When Microsoft showed off Kinect at E3 this year, a lot of people were disappointed with the games demonstrated. They were all aimed at the casual gaming market and though plenty of casual gamers own Wiis, most Xbox 360 owners probably don't consider themselves part of that market.
Well, Microsoft hasn't forgotten about the more dedicated gamers, but as far as Kinect is concerned, they are focusing on the casual market for now. Chris Lewis, VP of Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft, this week told GamesIndustry.biz that we can look forward to hybrid games that complement what might ostensibly be a controller-based experience with gestures, voice and physical movement. However, though Lewis said that this will happen over the next 12 to 18 months, he said that over the launch phase and through Christmas, the Kinect games will be very "much pure Kinect for 360 experiences that will appeal to the broad young/older/female/family audiences."
When GamesIndustry wondered aloud if that would be enough on its own to get people to part with the cash, Lewis said, "We're confident it will – early signs are very positive."
Another sore spot for Xbox 360 owners is the price. A lot of gamers think Kinect is a little bit pricey. When asked why Kinect costs what it does, Lewis said Microsoft researches these things across wide groups of target customers and that it's confident – particularly because it comes with Kinect Adventures, which has 20 different levels – that it's good value.
Do you think Kinect is good value? Let us know in the comments below.
Read the full interview here.
I think it will be a while yet before I own an xbox.
Owners of the Wii are casual gamers and potential casual gamers likely buy a Wii as there are no hardcore games.
Owners of the Xbox 360 like to think of themselves as hardcore games and potential hardcore gamers are likely to buy an Xbox 360 because it has hardcore games.
So, what about those who dont have either console yet or are upgrading?
Millions of consumers who are either casual or hardcore, so why split the market in half and lose all the customer?
The new Xbox 360S and the Kinect will attract previous Wii owners looking for a casula game but on a more powerful system
It will attract previous Xbox 360 owners as it can still play their existing hardcore games and is more reliable (cooler).
But more importantly it will attract those who have never owned a console before who wanted both casual and hardcore but not have to buy 2 separate consoles. There are people out there who want to play GoW2 for themselves and when their kids play on it switch over to Monkey Tennis.
The $300 bundle is a very good deal and will attract a lot of new family-conscious consumers. If the family already has a 360 then for $150 they ostensibly get a new video game system with games that are wildly different than what's been available on Xbox 360.
MS wants to expand the Xbox's appeal beyond 18-35 year old males that have usurped the platform. They've wanted to expand the Xbox audience for a long time, but this looks like the first time it's actually going to work. Fitness games will get women playing Xbox. Dance games will get girls. Pet sims and kart racers will get kids. Sports games and party games will get families. Xbox will no longer just be a brand associated with violent shooters and fantasy games for immature boys.
18-35 year old males are still going to buy Halo, CoD, and Gears. Microsoft has that demographic locked up there is no point in targeting Kinect at that audience.
I'd say the biggest flaw in Microsoft's strategy is the design of the Xbox 360. They've actually made the Xbox 360 less appealing to girls/mothers/grandparents than it was before. Kinect hardware could have been a little more candy apple friendly as well.
I also have a Wii with 4 sets of controllers and spent way too many nights in the back yard with my home made projection screen playing golf and other games. Not to mention the money I've spent on gaming PC's over the years.
But, there's no way in he11 that I'm going to spend $150.00 on Kinect. Sorry MS. Make it $99.00 and I'll get one as soon as they're released.
And doesn't anyone else think that 12-18 month timeline they mention might also coincide with the next generation console? Why not 3-6 months for "hard core" games? 12-18 months is past the "oh, I gotta have that thing" time.
Microsoft will most likely lower the price once the initial demand is gone. As for the device itself, it represents another type of interaction with a console that has been fairly good to me since its launch.
I will most likely purchase a complete bundle version of this set when it comes out. I like the way the new 360 looks.