GDC 09: check out the GameTrak Freedom, the 360 Wiimote

One look at the remote above, and I have to admit I feel my heart sinking a little. I like my 360 exactly how it is — it doesn’t need motion control. Well, that’s only the way I feel: enthusiasts of the Wii’s control scheme may be wishing their 360 had a remote to work with. Thanks to Performance Designed Products, this remote will be compatible with the Xbox 360 later this fall, and a PS3 version may be coming in the future as well.

Instead of waiting for developers to work on titles specifically designed for the remote, PDP has actually decided to design their own with the help of UK developers In2Games. Called Squeeballs, it’s a distinctive looking minigame collection that features 11 different games. I like the look of the games, but the fact it’s a minigame collection makes me cringe a little, I’ll admit. Anyway, check out the trailer for Squeeballs after the jump.

The GameTrak Freedom will be in Q4 of this year. There’s no pricing set as of yet, but we’ll likely find out fairly soon. In addition, PDP also unveiled a product called the SmartStylus which can be used with the Nintendo DS. it basically sounds like a stylus that vibrates to me, which moves into dirty territory with frightning swiftness the more I think about it. We’ll bring you more on that as it comes, but for now the product is still awaiting licensing from Nintendo.

Are you interested in using a remote to play the 360? If so, why?

[Picture Via IGN]

PDP Unveils New Technology at Game Developers Conference

Motion sensing technology and smart styluses provide gamers a new dimension of game play

LOS ANGELES – Performance Designed Products (“PDP”) unveiled its latest technology that will
change the face of gaming, introducing two new products at this week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. Gametrak Freedom™ is a proprietary and patent-pending ultrasonic 3D motion sensing technology that delivers performance, increased control and flexibility. The system is comprised of a base unit, which attaches to the Xbox 360 console via USB, and a hand-held controller. Unlike other motion sensing gaming systems, Gametrak Freedom™ does not rely on the gamer pointing a controller at the screen nor does it
restrict the gamer to limited movements. The system accurately tracks the true 3D position and precise movements of up to four players anywhere within a given environment. This technology provides players with total control and unrivaled game play opportunities.

PDP will launch the Gametrak Freedom™ exclusively for the Xbox 360 in fall 2009. The system will be bundled with “Squeeballs™,” a game specifically developed to showcase the technology. “Squeeballs™” is a collection of over 150 unique challenges that showcases the capabilities of the controller. In the game, Squeeballs are toys that are manufactured on a secret island somewhere in the Pacific. Before the Squeeballs can be sold to children across the world, they must be fully tested by the players of the game. By using the controller, players can blow up, cook, slice, bat, bowl, shoot and bounce the Squeeballs with
greater accuracy than is capable with any other controller.

PDP also unveiled the new revolutionary wireless SmartStylus™ 1 and 2 devices for the Nintendo DS™. The patent-pending SmartStylus™ 1 and 2 both feature a vibration feedback that players using the stylus will feel based on movements and commands in the game. The SmartStylus™ 2 can include a variety of added features, including LED’s, sound, and motion feedback. With the motion feedback capability, the stylus can now act as a motion input device, allowing you, for example, to hit a home run by swinging the stylus off the DS screen. The SmartStylus™ 1 will launch this fall and is pending licensing by Nintendo.

“The technologies offered by both the Gametrak Freedom™ and the SmartStylus™ tools are the first of their kind,” said John Moore, senior vice president of marketing for the California-based PDP. “PDP is excited to be introducing these new technologies. They will create a new level of gaming that can be enjoyed by the whole family.”

PDP enjoyed a big year in 2008, with increased sales year over year compared with 2007. The
company will be introducing several new gaming products in 2009.

About PDP
Performance Designed Products is an industry leader in designing and manufacturing products for all major video game platforms including the Sony PS2, PS3, and PSP; Nintendo Wii, GameCube, and DS; and Microsoft Xbox and Xbox 360. The company has been supplying video game accessories to the U.S. market for more than a decade. PDP sells products under a variety of brands, with sales in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and throughout Europe. For more information on PDP and its products, visit

Patriarch Partners LLC, is a private equity investment firm with offices in New York, Charlotte, North Carolina and Dallas, Texas. Funds affiliated with Patriarch manage assets in excess of $6 billion and include majority and minority ownership positions in more than 70 companies. Founded by Lynn Tilton in 2000, Patriarch provides innovative financial solutions, strategic direction and operational expertise to its portfolio companies.

© 2009 Performance Designed Products LLC. Gametrak Freedom, Gametrak, Squeeballs, and SmartStylus are trademarks of Performance Designed Products LLC and/or Performance Designed Products Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

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Colette Bennett
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