EXCLUSIVE: Behind the Scenes with SCEA Research & Development (Part 1)

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During E3, we showcased a prototype for a new controller launching next year. We know you probably have a lot of questions, so we sat down with Richard Marks and Anton Mikhailov, two of the main brains behind the new controller, to get some insight on the E3 demo, the back-story behind development, and the future of this new technology.

Today, you’ll get an inside look at our R&D team—more specifically, who they are, what they do and how they took camera technology to the next level with the new controller. Check out the video below.

We’ll be posting more interviews with Rick and team over the next few weeks. Expect more info here soon…

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  • Awesome!First!

  • Woo! =) Nice interview!!!! ^^!

  • Sweet interview

  • I just don’t see the point in this. It appears SIXAXIS is just being forgotten about. Should have put this type of technology built into the PS Controller to make a seamless experience between motion games and standard controller games. I hate to call out names, but at least Microsoft is trying something without any things to wag around. Personally I just don’t see the benefit on this project.

  • These guys at R&D deserve way more credit for what they’ve created. Keep up the good work.

  • can’t wait

  • Sadly this tech seems really disappointing. I’ll probably buy it anyway to support you, but Natal is going to eat us alive.


  • Please show is such videos more often (R&D stuff, or pure in development stuff). And pack those vids on game discs too… It’s not like we have up to 50GB of space on the discs^^

  • JoE…we had that with eyetoy…on ps2 lol

  • Really amazing stuff guys. what I would really like to see is some R&D videos on cross game chat, and ps2 emulation, so everyone can stop crying.

  • very sweet inside looke at what is going on with the PS3 & the user interface please keep those kinds of interviews coming its nice 2 know stuff is being worked on behind the scenes

  • Natal will be cool but what is missing (and i think is required and will likely have to be added in the future) is the tactical and feedback mechanisms. That this tech has: colour, rumble, buttons (pressure sensitive).

    Get ready for wii motion plus plus, natal 1.5, natal 2.0 – this just seems (won’t know until i can try it) more complete.

    I see all kinds of potential here and as always it will be about the games not the tech itself.

  • @4 I agree with you also about the forgotten abilities of the SIXAXIS. Honestly this technolgy is great for kids which I do understand PS3 needs more audience for as well as female gamers. What works for Nintendo doesn’t always work for everyone else. I think they should focus more on the Remote Play which need more improvements.

  • pretty cool.

  • Wow, I didn’t think the wand was this advanced and filled to the brim with neat stuff like the ball changing color, rumble and an analogue trigger.

    Gonna be real interesting to see how devs are gonna use it.

  • Great video. I really cannot wait for this motion controller. It looks so precise and the PS Eye tracks it just right. I have a feeling we will see some very awesome software to make use of it.

  • Super cool! Can’t wait for the controllers to release!

  • Wagggle lol.

  • joE##### (numbers i forgot aobut)

    umm… I’m pretty sure this tech didn’t exist when they builty the SIXAXIS and dualshock controllers. Also, Natal is pretty much just mimicking the movement you would do and ith appens on scren. While that’s fine for sports games and skateborading, but what about say, Halo where your goning to be running around a lot . to make it work, you have to be running around all the time otherwise Natl will have been just a waste or marketing. Do you really want to be jumping and running around you room or living room just to play a good game of say, Gears of war? No. That’s why Sony made the peripheral that you have to wag around. This way they can add buttons to make things like this a bit easier. sorry if i sound like a jerk.

  • Awesome Interview :)

    What surprise too. we never get these kind of special interviews.

    i guess on this blog you can expect full of surprises

  • Yeah, Natal is probably more impressive tech, but sometimes it’s simple that is more important. Look at Wii, it was simple and now Sony and Microsoft are taking motion controls a lot more seriously.

    This is simple, but it works and there’s no delay, it’s 1:1 tracking, there’s tactile feedback and, when it doesn’t require it, the camera/microphone array can do a lot on its own without the wand.

    Natal is impressive, but there is a delay between movement and what happens on screen, but it’s very limited due to lack of buttons.

    Motion controls really do not interest me though.

  • It was good to see the motion controller in action, with an actual explanation of how it works. Good stuff. The fidelity from physical motion to what happens on screen is impressive. I’m interested to see what kind of games will utilize it.

