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Has Kinect Already Failed?

Kinect is releasing in the next few months and while I’m an “Xbox Guy,” this doesn’t mean that I’m necessarily excited for it. I know I’m not the only one not excited for it, but I definitely see potential, though the potential seems to fade after every game announcement I see.

Once we all heard about “Project Natal” around a year ago, I was intrigued, though far from blown away. I thought Milo looked extremely uninteresting and Burnout looked like the controls weren’t even half done but the tech itself was very intriguing. A motion camera that senses your every move, and then filters that through to your Xbox 360. The possibilities were endless.


When the name and launch titles were announced, I was about as depressed as a child that drops his ice cream cone. I knew immediately, even by just the launch titles, that it wasn’t for us, the “hardcore gamers.” It was all clearly to try and hook the casual market.

Hidden throughout the many poor sounding launch titles, such as Joy Ride, Kinect Adventures, and no one can forget Kinectimals, was one title that intrigued me quite a bit, Dance Central. Dance Central is made by Harmonix (Rock Band guys) so I knew that they were doing the right thing in straying away from their original “Rock Band” games to make another music game, this time with a nice gimmick that looked like it could actually wok. The no controller gimmick given by Kinect is such a perfect fit for a game such as Dance Central, combine that with the already impressive looking soundtrack and you’ve got the only Kinect title I look forward to someday picking up.

In my mind, I cannot quit thinking the annoying internet phrase “you’re doing it wrong” every time Microsoft announces a Kinect game. Then once you actually see gameplay, it looks like a person sporadically flailing his/her arms around, having no idea what is actually happening on screen. Take for example, one of the newest Kinect titles announced, Fighters Uncaged. If you actually watch a man play it, it looks atrocious. Who in their right mind would even want to play that for more than 20 minutes?


While Microsoft doesn’t want to hear it, the right thing to do is not put so much focus on it. Make it cheaper than 150 dollars, don’t throw Kinectimals in our face, and try to convince other developers that it’s a decent platform to develop for. There’s really no incentive for other developers not working for Microsoft to make a game on Kinect as it will probably be met with people bashing it profusely, and poor sales.  The most interesting thing about Kinect (apart from Dance Central) is the menu navigation which I’ve heard from more than a few people isn’t all that great right now, around a month and a half from launch.

At this point, Kinect’s potential is near non-existent. They’ve thrown so much money into this machine that they have to put it out at 150 dollars and they can’t just delay the system back into 2011 to try and get better software support. The sad fact is we’re going to dealing with those damn Kinectimals for a while to come.

Note: I’ve yet to play the Kinect, this is all based purely off of videos I’ve seen and things I’ve read.


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