If you were paying attention to the Microsoft press conference at E3 this year, then you would agree that their business focus for the coming year rested almost solely on integrating the Kinect device across their hardware and software, with numerous games teasing some sort of Kinect interactivity. But all this new energy being poured into the Kinect is going to mean that you have to buy one, as it won’t be a compulsory feature for Xbox owners who are happy to play games with just the regular controller.
Xbox chief financial officer Dennis Durkin explained how the company wants people to embrace the Kinect, use it out of choice instead of being forced to purchase the device.
I don’t think we’re trying to put any input paradigm, enforce that on anyone, unless it’s better," Durkin said. "We’re not trying to force anything. If people want to do it and they think it enhances the experience, I think consumers will embrace it and they’ll do it, but that’s the bar that they’ll expect.
And there will be a bunch of experimentation, some of it will work and some of it won’t. The things that work, people will emulate and they’ll chase and the things that don’t, people will try other experiments.It’s got to be experience driven. Whether it be leveraging voice to do menu navigation, or to command troops, you saw Mass Effect, leveraging that within this ecosystem to decide which path do I want to go down and using that or directing troops. So I think you’re seeing experimentation with voice.
It’s just to try to make that experience better and easier for that user
I’ve been wanting to get a Kinect for a while now, but the lack of proper titles that effectively utilise this device is few and far between. Still, if Microsoft can bring out the best of this little machine and give us games that are enjoyable when using it, and form an effective and essential part of the gaming experience, then they’ll have another loyal customer.
Last Updated: July 20, 2011