Kinect Sports Rivals

Kinect Sports Rivals Features for Xbox One

On: Xbox One
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5Out of 10
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xbox one 11 -

"Delivering more choices" was how Microsoft chose to announce that it was offering a Kinect-less Xbox One, but let's call it what it actually is: a climbdown of Everest proportions, an aborted invasion of the front room by a motion control system too far. No-one really wanted it, bar Microsoft itself. Finally, even it saw what a mistake this all was.

The removal of the hardware – maligned since birth, underpowered and overhyped – is a potentially positive (in a business sense), if embarrassing move for the Redmond firm. After all the talk of Kinect being intrinsic to the system, of Major Nelson telling Redditors that Kinect is "100%" in the firm's plans, many are going to feel let down by the latest in a long line of U-turns. It's easy to handwave that away as being the price of early adoption, but people trusted Microsoft and it went back on its word, no matter how beneficial it may turn out be in the future.

(Of course, some will have had the thing unplugged since day one. They're probably now sitting around, nodding sagely as they bellow into Twitter how wise they are. And why not?)

So what now for motion gaming? It could be argued that if Microsoft couldn't get it to work then no-one can. At the same time, it wasn't just a question of Microsoft getting it 'to work', it was convincing players and developers to spend their time and money investing in it. It failed, and probably marks the end of large-scale, integral motion control setups, at least in this form. Microsoft's grand experiment has been exposed as folly, much like the rest of its plans for Xbox One, a machine of huge ambition but probably a few generations too soon, with regard to both tech and consumer attitude.

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At E3 last year, Simon Miller and I sat in the Galen centre as Don Mattrick and assorted other Microsoft executives told us their version of the future. When the launch price of the machine was announced there was an actual, audible gasp. A few hours later, at Sony's conference, I sat in the audience as Jack Tretton struggled to contain a grin wider than the Atlantic Ocean. In an industry dominated by comparisons to war, Sony had won the first battle. Concerningly for the house that Bill built, Sony hadn't struck this first blow thanks only to its own solid planning, but also because of Microsoft's own colossal blunder. Kinect wasn't a USP. It was a burden.

It's a mistake that may have repercussions for longer than some think. Nearly a year on, just getting rid of the physical need for the peripheral isn't enough: the interface needs to change. Relationships with some devs will need to be patched up. And dropping the price to £349 still doesn't seem like the right figure, especially given the bundle deals that have been offered recently. After a year and a half of disappointment and derision, the firm needs to have the E3 of its life.

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4 Comments

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Curt580's Avatar

Curt580

Called this when it was first announced, inevitable
Posted 21:27 on 13 May 2014
watur123's Avatar

watur123

The thing is that PS4 cost £350 (So it's the same price) but it has better hardware and PS+ is the generally better deal than the monthly subscription thing that MS is doing. I guess it's all the way down to whether people REALLY want those MS exclusives.
Posted 18:29 on 13 May 2014
rico_rico's Avatar

rico_rico

if they release kinect less. xbox one will be even better on par with ps4 MS clearly doesnt have future plans for xbox one
its like every day some big head at ms sleep and have a dream the next day the come and say i have a dream lets remove kinect and we will have better sale
and the price is hilarious £349 should be more like £300- £315 range
Posted 18:05 on 13 May 2014
Neon-Soldier32's Avatar

Neon-Soldier32

I think that Kinect seems very 2006-y in that, if it came out them it would have been cool and people would have liked it, because it seemed like an interesting technology which hasn't been done before. Fast forward to know and VR is in that space. VR is exciting and has legs (mainly due to Facebook's purchase) and so will be around for some time. Also, VR has real world applications, such as research on how vision and visual perception works and so isn't restricted to the games sector.

Compare this to what Kinect could do and you're limited to a mexican wave simulator in an attempt to turn up the volume on your TV. It's like MS watched Iron Man and thought that what they would produce would be like JARVIS, but it turned out to be more Jar Jar Binks.

MS are still being greedy with the pricing of the Xbox One, too. The original Kinect was around £120 when released and so only dropping the Xbone without Kinect's price by a meagre £80 is foolish. If MS had of dropped it £100, to £330 then they could market it as being the cheaper console, but alas, another trick missed.
Posted 17:53 on 13 May 2014

Game Stats

Release Date: 11/04/2014
Developer: Rare
Publisher: Microsoft
Genre: Sports
Rating: PEGI 12+
Site Rank: 2,867 1111
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