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Is Microsoft's Kinect a Gaming Failure?

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the wave-your-hands-in-the-air-like-you-just-don't-care dept.

Input Devices 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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130 comments

Kinect is a piece of shit... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237265)

...compared to what Leap is doing. And there's is cross platform to boot.

Re:Kinect is a piece of shit... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40239013)

Foul-mouthed, unpleasant, a blowhard, and lacking even the most basic command of the English language.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, we have a gamer.

Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237279)

The only thing that E3 has shown is is that a majority of game large game houses have no idea what they're doing, what their audience wants, or what to do in the future.

I now know why Gabe Newel always has that smile on his face.

Next question please.

Re:Yes (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237437)

I love Valve, but just because the biggest publishers don't make games you want doesn't mean they don't make games that most people want. Here's the list of the 10 best selling games in the US for 2011:
1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (360, PS3, Wii, PC) - Activision
2. Just Dance 3 (Wii, 360, PS3) - Ubisoft
3. Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (360, PS3, PC) - Bethesda
4. Battlefield 3 (360, PS3, PC) - EA
5. Madden NFL 12 (360, PS3, Wii, PSP, PS2) - EA
6. Call of Duty: Black Ops (360, PS3, Wii, NDS, PC) - Activision
7. Batman: Arkham City (360, PS3, PC) - Warner Brothers
8. Gears of War 3 (360) - Microsoft
9. Just Dance 2 (Wii) - Ubisoft
10. Assassin's Creed: Revelations (360, PS3, PC) - Ubisoft

Basically, all the publishers everyone hates and swears they'll never buy from again dominate the list. I hate a lot of them too (although the only one I won't buy from anymore is Ubisoft), but I don't pretend that my views are the norm. The fact is EA, Activision and Ubisoft basically print money, whether I like their games or not I have to admit they're doing something right.

Re:Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237459)

and to me, I dont give a flying fuck about any of those, give me zelda and diablo 3

Re:Yes (2)

r1348 (2567295) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237813)

Valve never publishes sales numbers, and as it's not a publicly traded company, it doesn't have to.
I have no idea whether Portal 2 should or shouldn't be in that list, but the lack of information about a major publisher like Valve automatically makes any statistic bogus.

Re:Yes (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238643)

they don't publish sales numbers but Gabe Newell came out and said"Newell stated that Portal 2 had shipped more than 4 million units, with the personal computer versions outselling the console versions; overall, both Portal and Portal 2 had shipped more than 8 million units. " so that info is avalible.

Re:Yes (5, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238137)

This is the same nonsense that goes on in every media industry. There are artists that produce what's really changing the industry, that are creating the real art.... Then there are giant media houses that do nothing more than buy up the content those artists made, promote and capitalize on it. Music is a perfect example. Really great bands often don't make much money... soon after they make their debuet, revolutionary album, all of the hack bands that have their music written for them are doing the same thing, but have huge publishers behind them paying radio stations to play their songs and getting them spots on Jay Lenno.

Did you notice that every single title in that list is a sequel? And none of them are even based on a game that wasn't half assed copy of something some smaller studio designed first. The difference is marketing dollars.

Re:Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40239343)

They're still fun games and they'd qualify as art under most definitions. They're doing something right.

Re:Yes (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238143)

Missing the point here. I'm speaking of the growing disillusion between large dev houses and the gaming public. Most of E3 was about shit that has almost nothing in common with the games on that list. It's not about whats happening now, or in the past. It's what's happening in the future.

Look at Japan to see the future. What's coming out of Japan? Nothing. Nothing at all. Once the undisputed game dev empire and they are nowhere on your list. What's happening at EA now is what alredy happened at Capcom. Big dev houses buy up the small ones, and burn them.

Eventually people will get bored of muddy FPS and action 3D platform games. What E3 showed us is that the big players have no plans for what's next. None at all.

Gabe knows. Apple knows. Indy devs know. - I'll be proven right in 5-6 years.

Re:Yes (1)

PeterKraus (1244558) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241899)

And for the 3-4 upcoming years, there's always Starcraft 2 to play. Heart of the Swarm might get released by then! :P

Re:Yes (4, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238665)

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 [angryjoeshow.com] these reviews [angryjoeshow.com] 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.

Re:Yes (2)

zlives (2009072) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237595)

kickstarter has been getting my funds lately, but only for DRM free games.
I guess that makes me a pirate... that gives money away?

Re:Yes (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237761)

kickstarter has been getting my funds lately, but only for DRM free games.
I guess that makes me a pirate... that gives money away?

hi troll !

