You can use your spine as a third thumbstick playing the Xbox One, Microsoft Reveals

Xbox One and Kinect make for some very interesting gameplay possibilities.

Posted By | On 17th, Jun. 2013 Under News

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Biometric gameplay has always been a nebulous promise, from the Wii Vitality Sensor to Valve’s attempts at it over the years. But now, it seems like Microsoft might be incorporating some of it into gameplay properly with their much maligned Xbox One’s famed Kinect sensor integration.

Digital Spy reports that a closed tech demo at E3 was able to take into account how players were leaning, what direction, what angle, their posture, and in conjunction with the controller itself, treat it as a third analog controller input.

The idea, Microsoft says, came from how people naturally tend to move themselves and their controllers while playing racing games. “This racing scenario where people are leaning into turns has us really bothered,” Jeff Henshaw explained to onlookers from the media.

“We really wanted to find a way to get that leaning incorporated into the game.”

He proceeded to explain that the Xbox One, along with the Kinect, was now advanced enough to ‘see’ the player’s posture, and to inter

“It sees the lean and it factors that lean into the game in ways that are perfectly natural, and still using the controller to move, aim and shoot, but my spine is actually being treated as a third thumbstick, one that’s not manifested physically on the controller,” he explained.

“In fact, game developers call an API to access Kinect that makes my spine and torso look to the game exactly like another thumbstick, including full 360-degree motion. It’s easy for the game developer to build these kind of features, and it’s super easy for the player to do them.”

It sounds like an interesting feature, but will very many games actually incorporate it beyond just gimmicks?

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