better anyways.

CrazyAss415
CrazyAss415

...I don't think the motion sensing is such a big deal. I, for one, hate the idea of having to hold a controller in a fixed position. Does anyone remember light guns? How long did it take before your arms would get tired and you would start holding the gun with the other hand or try to come up with a support structure (like a knee or chair arm. It's a gadget, not a system seller!! HA

jschmiel
jschmiel

a lot of u dont know wat ur talkin about. ive got a 360 and it rocks! and im gona buy the Wii too, who could pass up super smash and the new mario? as for the PS3 its going to cost too much and i dont think that it was a good idea for sony to attempt the motion senceing controller. EVERYONE SHOULD JUST BUY A Wii AND A 360!!! :)

worshyr
worshyr

360 is garbage. WII is where it will be at

crazyhulk
crazyhulk

the nintendo wii controller has so much variety for gaming and in a way is universal for everyone to use. while playing with the ps3 controller, its very limited and at most, itll feel wierd becuz of how your holding it. Nintendo and Microsoft should team up. As far as I know i havent heard any bashing betweeen them, only both of them bashing at sony....

lee291
lee291

it would be ace to see the Xbox360 go down the drain die Microsoft scum

GhostStalkerX1
GhostStalkerX1

Well for one, hitting the brakes and turning yur rist. Anyone with a normal controller will beat you. I dont mind the whole motion sensing control crap hey u like it good for you, even if wii has the botton to enable the control to do the motion thing, your hand will get tired of holding that down, or just be plain unconforterbal. And to all xbox live users WTF are you complaining about. $50 a year is good for online play its nothing compared to what ps2 online play is, and you can only have a BB con so that laggy dail up isnt there not to minchion what you can do with it. Doesnt bother me here.

d1ckenson
d1ckenson

I hate the idea of a motion sensing controller, i mean everyone ive played with moves their controller like a madman, i personally cant keep the thing still for more then 10 seconds, especially if i'm playing something frantic! imagine trying to play halo with a motion sensor, you couldn't shoot straight to save your life

keelog_05
keelog_05

Zane182 Melo_15 - "And for all you sony fan boys they thought of nothing they just stole ideas. " Wrong. Blu-ray is their idea. Ok the standalone players are overpriced and probably not worth it, but for PS3 you cannot argue with what it brings. PS3's price point may seem offputting but it'll drop when PS3 has a user-base. Blu-ray is a high capacity storage disk with enough capacity to have multi-language support for games like MGS, Final Fantasy, Devil May Cry, Silent Hill, Assassins Creed etc all on the 1 disk. That means one disk for all terretories. Simultaneous launch for Final Fantasies? Even if you are not an FF fan you can see the advantage. Plus the high-capacity means developers can add oceans of exclusive content. Sony are making mistakes, Price, Controller, but Blu-ray is definitely not a mistake, and it's entirely their own idea. I plan to buy all 3 machines I'm no fanboy. I do believe Sony have a fight on their hands but I don't think they're going to lose. For those who can only afford 1 machine? Go for where your fave games are. Choosing by hardware isn't gonna work. My whole thing with the BluRay is that Sony's talking like there are games now that are losing content because of the capacity of a DVD, but the fact is that there has yet to be a game that came close to even nearing the 8.5 gb capacity of a DVD. I don't mean to sound like a dick, but I live in America, so I don't care if my disc can be played in any country, as long as it plays in America, I'm happy. I think that Sony is forcing its new disc format down gamers throats before there's enough support to do so. I don't care how good the picture is on a BluRay disc, it's not good enough to merit $1000 for a player or $600 for a game system/player; not to mention that no one knows how much games are going to cost. It also could be argued that the BluRay disc wasn't Sony's idea, since Toshiba does have a HD-DVD, but since I don't know which was created first, I can't say that Sony stole that idea.

Zane182
Zane182

Melo_15 - "And for all you sony fan boys they thought of nothing they just stole ideas. " Wrong. Blu-ray is their idea. Ok the standalone players are overpriced and probably not worth it, but for PS3 you cannot argue with what it brings. PS3's price point may seem offputting but it'll drop when PS3 has a user-base. Blu-ray is a high capacity storage disk with enough capacity to have multi-language support for games like MGS, Final Fantasy, Devil May Cry, Silent Hill, Assassins Creed etc all on the 1 disk. That means one disk for all terretories. Simultaneous launch for Final Fantasies? Even if you are not an FF fan you can see the advantage. Plus the high-capacity means developers can add oceans of exclusive content. Sony are making mistakes, Price, Controller, but Blu-ray is definitely not a mistake, and it's entirely their own idea. I plan to buy all 3 machines I'm no fanboy. I do believe Sony have a fight on their hands but I don't think they're going to lose. For those who can only afford 1 machine? Go for where your fave games are. Choosing by hardware isn't gonna work.

drmrzt
drmrzt

HA! Guess he has nothing else to say about it since he didnt think of it first for the 360...

dryden555
dryden555

these motion controllers are a bit of a gimmick. Doesn't mean they wont be fun with a few games but the novelty WILL wear off.

Anchor_Man
Anchor_Man

I honestly agree with Bill here.

MeltedGeneral
MeltedGeneral

Um....the Wii has a home button too and there were other motion senstive controllers before the Wiimote

Nando1984
Nando1984

"the world isn't ready yet for a device that meets all those needs." more like technology isn't ready to make sucha device at a reasonable price.

Melo_15
Melo_15

I have a 360 and i love the controller the vibration definately should be there becuase how will motion sensing get u in the game if u get shot or something. It wont but a normal controler can vibrate and generate a feeling. And for all you sony fan boys they thought of nothing they just stole ideas. Believe it or not they used to make sound cards for nintendo and now they just steal the 360 guide button and the wii motion sensing

UMCP
UMCP

Bill gates is more like a politican...

Zane182
Zane182

Square Enix, Konami ... the 2 most influential Japanese developers, both of which really only support Sony and Nintendo strongly, FFXI wasnt so successful on the 360. This is why Microsoft wont succeed in Japan. If Square were to remake FFVII for Ps3 along with FFXIII, and hopefully Star Ocean 4/Dragon Quest IX, the Japanese will be easily swayed.

bizsumpark182
bizsumpark182

I hate gates! God he thinks he knows what everyone wants. Well you know what gates your full of crap. All he cares about is the mainstream not what gamers really want. Reminds of me of high schoolers going for senior class president or something.

Zane182
Zane182

It won't be that hard. I will imagine both companies, Sony maybe more so due to their method of motion-sensing. Will allow motion sensing to be turned off, either via the console, the controller, or pause menu in the games as Vibration could be. I'm sure both Sony and Nintendo have common sense. I don't think there will be too much concern.

protik
protik

IF U CAN'T HAVE THAT WHY BLAME OTHERS. NEXTGEN NOT ONLY MEANS GRAF IT ALSO MEAN PLAYING GAMES IN DIFFRENT WAY.

metdevthegamer
metdevthegamer

Now that I think of it, pausing the game and then adjusting the angle of the controller would be a problem. I've seen arcade games that use a similar technology to motion sensing fix that problem; when paused, the controller is still active, but only moves the angle of the character or object being controlled, and suspending it (no forward, backward, upward, or downward acceleration; only rotation). Maybe Nintendo will implement a device that will make sure when unpausing the game that players match the position the controller was in before pausing. Nintendo has used alignment resetting tools in their previous console, so I'm betting they will use a similar thing with the Wii. Sony, not so sure what they'd do.