Mind-Controlled Video Game Gets a Tryout in Japan

By Eliza Strickland | October 9, 2008 5:12 pm

mind control video gameAt the Tokyo Game Show today, a video game player strapped on a headset and, without touching a conventional video game controller, began to kill zombies–using only the power of his mind. Called “Judecca,” the PC game is a zombie-killing first-person-shooter, though it’s really just a proof of concept and not something that’s going to be available to consumers anytime soon [Fox News].

The game was produced by leading Japanese studio Square Enix and makes use of a brainwave-sensing headset from NeuroSky, a San Jose-based company that develops biometric sensors and similar products aimed at the consumer market [PC World]. NeuroSky’s “Mindset” device looks like a big pair of headphones with a single electrode that wraps around to tap the wearer’s forehead; the company says the device uses electroencephalography (EEG) to measure the current state of relaxation or concentration of players.

The game made its debut at the Game Show today, and the first reports are coming in from bloggers who tried the system and figured out how to use the headset to wreak havoc on the zombie world. After holding up your hand, you then concentrate on a glyph that glows in direct relation to your ability to concentrate, opening up what’s called your Devil’s Eye. Once you’re in a zen-like state, you can see Judecca’s zombies and unleash some kill. You can also show your concentration skills enough to walk through walls, naturally [Tech News Time].

Entertainment that makes use of recent developments in machine-brain connections seems sure to emerge in the coming decade. Square Enix hasn’t announced whether it will push forward to produce a commercial game with the technology, but NeuroSky has said that its Mindset is a simple, plug-and-play device that could be used in many different gaming systems. NeuroSky also recently had a competition for game concepts that would use the Mindset and would run on the Nintendo system.

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Image: Business Wire

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Mind & Brain, Technology
  • http://wizardofosmond.deviantart.com WizardofOz

    This is pretty cool news! Basic mental-controlled applications have existed for a while, but it’s cool to see actual video game companies taking a serious look into mind-controlled video games and peripherals!

  • Justin

    I think this is so exciting. Just think! We will be able to specifically train our minds through the fun of gaming! This could be an incredible meditation tool. By training people to focus for a relatively silly purpose (killing zombies), we would be training it to focus in general. Making a child’s mind work on several different complex tasks at one time will, if nothing else, make them be able to multi-task easier later on in life. The best designers in the world (Square Enix) are developing this technology! Who knows what doors to the mind they may unlock.

  • Shannon

    I wonder how much of a step it would be to turn that ‘mind-control’ to physical applications. I’ve seen science shows that have a mokey (or a rat?) controlling an arm to do something through brainwaves. I think it would be great if we could use these applications to retrain people who have lost a limb to use a prosthetic.

    Exciting times in technology ahead!

  • Eddie

    @ Shannon.

    Actually I saw something interesting. If a person is paralyzed they can wear a “mobility suit” that moves them . How does it move ? It uses a similar technology to “read” your mind .
    Now that’s pretty cool.

  • http://@Spain Carl0s

    I find it quite frightening. No one thinks about the implications on mind reading devices in the wong hands. Is our last oasis of intimacy under siege?

  • http://@Spain Carl0s

    Sorry i meant “in the wrong hands”

  • Scooterman

    It’s the next step, and as for “mind reading”, a device that detects minor variations in brain waves is as far from a mind reading device as an arrow is from an MX missile!!! We are in no way technologically advanced enough for such a thing to be anything but science fiction for many, many years to come.

  • Danorock

    Can you imagine the implications that this might have with regards to…ahem…adult entertainment? Imagine mind controlled imagery paired with robotic “toys”! Now that’s a money maker!

  • Sarah

    Sweet! I’ve been dreaming of the day something like this would come out since I started watching anime and reading manga. I’ll be patiently waiting more, now that I know my dreams will more than likely be answered soon.

  • Chris

    Dude I have been waiting for mind controlled games to come out and I have been wondering when it would come out and what would happen if you could control bullets the same way you could control the game on here. As Danorock says in regards of adult entertainment I dont think they will make virtual adult entertainment for those purpose.

  • http://s s

    We have the technology to do everything everyone suggested, but it is still not cost effective.

  • place

    well chris i dont see any reason why people wouldn’t cash in on the medium for adult entertainment at some point… but its unlikely that we would see something like that until the idea is more well grounded

  • http://benidinlermisin.blogspot.com Wolf Master

    Such a great blog post! Thank you very much for sharing this article!

  • Darain

    When will they let us play these mind controllers is my question and when will they show us more about these, and when will they be used in game systems in a mass production type deal.???????????????????????

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