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Look at the mechanics of trying to force those balls along their path when the vector of the force created by combustion is like 60 degree off the path of the grooves. It would be like trying force a piston sideways in the bore. It has to create tremendous side loading on the grooves and little balls.
Johnny, I thought the same thing when I saw it too. I can't imagine those grooves putting up with that. I think you're right about torque load too, that seems like it would just be too much. Seems to me the only way it could work well is if you try to exploit the continuous motion. So, spin it really fast and try to keep it spinning fast with lots of little explosions.
If it's really light and compact it might work for lawn equipment or something, right? Say, for a weedwacker or a leafblower, if you combined the engine with some kind of slipper clutch, so those ceramic balls and grooves weren't subjected directly to severe torque loads. ??
I am SO not an engineer, but it does look like a neat idea.

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