Geek Girl Report: Early Attempts at Motion Control Devices Led To Worst Video Game Acessories Of All Time
One of the biggest video game trends in recent years has been motion-based controls. From the Nintendo Wii to the XBox 360’s Kinect camera, games today are trying to encourage gamers to get on their feet and off the couch, with varying degrees of success. The idea of using your body to control the action on screen has actually been around since the 80s. However, those early attempts at a motion-controlled gaming device were, well…less than successful, and led to some pretty bad peripherals. Check out some of these truly terrible video game accessories.
Optimistically, you could call this the precursor to the Nintendo Wii. But in reality, the only thing this monstrosity of a motion controller had going for it was a starring role in the 1989 film The Wizard. (and if you’ve seen that particular film, you’ll know even that’s not worth bragging about…) The glove was supposed to track hand movements across the screen, but all it really did was confuse gamers with its terrible controls and way too many buttons.
Not to be outdone, Nintendo’s rival Sega also came out with their own motion control device: the Activator. Gamers stood in the middle of an octagonal ring and were suppose to control the game, usually a fighting game, by moving their bodies. It was an idea that was ahead of its time, and has been partially realized today thanks to Kinect. But back then, the technology couldn’t live up to the expectation and the device was deemed an utter, and costly, failure.
You’ve probably never heard of this little “gem” from Atari, and that’s probably for the best. This particular peripheral was suppose to let you control video games with the “power of your mind.” But all it really tracked was your facial muscles, and even that didn’t work. In the end, Atari decided not to release the Mindlink. Maybe they accurately predicted that this practically broken device wasn’t going to sell well.