Tuesday, November 9, 2010

You Are The Waggle

I have a confession to make: I have a pre-order in for Kinect. I feel kind of dirty admitting it. My attitude towards the Wii is still largely one of scorn, yet I'm buying Microsoft's extremely casual gamer focused motion sensing controller, which, judging from early reports, is almost as much of an affront to traditional gamers as was initially feared.

The thing is, I don't for a moment think that Kinect is the way of the future in the way you would have had to to fully embrace the Wii. Kinect is an add-on to a console that I'm already fairly heavily invested in, but not an integral part of it and I'm not worried that designers are going to try and shoehorn in motion controls to games that don't need them.

So why did I decide to purchase it then? The main reason is curiousity as to how the system works, to see if, despite the apparent limitations, the system is as clever as Microsoft says it is. Additionally, buying Kinect in a bundle with a new Xbox S console means it costs less than R1000, whereas retailers want nearly R2000 for the unit by itself, and seeing as I had planned to buy a new S console anyway, now seemed like the best time to do it. It's an experiment, then. It might be a waste of money, but probably no worse than my continued tendency to buy games even though I'm really not finding the time to play them.

There are some Kinect titles aimed at the so-called "core" market being developed, notably Q Entertainment's spiritual successor to Rez, Child of Eden, and at a recent trade show Microsoft also unveiled several titles in development by various Japanese developers, some of which sound pretty interesting. I'm not assuming they're going to work that well, I'm not sure the system is accurate enough to work with games which require any real degree of precision, but maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised. The cost is sunk already, either way.

Kinect is released in South Africa on the 10th of November, which is tomorrow.