Kinect vs. Move vs. Wii

Motion-control schemes will soon be available for the Sony PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, as well as the Nintendo Wii. But out of the PlayStation Move, Kinect and the Nintendo Wii, which will be the best?

This year, Sony and Microsoft are set to release two new control schemes for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 — the PlayStation Move and Kinect for Xbox 360, respectively.

Unlike traditional gamepads, Move and Kinect employ motion-based sensors to control the action on screen. However, they both go about it in very different ways.

In addition to competing against each other, Move and Kinect must face Nintendo's phenomenally successful Wii console, which also uses motion controls. (Last year, Nintendo released a precision-enhancing attachment dubbed the Wii MotionPlus.) In other words, there will soon be three motion-based controllers to choose from.

In the following article, we take a look at each motion-control interface in turn and run through their specific strengths and weaknesses.

Nintendo Wii

Kinect vs. Move vs. Wii
Wii logo

The Nintendo Wii was the console that started the motion-control revolution. (Fittingly, it was actually codenamed 'Revolution', before Nintendo made a last-minute name swap.) With a four year head-start on the competition, the Wii is the safest bet for cautious shoppers. However, it is also the least technically impressive of the three control schemes.

How it works

The Nintendo Wii dictates in-game motion via a sensor bar that communicates wirelessly with up to four Wii Remotes. Players swing the remote around to replicate movements onscreen in games such as Wii Sports.

Wii controllers are designed to be perfectly usable whether you're left or right-handed. For games, the Wii Remote has a plus pad (D-pad), a large 'A' button, an underside 'B' trigger, and buttons labelled '1' and '2'.

Kinect vs. Move vs. Wii
Wii Remote & Nunchuk controller

The front of the remote has other buttons as well: namely, power up, minus and plus (for escaping game menus, and the like) and a home button (for switching back to the Wii Menu and checking controller battery life).

The Wii Remote also contains a control for adjusting force feedback, a built-in speaker, a wrist strap (in case the remote flies out of your hand), and four blue LED lights that indicate which player/controller number you've been assigned.

An expansion port on the remote lets you connect the Nunchuk and other optional controllers. The supplied Nunchuk controller is used in conjunction with the Wii Remote and provides an analog thumb stick, and two front trigger buttons labeled 'C' and 'Z'.

The Wii Remote works for games within a distance of about 10 metres and can function as a cursor-pointer within about five metres.

Wii MotionPlus

The Wii MotionPlus is an extra peripheral that connects to the end of your Wii remote. It improves precision in gaming and allows the Wii console to recognise a more complex array of movements.

According to Nintendo, Wii MotionPlus "more quickly and accurately reflects motions in a 3-D space... Every slight movement players make with their wrist or arm is rendered identically in real time on the screen, providing a true 1:1 response in their game play."

Kinect vs. Move vs. Wii
Wii MotionPlus

New Wii consoles come bundled with MotionPlus, but owners of older Wiis will need to purchase the device separately (RRP: $34.95).

Unfortunately, MotionPlus is not backwards compatible with older Wii games. (That's bad news for anyone who'd been planning to revisit old favourites like Metroid Prime 3 or Super Mario Galaxy.) Instead, it only works with new games that have been custom-tailored to support the attachment.

The added layer of precision that MotionPlus gives you is especially noticeable in games like Wii Sports Resort with its medley of frisbee, jet ski, and kendo sims.

Games

As the best-selling console of this generation, the Wii has a huge library of motion-based games to choose from. Some standout titles include Wii Sports Resort, House of the Dead: Overkill, Mario Kart Wii, Trauma Center Second Opinion and Wario Ware: Smooth Moves — all of which utilise the Wii Remote in fun and interesting ways.

Kinect vs. Move vs. Wii

The Wii is famous for being 'kid friendly' — with the exception of House of the Dead: Overkill, all of the above games are rated PG or under. This makes the Wii a good choice for families with young children.

Pros and cons

Originally appearing in 2006, the Nintendo Wii is obviously a bit primitive compared to the Kinect and Move. It simply cannot offer the same breadth of physical responses as its fresh-faced rivals, particularly the PlayStation Move. This limits the scope of what Wii games can achieve, with less subtlety and finesse involved. The console is also heavily reliant on motion controls, whereas Sony and Microsoft offer it as an optional extra.

