Xbox 360 Kinect by Microsoft. The Microsoft elves will have no problem differentiating their motion-controlling product from Nintendo's or Sony's. In fact, this might be the first salvo in future holodeck! The Kinect ($149.99) doesn't use controllers. The combination of cameras and infrared sensors map your body and track your movements while voice commands are registered by a microphone. Need to push a button to jump over something in a game? Just jump. Need to kick a digital foe in the head? Just do it. Kinect seems friendlier for young gamers, as there aren't any control or button sequences to learn. Try Kinectimals ($49.99), a game in which one befriends wild animals and teaches them tricks - it seems like magic. (Available at Best Buy, Target, Walmart)
PlayStation Move Motion Controller by Sony. Many gamers initially thought Sony merely made the Move as a copycat-motion device, content to ride the coattails of the more popular Wii. If anything, it is a vast improvement over the nunchakus, with more precision in terms of measuring movements. The Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 ($59.99) has been updated so it can use the Move controller and is by far the best motion- controlling
golf title produced. Move costs $49.99 for the controller, but you will need the PlayStation Eye hardware ($39.99) if you don't already have it with your Play- Station 3 system. (Avail- able at Best Buy, Target, Walmart, game stores)
Call of Duty: Black Ops by Activision ($59.99, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC, Wii, DS) The latest in a long line of successful titles bearing the Call of Duty name, Black Ops doesn't need any fancy-shmancy control mechanism, just smart computer-controlled enemies, covert operations behind enemy lines, and enough mayhem that your own country won't want you back by the time the game is over. One of the most popular shooters of all time returns with better weapons, even more bizarre multiplayer modes (placing wagers on your success perhaps?), and a mode where gamers can edit movies out of their bullet-ridden exploits. (Amazon.com)
Super Mario All-Stars. ($29.99, Nintendo Wii) This compilation has all four titles, celebrating the plumber's 25th anniversary, including Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels, Super Mario Bros. 2 and Super Mario Bros. 3. All are graphically enhanced to look fabulous on new TVs. The package comes complete with a CD of Mario music throughout the years and a 32-page tome. I might buy two!