Well, in a manner of speaking. Phil Spencer (VP of Microsoft Game Studios) has said that the company views Kinect being â€œas core as Xbox Liveâ€ for the Xbox 360. In the future, he added, core gamers can expect to see Kinect being utilised across all genres of games on the Microsoft console.
The Xbox Live analogy is a useful one. Every Xbox 360 game has at least rudimentary Xbox Live support built in for comparing achievements with friends or perhaps downloading new content. Other titles utilise the service a lot more, with multiplayer aspects utilising matchmaking and friends lists, to social network functionality built in (Facebook, Twitter etc).
According to Spencer, this fundamental Xbox Live functionality that is built into all titles will be mimicked with Kinect. This implies that Kinect functionality will eventually become a part of every first-party Xbox 360 game, just like Xbox Live is (albeit not only for first-party titles). The feature may be there, but it doesn’t make it essential for players to use it, so no need to panic just yet if Kinect hasn’t blown your skirt up.
â€œI think over time for first party, you’re not going to see that differentiation between ‘Is that a Kinect game?’ and ‘Is that not a Kinect game?’ You’re just going to think about these things as 360 games. Now that doesn’t mean there’s no controller included. This is just like Live, since Live is used in many different ways across many different experiences that we build.â€
Considering the amount of money Microsoft has sunk into Kinect’s development, it would be imprudent for Microsoft not to adopt this attitude towards future releases. Just remember, Spencer pointed at â€œfirst-partyâ€ titles and not every single future Xbox 360 game.
Last Updated: October 26, 2010