Just when the Wii is threatening to turn gamers into athletes, neuro-engineering company Emotiv has invented a way to play games without moving at all. The Epoc Neuro-headset is a device that you can strap to your head, like a bicycle helmet, and simply 'think' your way around a game, emoting, acting, and expressing in about 30 different ways, including pushing, winking, and appearing meditative.
The device, derived from EEGs in medical technology, works by detecting electrical signals in various parts of the brain and reproducing the symptoms of these signals in your avatar. "If you laughed or felt happy after killing a character in a game," explains Emotiv president Tan Le, "then your virtual buddy could admonish you for being callous." Not my virtual buddies.
For paralysed gamers, the Epoc obviously has huge potential, but I suspect it has a long way to go before it can realistically free the rest of us from our corporeal dependence on keyboards, mice, and highly ergonomic wireless controllers. The device will go on sale later this year, retailing at around £150.