So, all the console hardware manufacturers shone a spotlight on motion control solutions, as Nintendo promised more refinement via the Wii Motion Plus, Microsoft unveiled Project Natal and Sony showed off the working-title Playstation Motion Control. With the Wii’s runaway success, it’s no surprise that Sony and Microsoft are presenting ways of integrating gestural control into their systems.
But the glaring thing that stuck out to me was that–if eventually all things become equal in terms of ideas, implementation and ease of use–Nintendo’s not so unique anymore. Moreover, if gestural control just becomes that all consoles can do, then the hardware limitations of the Wii become a harsh liability. Say the PS3, 360 and Wii all offer a tennis game where you swing a hand or a device to hit the virtual ball. Wouldn’t going with the system you already have or, if you’re in the market for a new system, the one with the best graphics seem like a better choice? Could Nintendo’s brand of cute fend off better graphical sizzle if the Wii-mote's not so special anymore?
Remember, Apple wasn’t the first company to make an MP3 player. They were just the ones who figured out how to do it best. Nintendo may find themselves having to scramble for the Next Thing sooner than they were expecting.