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Input Devices Microsoft Games

Is Microsoft's Kinect a Gaming Failure? 130

MojoKid writes "E3 is well underway in Los Angeles, and Microsoft has already made a major splash with its 'SmartGlass' technology, game demos, and its announcement that a Kinect-powered version of Internet Explorer will debut on the Xbox 360. This is a marked change from last year, when Kinect was the unquestioned centerpiece of Microsoft's display and the company's demos focused on how Kinect-powered games used your full body as a controller. Kinect is in the interesting position of having sold extremely well while failing to move the bar forward in any of the ways Microsoft projected in the run up to its launch. Scroll through the ratings on Kinect-required titles, and the percentages are abysmal. Kinect's biggest problem is rooted in ergonomics. Gamepads with buttons may be crude approximations of real life, but they're simple and intuitive. They're also flexible — a great many games have conditional scenarios that allow the same button to perform different functions depending on what's going on within the game. Pure Kinect games don't have a simple mechanism to incorporate these features, and there's no easy way around them. The motion-controller's most enduring features may ultimately be its capabilities outside the gaming sphere."
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Is Microsoft's Kinect a Gaming Failure?

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  • by cpu6502 ( 1960974 ) on Wednesday June 06, 2012 @05:16PM (#40237341)

    QUOTE: " Kinect's biggest problem is rooted in ergonomics. Gamepads with buttons may be crude approximations of real life, but they're simple and intuitive."

    I wish Nintendo would let players *choose* if they want to use the motion sensor, or a controller. I wasted 3 hours trying to beat the *first* boss in Metroid Prime 3. If I had been able to use the standard Gamecube controller as the previous games, it would have been dead in mere minutes.

    Pikmin and Zelda: TZ and Sonic Adventure 5(?) were also a pain in the butt. Fortunately I was able to go back to the Gamecube versions and play them instead with a solid functional controller. The Wii's motion control is okay for simple games like tennis or bowling, but a PITA for complex games.

    BTW I'm not the only one to make this complaint. The guys over at speeddemosarchive also complained that MP3's controls were a mess and often don't register inputs.

  • Re:Ratings (Score:5, Interesting)

    by h4rr4r ( 612664 ) on Wednesday June 06, 2012 @05:23PM (#40237419)

    He means by professional reviewers, which just don't like these kinds of games.

    I bought Fight for the PS3 move and it is a great game that got terrible professional reviews. I am convinced this is because Fight is actual exercise.

  • by tacroy ( 813477 ) on Wednesday June 06, 2012 @05:23PM (#40237421)
    The games where it has supported a traditional controller are actually very engaging. I love just yelling "Tali sabotage" while aiming normally. Similar in Skyrim, dragon shouting in dragon language is pretty neat. As far as motion tracking, the Steel Battalion demo was REALLY frustrating the first time I tried it. THEN I tried playing it like i was actually there by using quick motions instead of trying to "hover over controls" and press and hold. And it just clicked. It's now one of the titles I am anticipating. It's been mostly gimmick waggle and dance so far. But the opportunity is there; heck just add head tracking to all first person shooters and you make something awesome....
  • by tacroy ( 813477 ) on Wednesday June 06, 2012 @05:56PM (#40237753)
    I'm talking more like show here []! Where it just gives it a great 3-d effect (without glasses) for the person viewing because they can "lean" and shift and the world will adjust correctly.
  • by Powercntrl ( 458442 ) on Wednesday June 06, 2012 @07:11PM (#40238591)

    I play video games specifically because I *want* to sit on my lard arse while blowing up aliens, flinging birds or jumping on turtles. Back in my day, you only got up in front of the TV and flailed around madly if you were a sore losing spazz. Yes, I just played the grumpy old gamer card.

    Rot in hell Kinect, Dance Dance Revolution, Wii Sports and any other video game concept that dares pollute my holy pastime with elements of "gym class"!

  • Re:Yes (Score:5, Interesting)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <bassbeast1968 AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday June 06, 2012 @07:24PM (#40238665) Journal

    First of all, you might as well drop the sports games as I know sports nuts and they wouldn't give a shit if you put out the same game every year just as long as you have the updated rosters. hell i know one with a standing order at gamestop, they charge his CC and have the latest Madden and MLB games delivered to his door on release day, he never even bothers with reviews because ALL he cares about are the rosters.

    The same could probably said for the Call of Honor: Gears of Killzone as again that is a niche that doesn't care about anything but the latest MP maps, again you can just crank out the same product as long as it has new MP maps they'd be just as happy. try logging into any of the older versions when a new one comes out and they quickly become ghost towns, its strictly about new MP maps.

    The thing you have to give valve credit for is they are one of the few developers where their games actually have legs. Just for shits and giggles i logged into HL 1 DM and was dodging rockets in a fully loaded server in seconds, whereas I did the same thing with Bioshock II which isn't even half as old and gave up after 20 minutes because there were only 2 people in the entire game.

    So to me a lot of that list is like fast food, sure it sells but how many will even remember it in a year? off that list i'd say Skyrim, Batman aaaand...that's about it. Ubisoft has gotten so nasty with the DRM that after the buzz wears off they have a hard time selling them while the dancing games, at least from what I've seen, are only played until the next new thing comes out. i have to wonder if like the music games that it won't be a fad that suddenly dies hard. Valve can sell there games year after year because they have real legs so I have to wonder who makes more money overall. Personally I'd love to see the figures on how many copies of HL1 and 2 they have sold since release, i bet the money they are getting on them even now is just crazy for older games.

    As far as Kinect goes I don't own an X360 so i can't say for sure but the one thing i hear4 reviewers bitching about over and over is how inconsistent it is, that one time a move works perfectly and the next time the same move fails horribly. For an example of what i'm talking about check out [] these reviews [] from Angry Joe where it pretty much comes down to Kinect problems ruining the games. Personally other than the dancing games i really don't see what the problem with controllers was that the Kinect was supposed to solve, other than "We need something like the Wii!" which is ironic because most folks i know with a Wii break it out a couple of times a year when a big Nintendo release hits and then back into the closet it goes.

"I prefer the blunted cudgels of the followers of the Serpent God." -- Sean Doran the Younger