  • very nice interview.. thanks
    cant wait for part 2

  • Good interview. He seemed a little dull in the E3 presentation but in this interview he seems a lot more knowledgeable and a lot more comfortable speaking. Thanks Richard Marks.

  • When I saw the twitter update about this post I thought it must be easy to do the research part. Look at the blog posts: ‘in game xmb in game xmb in game xmb in game xmb’ and ‘cross game voice chat cross game voice chat cross game voice chat’.

    Anyway, I’m going to shut up now.

  • Thanks Chris/Rick.

    This looks absolutely amazing.

    Can’t believe Rick says it’s not only 60 FPS, but can handle 120 FPS.

    I’ll be getting it when it comes out for sure.

    Keep up the great work !

  • sony needs a house of the dead type of shooter game to go with the wand…only reason i even have a wii lol

  • Love this!

  • Fantastic!
    This is exactly what I want from the playstation blog

    More of this please.

  • @21- I agree, I think without a controller there’s going to be a lot of mental disconnect that might alienate a lot of gamers.

    Natal is an impressive piece of tech, but it’s applications aren’t really in the realm of gaming.

  • Does the motion controller have an analog stick? It needs to have one.

  • off subject but was wondering can you incorporate a caller I.D. function so I can screen calls while still playing a game and be able to turn it on or off??????????????????


  • very cool indeed, i cant wait for this to come out..

    but sony please commit to making games for it.

    1. you have to lead the way for other developers to follow.

    2. i bought the playstation eye for the game eye of judgment, i liked it a lot, but after that? nothing.. no more games, so it just sits there waiting for someone to make more games for it.

  • very cool interview, I would love to see more of these not only with R&D, but other teams as well

  • Richard Marks and SCEA R&D are my heros!
    The accuracy is what makes this the best motion controller!
    As a core gamer accuracy is EVERYTHING!
    Thank you!

  • Firefox hates the videos on this site. The slightest scroll over stops the playback.

  • I would love to see the more graphical games that are in development. Its all sweet stuff, I’m just eager to see how far developers are going to go. A real graphic heavy boxing game should be the sweet spot far tech like this! Excited! I am.

  • @37 Violator
    I have the latest Firefox both Mac OSX and PC Vist and they both work perfectly.

  • lol, my names Anton…

  • @39EnforcerX
    Maybe its the plugins I have installed.

    On topic R&D needs to work closer with developers.

  • Dr. Marks, I know you mention buttons and analog trigger, but does it have an analog stick like the an L3 or R3 on the DS3?

  • Wow, the motion tracking you guys have developed is head and shoulders above anything I’ve seen. Nearly perfect 1:1 tracking. Take THAT Nintendo, lol. Kudos guys. I LOVE the idea of what Wii wanted to do, but it just wasn’t good enough for me to spend money on. THIS is exactly what I wanted Wii to be…and I don’t eeven have too buy anothe system for iti……eeeexcelent *like Mr. Burns*

    Anyway, when this technology launches, reallyhope there is an Oblivion-esque RPG that comes out at the same time. And a Jedi vs Sith game is a MUST. I hope you guys are working with Lucas Arts already on that because for this tech to be a real success, it needs a couple incredible game to go with it right at launch, and a Jedi based sword combat game is the obvious choice for a healthy dose of WIN.

  • NATAL is ok but it’s nowhere on the level of this . I have a 360 and ps3 and i wont be buying project natal for two reason 1 if your room is not fully lighted it won’t pick up anything , i do not care what microsoft say or what actor they pay to say it will not work . 2 there alot of games natal will not work on FPS, driving games, sports games people want to feel a controler when they play those kinds of games and those kinds of games make all the sales.

  • I love videos like this. Really interesting stuff.

  • Why not just make a glowing ball that plugs into the mini USB port on the dualshock? Combine the new position sensing ability with the existing sixaxis sensors. Same thing right? This will make the add-on cheaper and therefore more ubiquitous. Genius eh?

  • This is definitely up there as one of my favorite PSB posts… >.>
    Pretty badass

  • This is definitely better than Natal. The only thing Natal has going for it are the gullible media and uneducated consumers.

  • I love this tech! It looks really awesome and I can think of some great games that use it… I hope you guys have more cool videos, cause I really love tech stuff like this.

  • Jesus will you fanboys stop talking about better than this and better than that.

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