So, we finally got a Wireless Router in the apartment allowing my PS3 to once again know the unbridled joys of the internet. Now, not having the money to actually download anything of use from the PS Store (read: full games), I decided to treat myself Burnout Paradise demo.
Best part of the game for me? The game tried to, without even asking if I had a camera, snap a photo of my mug for my drivers licence with the Playstation Eye that I got bundled with Eye of Judgement (which I may go back to, but I think I may hate...).
Naturally, didn't want a picture of my gaunt, hairy face grimacing at me as I tore up Paradise City so I took a picture of a bundle of wires. Adding insult to (technologically impressive) injury, the game attempted to take a snapshot of my excited mug after another driver had ploughed into me online and severely dama-, sorry I mean Wrecked
my.. (ahem) Ride.
But, I have a dream. This wonderfully effortless exercise in interoperability has given me wild ideas about how future racing games could work.
(For the sake of argument I'm using my PS3 and other Sony things as an example, I'm sure the 360 and Live Camera etc. could be used similarly)
One loads up a game such as Burnout Paradise, the game asks to take your picture for your licence and allows you to fill in details about your age, weight and such. The game then maps your face onto the driving protagonist, making your character unique (In a massive online arenas such as those in Burnout, individuality is a treasured commodity). Further still, the camera allows you to capture graphics that you may have drawn, or may find in magazines, allowing you to adorn a prized car with them.
Take the PSP; it's inbuilt wireless could allow you to set it up for use as a rear-view mirror as a remote play option (as was. in part, reportedly happening with F1 Championship Edition, but never materialised). Further still, you could use the PSP's buttons to tune your engine or to change the radio station. Imagine also connecting a Sony Walkman to your PS3 and have access to your entire collection of music in-game!
This is undoubtedly the future, but with game development times seemingly becoming longer, how much impetus will the authors of these titles have to include features which may be deemed tertiary to the actual gameplay? I think all we can do is wait for the first real innovative use of the technology, and see if the others follow suit.