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Project Natal gets a name and a November launch date

It was this time last year that Microsoft first revealed its motion controller for the Xbox 360, Project Natal. Today, Microsoft has officially announced the controller and has given it a new name. The new accessory is now called "Kinect for Xbox 360" and will be available this November.

As you may recall, Kinect is an add-on USB peripheral for the Xbox 360 that features an onboard camera, motion sensing, and multi-array microphone which allows it to capture full body movements in a 3D space. It can track 48 points of movement at 30 fps and can recognize an individuals face and voice.

You are the controller,” said Mike Delman, Corporate VP of Global Marketing for Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business. “You simply step in front of the sensor and Kinect sees you move, hears your voice and recognizes your face.”

“Some people don’t like controllers,” Delman continued. “And Kinect makes the gaming and entertainment experience more organic and free-flowing, without any of the barriers that can sometimes keep people from participating.”

According to the USA Today, there are a number of new games in the works for Kinect including:

  • Kinectimals -- Allows you to get in touch with your feline side by training cats and lions.
  • Kinect Sports -- This sounds like Wii Sports on steroids. Gamers can fully interact with such sports at boxing, bowling, and volleyball.
  • Joyride -- A racing game that forces you to hold your hands out in front of you to grasp an imaginary steering wheel.

Pricing is not yet available for Kinect (rumors have pegged the price at being as high as $150), but it is expected to launch this November.





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Kinect
By Da W on 6/14/2010 9:09:02 AM , Rating: -1
What a stupid name. They might forfeit 20% of sales right now with such a name.

Don't think it will sell well, Xbox being an old hardware due for a refresh and game developper needing at least one year to bring quality games. And for 50$ more you get a full equiped Wii with 2 games.

It is nice technology for the future though. Quickly port this one the PC please!!!! Better than touch.




RE: Kinect
By inperfectdarkness on 6/14/2010 9:20:43 AM , Rating: 2
i'm reserving judgment pending developer support. i would predict that this isn't going to have nearly as much support as even the wii (which by many standards is lacking in 3rd party support even now).

$150 is quite a bit to bite off on for something which isn't even guaranteed to be fully supported & fully integrated. if MS is the only company developing & supporting this peripheral, i'm inclined to believe that they can't possibly do a better job of controls integration than nintendo has done with the wii & it's 1st party games.


RE: Kinect
By GaryJohnson on 6/14/2010 9:38:32 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
isn't even guaranteed to be fully supported


It probably won't be unless they offer developers huge incentives.

Until it has widespread adoption they won't write games for it and until there are more games, it won't have widespread adoption.


RE: Kinect
By TSS on 6/14/2010 10:43:32 AM , Rating: 3
Intergration is mjeh. All it needs is a couple of good games that incorperate this in the right way.

A tactical shooter where you can control the soldiers body behind cover in 1st person view so you could shoot around corners, glance over the wall instead of popping your entire head up for snipers, see your teammates running around with natural postures instead of everybody running the same way. just 1 counterstrike or battlefield that does this would make me consider the $400+ i would have to pay to play that game (i don't have a xbox360).

Or an RPG where swords are really swung (2h or 1h doesn't matter, body stances will balance out the speed), arrows are really shot and spells are really cast (hand signs), with upper body evasion (dodging arrows i mean)...that would be interesting.

Hell you could even make a star trek game, Where your the captain on your ship and in long fights you not only control the ship, but leave an officer in charge, go down to engineering and replace a plasma injector that broke (taking out a cylinder that can't toutch the edges of it's containerfor instance) or do... well lots of other stuff. You get the idea.

If they slip up though it'll become a failure real fast. Like making people run in place if they want to run in game. Or make 2537 tennis games.


RE: Kinect
By ekv on 6/14/2010 12:19:19 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah. When, not so much if, the killer app comes along Natal/Kinect will definitely take off.

Personally, controllers are not the best for me. Movements like glancing from around a corner are too crude. I can see where Kinect will help out in that respect. Of course, what will the lag be. And can that be improved in future releases.

> Or make 2537 tennis games.

LOL. Probably get that anyway. Just so long as that's not the majority.


RE: Kinect
By Hiawa23 on 6/14/2010 9:22:08 AM , Rating: 2
Only prob with the Wii is it's basically a gamecube. I bought one for my daughter but donot like it's hardware. I would definitely either buy a PS3 Move, or Xbox Kinect over an enhanced Gamecube, which is what I see the Wii as. I like virtual console, & that's it.


RE: Kinect
By nvalhalla on 6/14/2010 9:34:20 AM , Rating: 3
I had to log in and point out the hypocrisy of lamenting the console for being a glorified Gamecube, and then liking it solely for playing even older games. I thought that was pretty funny!


