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XBox (Games) Input Devices Microsoft Upgrades Games Hardware

Microsoft Confirms Disconnecting Kinect Gives Devs 10% More GPU Horsepower 174

Posted by timothy
from the remove-airbags-install-rollcage dept.
MojoKid (1002251) writes 'Microsoft confirmed a development rumor that's been swirling around its next-generation console ever since it announced Kinect would become an optional add-on rather than a mandatory boat anchor. Lifting that requirement will give game developers 10 percent additional graphics power to play with and help close the gap between the Xbox One and PS4. The story kicked off when Xbox head Phil Spencer tweeted that June's Xbox One dev kit gave devs access to more GPU bandwidth. Further, another Microsoft representative then confirmed that the performance improvement coming in the next version of the Xbox SDK was the result of making Kinect an optional accessory. No matter how Microsoft may try to spin it, cancelling Kinect isn't just a matter of giving game developers freedom, it's a tacit admission that game developers have no significant projects in play that are expected to meaningfully tap Kinect to deliver a great game experience — and they need those GPU cycles back.' Also on the Xbox capabilities front: Reader BogenDorpher (2008682) writes 'In August of last year, a Microsoft spokesman confirmed that the Xbox One controller will be compatible for PC users sometime in 2014. That time has finally come. Windows gamers can now use the Xbox One controller to play games on their computer. If a game supports a USB gamepad or the Xbox 360 controller, it will also support the Xbox One controller.'
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Microsoft Confirms Disconnecting Kinect Gives Devs 10% More GPU Horsepower

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  • by Whatanut (203397) on Thursday June 05, 2014 @12:14PM (#47172501)

    Doesn't that then lead to a bad situation for kinect users? If you design a game that relies on that overhead, then those that don't have it will have a poor experience. Granted, you can probably just disconnect the kinect and be just fine. Be all know what the general masses will do. Complain.

  • by gstoddart (321705) on Thursday June 05, 2014 @12:21PM (#47172567) Homepage

    Or, maybe the kinds of tasks the Kinect is doing are best suited for the GPU?

    Since it's motion tracking and vision, that sounds like graphics to me.

  • by sg_oneill (159032) on Thursday June 05, 2014 @12:21PM (#47172571)

    Not really. The Kinect mostly is about image processing and highly parallel vector processing is just what that sort of application requires.

    It would have been stranger if it DIDNT rely on the GPU.

  • Why the hyperbole? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Assmasher (456699) on Thursday June 05, 2014 @12:28PM (#47172627) Journal

    No matter how Microsoft may try to spin it, cancelling Kinect isn't just a matter of giving game developers freedom, it's a tacit admission that game developers have no significant projects in play that are expected to meaningfully tap Kinect to deliver a great game experience

    First, Kinect isn't cancelled.

    Second, it isn't a tacit admission that game developers have no games coming out that meaningfully use the Kinect because game developers that need Kinect for their game simply keep using it (because it isn't cancelled...)

    It's really just what they should have done in the beginning, allowed developers to use the GPU the way they wish. I fully expect devs to allow users to pause their game, which re-enables Kinect support in order to allow me to perform whatever non-game actions I wish to initiate (like answering a Skype call.)

    What's the big hairy deal?

    Like the PS4? Buy one, enjoy.
    Like the XBox One? Buy one, enjoy.

    Christ, get over yourselves.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 05, 2014 @12:47PM (#47172807)

    Kinect died the moment they made it optional. The only way developers are going to take the risk of investing heavily in Kinect development is if they know that the entire user base has one. Now that it is optional it will suffer the same fate as virtually every other optional gimmic in the history of gaming. Lackluster support and fading into obscurity.

  • by Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) on Thursday June 05, 2014 @02:31PM (#47173757) Journal

    Well, that would be the logical way to do it. But this is Microsoft. They did release the system with a mandatory accessory that's hardly ever used, and takes away 10% of all processing power automatically. So, logic might not be something they are particularity familiar with.

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