Mind-Reading Video Games Are Ready to Hit the Shelves

Emotiv has been polishing its brain-interfacing video game console for years. In less than a month it will hit the stores, giving consumers the opportunity to play mind-controlled games from the comfort of their own homes.

We mentioned Emotiv nearly two years ago when Brian Crecente, editor of our sister site Kotaku, had a less than favorable interaction with the device (and we also suggested the technology could have some naughtier implications). However, Emotiv now believes that its neurosensor helmet, the Emotiv EPOC, is consumer-ready. The EPOC will be available to consumers in the US on December 21, and will retail for $299.

The EPOC is essentially a home EEG device, using electrodes to detect the brain's electrical activity. Earlier videos of people using the EPOC indicated that gameplay wasn't terribly smooth, so we'll have to wait and see if the consumer version offers satisfying gameplay, or just a neat bit of novelty. Below is a video of someone trying out the consumer version of the Emotiv EPOC that offers a good look at the device (unfortunately, the audio cuts out halfway through):


Nam Do, the founder of Emotiv, also plans to put this technology to other uses, such as focus testing. Rumor has it that he'll be working on focus testing James Cameron's Avatar to gauge if what audience members say about the movie matches up to what their brains are telling us.

Future tech: Interview with Emotiv co-founder Nam Do, and the science behind mind control [PC Magazine via Slashdot]