Kinect vs. Move vs. Wii
Wii: good for families

On the plus side, the Nintendo Wii is already a proven success and it has a huge catalogue of motion-based games to choose from. By contrast, the Kinect and PlayStation Move could easily turn out to be commercial failures, no matter how advanced their control schemes are. The release of the Wii MotionPlus has also helped to even out the playing field a little.

Pricing and availability

Wii 'MotionPlus' accessory: $34.95 RRP
Nintendo Wii console: $299 RRP

The Wii is available now.

Verdict:

The Wii Remote is beginning to show its age, especially when compared to its shiny new competitors. However, it is currently the only sure-fire winner out of the three control schemes (i.e. there's no chance of it bombing). There are hundreds of games to choose from, many of which are suitable for all ages. If you're buying from scratch, it is also the cheapest option.

Kinect vs. Move vs. Wii

It's too early to tell whether Sony and Microsoft can repeat Nintendo's success, but either way, the Wii isn't going anywhere.

Tags games consolesgamesnintendo wiiPlayStation MoveMicrosoft Kinect

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GoodGearGuide Staff

Good Gear Guide

8 Comments

exxbot

1

"On the plus side, the 'controller-free' interface adds a casual, interactive flexibility that the Wii and PlayStation Move can't match."

Point of clarification: The PS Move system has the incredible PS Eye Camera that can do full body controller free motion tracking minus the lagginess of Kinect. Such functionality will be showcased by an upcoming PS3 game called Kung Fu Live which features 1:1 full body notion tracking gameplay. Expect more controller free PS3 games to come after this one.

The PlayStation Move pretty much covers the best of both Wii & Kinect. Now that is great value!!!

Avatar

2

^ there is another game that uses this the figthing ligths out one. when you duck your lean right to dodge a punch your guy moves with you thats why i like the playstation move the best becuase it is best of bth worlds but unfortunatly i dont think it will beat the wii none of them will. maybey in the next console generation wii will have presision like the move and moption form kinect then it would be awsome

FullMetalKendo

3

@exxbot Lol at your name. Run along PS3 fanboy.

thedecider

4

1st@exxbot it is not controleer free kinect is controler free as you have hings in your hand :P and ps3 is not the best its on par wiv xbox 360
2nd nintendo wii
a great thing for little kids not very good grphics cheapest one
3rd ps3 move looks realy goodno lag good graphics but most expensive
4th xbox 360 kinect not many games more coming contoller free but u lose wiv some lag not much though 2nd in price more expensive than wii cheaper than ps3 graphics on par with ps3

my virdict
WII 3rd place
xbox
ps3
Are joint 1st

FuriousOne

5

I was playing controller-less games on my ps2, and I thought they were great. If ms have improved on the eyetoy and made it a reliable input, then I think kinect will be great fun.
Saying that I just got the ps move and think it's amazing, I don't think any of the other systems allow you to reach into game in the same way! The limitation of move is accuracy, every player has to calibrate, also the amount of space you need to play.. That being said, it's still amazing. I used to love tennis on the Wii, then I played table tennis on the move & it just so much more fun. The control is unbelievable IMO the move is top quality.
Maybe the move will be too accurate for the casual gamer?? Time will tell.

jason3064

6

these prices seem all wrong for kinect and move?

neil

7

GO WIi bloody move just copied it they need more brains

Mick

8

Wii is awesome, except it doesn't know what you're doing. eg am I doing back-hand or fore-hand. A bit frustrating.

Kinect answered wii's short-coming, but lost *everything* else!! eg no feedback. I can't imagine it being sensitive enough to know whether I'm doing topspin or slice etc??

I decided Kinect would have a short life and next generation would combine the two - cameras to track movement, but a controller for the detail wrist action, and provide feedback.

I hadn't heard of Move until today. Is it the answer?? Does the camera see that I'm running to my left, and jumping, then it or controller know that I've raised arm above head and smashing down?? Do I feel the impact as invisible racquet contacts virtual ball??

I'm kinda excited. Who's got a Move??

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