Among the titles for the PS3's Move motion controller being shown off at the Game Developers Conference today is Sports Champions, a very familiar sounding casual sports title.
Sports Champions will include half a dozen casual sports that can be played with one or two of the microphone-like Move controllers in hand.
On display at the event were Table Tennis and Gladiator, but the other games are Frisbee Golf, Archery, Beach Volleyball and Bocci.
Gladiator had me holding a Move controller in each hand. My right hand's controller let me move my weapon about, in this case a giant mallet, my left hand's controller moved the shield.
A short training session explained that I had to turn my body, and pull my right hand back to better block with my left-handed shield. It also demonstrated that the controller can precisely detect the power of my swings and whether or not I was twisting my shield.
Unlike Wii Sports Resort's take on sword play, Gladiator felt a bit more controlled, requiring more tactics and finesse. Both games are still a far cry from the real experience of swinging a bladed weapon with any real one-to-one motion tracking, but I can see myself playing Gladiator more than Swordplay.
Gladiator allowed me to rack up power meter, once filled I could press a button to unleash a devastating two-hit combo. The first was just my normal swing, the second had me mimicking a motion flashing on the screen. I could also work an opponent to the edge of the ring and try to knock them out. When I was pushed to the edge I had to stick my arms out to the sides and waggle them to prevent falling, presenting a very enticing target for my enemy.
I could also swing both controller quickly up in the air and then down to trigger and jump attack. Putting my hands on my hips triggered a taunt.
The person demoing the game for me told me there would be a wider selection of enemies, all portrayed in typical action-game fashion. He said there will also be a wide assortment of unlockable weapons, including some "strange" ones.
Table Tennis was the other game I had a chance to spend some time playing.
While volleying in the game was very precise, allowing me to execute heavy spins, lobs and slams, I was thrown a bit by the serving mechanism, which I could never quite master.
To play this game use use a single controller, and the camera watches your body location to see how sideways you're turned to the screen and, much more importantly, how close or far away you are from the table.
Serving required pressing a button to toss the ball up and then swinging the controller to hit the ball. Despite having no issues in volleys, every time I tried to serve I ended up mistiming the serve which caused the ball to magically freeze in mid air until I hit it.
Once the ball was in action, though, it was an amazing experience, perfectly detecting how I held the paddle to let me serve up slices and spins with perfect precision. It also did a great job of knowing where I was standing in relation to the table, so when I stepped back to lob a shot it reacted perfectly and when I crowded the table to slam the ball that worked too.
Maybe the serve issues I was having were all me, but I'd love to see it tweaked. If that gets worked out, this could be a fantastic game.