Tags: kinect, microsoft, videgames, xbox 360
With the November 4th launch date just around the corner there’s a lot of buzz around Microsoft’s new Xbox 360 peripheral, Kinect. Originally called “Project Natal” Kinect is Microsoft’s first attempt at creating a controller free gaming experience. The new product has been given an advertising budget of five hundred million dollars, significantly more than the advertising budget for the Xbox 360 console’s launch. That money has been seen in the form of television advertisements, Time Square billboard ads, and a plug on the Oprah Winfrey show. Microsoft is spending so much money in the hopes of out performing it’s two main rivals, Nintendo’s Wii and the new Playstation Move. Unlike both of its competitors Kinect allows the users to control the console functions with his or her body and voice. Microsoft’s social media network, Windows Live Messenger will now have video chat capabilities. This new application will use Kinect’s ability to track movement using motorized sensors to ensure that the user always stays in frame even while moving. The new video chat application also allows users to watch movies with friends via Windows Live Messenger. Though the new interface and voice activation feature sound amazing the games themselves seem to be lagging. So far there have been roughly 15 new game title releases for Kinect, the large majority of which center around exercise and dancing. Microsoft has said that some of the new games will be Kinect compatible and that others will be Kinect only games. The company has developed new packaging for these games to distinguish them from standard Xbox 360 games. Though the majority of the game play released seems fluid and natural none of the titles seem worth while. At $150 for a starting package it would probably be best to wait until more noteworthy games are announced.