RE: Kinect
By inperfectdarkness on 6/14/2010 10:20:59 AM , Rating: 3
if you like the games, what difference does the hardware make? or is that a scapegoat?

this sentiment reminds me of the taste-testing that coke did in the 80's when "new coke" (coke II) came out. in blind taste tests, participants consistently preferred new coke to either coke classic or pepsi. however, when conductiung the same test without participants blindfolded, new coke scored lower than either coke classic or pepsi.

dollars to doughnuts, there's a bias in your judgment (and that of many others). what difference does it make if the wii is a glorified gamecube (although it's actually not, and there's quite a bit more to it than that)? does anyone on here still play ps2 games? how about xbox 1 games? gamecube games?

that's my point. good games are good regardless of how fancy the hardware is that they're featured on.

on a personal note:

virtual console has gone down the crapper. we used to get 3 games per week, and usually at least one of those was a "must have". currently, we're lucky to have one game per week--and most of those are crap. i've no idea what the hold-up is, but you'd think games as old as desert strike, earthbound, or metal warriors would be capable of being released already. i'm truly baffled by the continued push to concentrate on wii-ware instead; which has been 90% shovelware from 3rd party developers who can use the "no inventory" nature of wii-ware to sell things which wouldn't deserve a spot in the dust-bin of a retail outlet. (possible exceptions include the notable "reinvention" games: contra, excitebike, blaster master, etc).


RE: Kinect
By Hiawa23 on 6/14/2010 11:54:54 AM , Rating: 2
if you like the games, what difference does the hardware make? or is that a scapegoat?

no scapegoat just my preference. I enjoy having fun with my daughter on her Wii, but don't really like anything for it other than Punchout, not into the party games,or the games where you are forced to use the wand. I like the virtual console cause many games I missed on the Neo Geo or Turbo graph 16 are available & cheaper than buying online. I prefer the 360 & or PS3, their games, & online structure. It's pretty simple. No one is hatin on Nintendo, kind of glad to see em back on top of the hill.


RE: Kinect
By Hiawa23 on 6/14/2010 12:15:35 PM , Rating: 3
dollars to doughnuts, there's a bias in your judgment (and that of many others). what difference does it make if the wii is a glorified gamecube (although it's actually not, and there's quite a bit more to it than that)? does anyone on here still play ps2 games? how about xbox 1 games? gamecube games?

No bias at all, as I own every Nintendo console since the Nes, & love em all except the Wii. I still play many of my xbox games, not so much PS2, & the only Gamecube games I liked were the RE games, & Metroid. You are right, whether you like the hardware or not means nothing, but if the reason why you don't like the hardware is because the games really don't look great to you, especially on a HDTV, or you don't like many of the casual or party games, or the online structure then the hardware has everything to do with it. I didn't care for the PS2's hardware but loved many of it's games. At this stage in my life the only games I like are sports, shooters, action, fighters, & online play.

I honestly don't know why it's so hard for many of you to understand. Everyone has preferences, has nothing to do with being bias toward one console maker or the other. The Wii games just don't appeal to me, but I am looking forward to see what Nintendo shows us at E3 this year.


RE: Kinect
By Jellodyne on 6/14/2010 5:20:09 PM , Rating: 2
You're totally right, I don't need hig def or surrond sound. In fact I mostly still play on my old Degenatron. Save the green dots with your fantastic flying red square!


RE: Kinect
By sprockkets on 6/14/2010 6:15:56 PM , Rating: 2
uh, didn't they release earthbound? I was waiting for Super Mario RPG, and that is released too.


RE: Kinect
By inperfectdarkness on 6/14/2010 9:22:10 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
An ESRB rating suggesting an EarthBound release for the Wii Console has since surfaced; however, no official plans concerning this release have been announced.


taken directly from wikipedia. i watch virtual console like a hawk. earthbound has not been released.


RE: Kinect
By biohazard75 on 6/14/2010 9:25:17 AM , Rating: 3
must point out irony:
you state Kinect is a stupid name then 1 paragraph later reference the Wii, which is universally regarded as having launched with the worst product name for a console ever.


RE: Kinect
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 6/14/2010 9:28:54 AM , Rating: 5
I still think that the iPad tops them all when it comes to stupid product names.


RE: Kinect
By superPC on 6/14/2010 9:40:36 AM , Rating: 2
How would this connect to the xbox 360? if it's connected through the USB port that would make it easier to port. heck people port the wiimote to the PC. and remember that microsoft made the driver for xbox 360 controller available for the PC. maybe they themself would release a driver for kinect. this would be a fine addition to my HTPC set up. now i don't need that wireless mouse. and wouldn't it be cool to use gesture ala minority report?


RE: Kinect
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 6/14/2010 9:40:40 AM , Rating: 2
USB port


RE: Kinect
By Aikouka on 6/14/2010 10:20:29 AM , Rating: 2
Microsoft will most likely release support for Kinect in their XNA Development Studio, which is free for anyone to download.

But do realize the difference between Kinect and a WiiMote. The WiiMote is not much different than those Gyration devices you can buy, and Kinect is a whole different animal. Chances are a ton of aspects of motion tracking are handled by Microsoft's (aforementioned) APIs.


RE: Kinect
By hduser on 6/14/2010 1:04:02 PM , Rating: 2
I agree about the name. It certainly doesn't roll off the tongue. I can't tell if it's supposed to be connect or kinetic. I guess they're relay both but fails miserably IMO. I don't know why the name bothers me so much. It just feels incomplete. I wished they stuck with Natal.


RE: Kinect
By Phoque on 6/14/2010 3:46:52 PM , Rating: 2
I really don't like the name either. It feels like a savvy technical word nobody knows or care about. I would have find it a lot more meaningfull and appealing if it had been called something like the "kin eye" or the "ICU" (I see you).


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