Eye Toy, the PS2 webcam that revolutionized gameplay

October 2003: Playstation decided to launch a peripheral that would innovate with the gameplay seen to date. That product was the Eye Toy, a webcam like the ones everyone had at home at the time, but focused on a specific series of video games.

It recorded in color, had a resolution of 320×240 pixels and was initially manufactured by Logitech. Richard Marks had the idea when he wanted to create a technology that mixed a natural game user interface with the features of the console of the moment. In this way, Eye Toy obtained visual and gesture recognition technologies and achieved its goal: to give a 180-degree turn to the gameplay seen so far.

Its wide and varied offer of games also allowed it to open up to an audience previously unknown in video games, as would happen later with the Wii and Wii Sports and company games . Although it is true that the gameplay was not something convoluted or far-fetched, it was something unprecedented until then and that it improved Sony’s brand image.

As they claimed, their intention was that “the player be the control in the PlayStation 2 system and that it does not require any type of control, only that it interacts on the screen and that it is the character on which the story of the game is based” . And all this thanks to the augmented reality with which Pokémon Go would triumph years later .

PS2 camera

The first game to debut the peripheral was Eye Toy: Play , which featured multiple minigames for up to 8 players . In fact, the saga worked so well that up to three installments were made, each one specializing in different game themes.

The way of interacting with the HUD ( Heads Up Display, User Interface) was also quite curious. For example, to select a level or game mode, the user had to place their hand on the camera above it.

It was hard to visit a house where the tenants didn’t have a PlayStation 2 with an Eye Toy . In 2007, the peripheral reached one million sales.

In addition to the series of games of different sports , among which are ping pong, rugby football, tennis and even basketball, there is also a wide variety of dance styles and music.

One of the ones that created the most niche was Kinetic Combat , which offered an interesting range of fighting styles with daring gameplay and a wide and fun range of game modes.

play station camera

Next, we review what are the best video games that Eye Toy has left us, predecessor among others of PS Move , a peripheral that picked up the witness of trying to change the Gameplay , this perhaps more influenced by the Wii controls.

Eye Toy Olympic Games

Although it is true that the Eye Toy saga was not the only one where the peripheral could be used, it was the one that best knew how to implement the system. In Hero we put ourselves in the shoes of a character who had to face a series of challenges brandishing a sword.

The sports edition in which almost all the Olympians were included was a real triumph, making it a perfect plan for family and friends. One of the funniest exercises was undoubtedly rowing : in teams of two, you had to imitate the movement of the paddles faster than the other team to win. Winning meant breaking a sweat!

The sack race

The sack race was another one that stayed in the retina. Jumping on the spot, one had to move forward carefully not to fall, an exercise in balance and fun. In total, there were more than 100 minigames to choose from, making it almost impossible to repeat the option so that each game was practically different.

In Eye Toy: Play 3 there were small missions such as collecting volleyball shots from different rivals handled by the machine, or the endless bowling games that caused more than a little row. The application that incorporated different filters to take photos, the predecessor of those used today on Instagram and that at that time was unimaginable, is remembered with special affection.

There were not a few who welcomed the features of Eye Toy, since it forced everyone who played it to play sports and move, as well as having fun, of course. In fact, a study by Nottingham Trent University in the United Kingdom encouraged parents to buy titles of this caliber for their children.

They calculated that a child who played these games for an hour could lose up to half a kilo of weight, forcing them to invest 40% more physical energy. Games that require physical activity are a great option to combine with sports .

If you are one of those who sees something magnificent in the union of video games and sports and you are worried about having an iron health, trust the best professionals for it.

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