Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Wii

Nintendo confirms Wii 2 unveiling in June for 2012 launch

Nintendo will show a playable model of the next-generation Wii gaming console at E3 Expo in June. The company confirmed the reveal date in a short statement earlier today and although there's still no official word on exactly what the successor to the Wii (codenamed “Project Cafe”) holds in store, the rumors are gaining momentum.  Read More

University students have created a system for building balance skills in physically challe...

Can killing monsters help physically-challenged children learn to walk? It can if they’re virtual monsters, that are part of a balance-developing system created by engineering and computer game design students from Houston’s Rice University. Called the Equiliberator, the system consists of five linked Wii Balance Boards with two pressure-sensitive hand rails running along either side, all of which are linked by Bluetooth to a PC running a custom-designed video game. Children using the setup are able to kill on-screen monsters, by successfully performing exercises that build their balance skills.  Read More

BLAZE Induction Charger for the Nintendo Wii Mote

The arrival of viable wireless charging solutions has given us the opportunity to pull the plug on devices like mobile phones and personal media players (with televisions and electric vehicles next in line). Game controllers are another obvious candidate for this technology and BLAZE's latest offering joins the ranks of wireless-charging solutions for the Nintendo Wii remote.  Read More

Ryo Yamamoto has repurposed Wii's Balance Board, to create a Diet Chair

Here's a very clever hack of a Wii Balance Board from engineer Ryo Yamamoto that was on display at Tokyo Make Meeting 06 this past weekend. Mr. Yamamoto's "Diet Chair" is essentially just a regular chair, but with a Wii Balance Board sitting underneath the seat. What's smart about this is that it allows the chair to send feedback to the computer where the user's weight can be monitored over time.  Read More

Fender has created a Squier Stratocaster guitar that's also a game controller for Rock Ban...

Imagine the embarrassment of a talented guitarist losing out in a shredding battle with someone who can't play a note. Since the launch of games like Rock Band, such things can and do happen. Now there's a chance to level the playing field somewhat, with the forthcoming release of a game controller that's also a genuine Fender Squier Strat. Of course, as well as introducing a whole new level of gameplay to virtual axe grinders, they can also benefit from learning to play an actual instrument. Rock 'n' roll...  Read More

Motus allows users to act as a cameraperson  inside existing 3D models, such as video game...

In the creation of the film Avatar, director James Cameron invented a system called Simul-cam. It allowed him to see the video output of the cameras, in real time, but with the human actors digitally altered to look like the alien creatures whom they were playing. The system also negated the need for a huge amount of animation – every performance was captured in all its blue-skinned, pointy-eared majesty as it happened, so it didn’t need to be created from scratch on a computer. Now, researchers from the University of Abertay Dundee have built on the techniques pioneered by Simul-cam to create a new system, that lets users act as their own cameraperson within a 3D environment.  Read More

Kinect is slated for release in November for US$150

Nintendo has done very well out of its innovative motion controllers but maintaining its spot at the top of the console sales charts was always going to be an uphill battle once rivals caught up (or overtook) with their own brand of fully-interactive gaming. Project Natal seemed a little ambitious when it was first demonstrated last year, but 12 months and a rebranding later, Kinect appears to be ready for pre-order and most importantly, we have a price.  Read More

Microsoft's Kinect for Xbox 360 allows for physically-interactive gaming without a remote

The new era in gaming which began when Wii remotes started showing up in living rooms just four years ago is about to be taken to the next level. That’s because Microsoft has premiered its Kinect for Xbox 360 – a motion control system that allows players to take part in full-body physically-interactive games without the use of any remote. First coming to light a year ago under the code name Project Natal, it utilizes a CMOS camera, infrared projector and multi-array microphone to track the movements and voices of players. Kinect is set for release later this year.  Read More

The family that plays together ... the Konnet PowerV QUAD can store and charge up to four ...

If you belong to an avid Nintendo Wii gamer family chances are someone will keep forgetting to charge their Wiimote and ruin the fun for the others (or start WWIII). Thankfully, Konnet has come to the rescue. The company’s new charger lets you store and charge up to four controllers wirelessly, using advanced induction technology.  Read More

Wii 2 news and rumor roundup

Following the release of the iPad the online rumor mill now needs to find something else to focus on. The product most likely to fill that gap is Nintendo’s successor to the Wii. Since its launch in 2006, speculation has steadily been mounting about what features the next-gen Wii will pack and when it will appear. As usual, Nintendo hasn’t exactly been forthcoming with any details about its follow up console, prompting information hungry fans to gobble up any morsel of gossip. So we decided to put our ear to the ground in an attempt to glean just what the next-generation Wii will offer.  Read More

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