Motion controller Gametrax Freedom featured at GDC

By Mel

The ongoing Game Developers Conference 2009 is, as expected, turning out a wealth of interesting news and developments in the gaming front.

One of the more surprising exhibitions in the GDC is the unveiling of the Gametrak Freedom, a new motion controller that is being developed for both the Xbox 360 and the Playstation 3. News about the Gametrak Freedom first appeared last September but this is the first time that an actual product is being presented to the public.

The Gametrak Freedom kind of borrows the design layout of Nintendo’s Wii-mote but carries the color scheme of the Xbox 360 (the reason for this could be that the product will be released first on the Xbox 360 with the PS3 version following at some point in the future). The design actually looks eerily like a child’s remote control unit. Aside from the use of accelerometers that help in reading the pitch, yaw and roll of the device, the Gametrak Freedom will also use ultrasonic 3D positioning. These are two sensor bars that are placed to the sides of the display (TV), and these devices communicate with the controller through an ultrasonic siginal. These signals calculate the distance, orientation and speed of the device with uncanny precision.

Even though developers can make games for the Gametrak Freedom, the guys at Performance Designed Products (PDP) also opted to develop their own game that will take advantage of the controller. The launch game is Squeeballs.

Expect to see the Gametrak Freedom and Squeeballs in the latter half of the year.

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