Needs polish... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237281)

Maybe Microsoft or someone else can polish it to the point where it's more of a big deal. The fact that there are lengthy warnings and slow UI response times when using the Kinect is enough for me not to want to turn it on regularly.

Re:Needs polish... (1)

ArhcAngel (247594) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237671)

You mean kinda like what LEAP [leapmotion.com] is showing off?

Re:Needs polish... (2)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239445)

You mean kinda like what LEAP [leapmotion.com] is showing off?

Leap is only for your hands, and only covers 8 cubic feet. Not nearly the same thing as kinect, so referring to it as a more polished version of kinect seems a bit silly to me.

Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237283)

But it makes an awesome sensor for robotics, so I'm okay with that.

Re:Yes (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241871)

Yep. Everybody I know who owns a Kinect is using it as a 3D scanner (or something similar).

Nobody plays games with them.

Microsoft should have listened to me (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237287)

The future is but one word: dildonics. Get in on the ground floor this time, MS!

Re:Microsoft should have listened to me (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237715)

Dildonics is so last century! Teledildonics, now that is where it's at!

Re:Microsoft should have listened to me (2)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237981)

Dildonics is so last century! Teledildonics, now that is where it's at!

Its actually the truth. The PS2 had a Trance Vibrator released for REZ.

Well, that and... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237321)

wiggling around in front of your TV is pretty gay.

My Wii has the same problem (2, Interesting)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#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:My Wii has the same problem (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237503)

Forcing developers, to force users to navigate UI with Kinect is the primary issue for me.

As a developers on one of the initial Kinect titles, and as a consumer playing other games... this was and is one of the biggest barriers to entry to Kinect's success.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (0)

BenoitRen (998927) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237545)

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.

3 hours?! If you had that much difficulty with using the Wiimote's pointer (not motion) functionality, you'd likely not be much better with a GameCube controller. The boss hit hard, but it was pretty easy to hit the glowing orbs.

There was nothing wrong with the controls, in my opinion. But there was something wrong with the rest of the game. The excellence of the original Metroid Prime was likely a happy accident.

Considering your entire comment it's more likely that you have a problem pointing at things because it really isn't a pain in the ass.

Sonic Adventure 5(?)

What's wrong with using the actual name of the game?

Re:My Wii has the same problem (2)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237591)

I don't remember the actual name of the game. And I didn't have any problem beating Metroid Prime 1 and 2. The Wiimote has a problem of non-responsiveness where the player's inputs don't register.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (1)

arose (644256) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238157)

I've played both the GameCube version of Metroid Prime 1 and the Metroid Prime Trilogy with enough time in between to restart the Wii. The Trilogy has silky smooth pointing, the GC version had jerky pointing that just about required aim correction. Not sure if you were using the standard configuration that makes it a PITA to look around or if you have glare issues (I've had that happen before, the calibration was showing up dots all over the place), but the Wii Metroid controls should make anyone who has played any PC shooter since Quake feel right at home.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (2)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238233)

You don't "point" in the GC version. You press the "target lock" button and it automatically jumps to the spot you're supposed to shoot at. Also Metroid Prime isn't meant to be a shooter..... like the original game it's meant to be a hide-and-seek game (trying to find the parts the programmer hid). In fact all of the game can be played without shooting anything, except the end-of-level bosses.

>>>Not sure if you were using the standard configuration that makes it a PITA to look around
Always.
I don't ever bother with customization on my devices, because it I jump to a different Wii or X360 or PC (like work) then it will be confusing. I just use the default settings.
Oh and calibration seems okay. Dark room.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (1)

arose (644256) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238625)

Doesn't really matter if it's primary a shooter or not, there is an FPS element (however small or big) and it was immensely improved (for me at least) with the addition of a straightforward pointing/looking scheme. I'm sure that the GC plays fine once you get used to the controls, but I wasn't in a country with Nintendo presence in the GameCube era. I picked it up used but hadn't played much when I rented MP3 and was blown away by how much more enjoyable it was just due to the controls. Promptly picked up one of the last copies of the Trilogy in town and that was that for playing it with a GC controller.

Just pick advanced controls (or whatever the name is), it should take care of everything you need. In fact, it might be one of the things it asks you before you start a game.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40239657)

You don't "point" in the GC version. You press the "target lock" button and it automatically jumps to the spot you're supposed to shoot at.

I think arose knows that, considering they said "the GC version had jerky pointing that just about required aim correction." Without that "aim correction" (aka, target lock), it was difficult as hell to point at the correct object.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (1)

medv4380 (1604309) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237585)

I can agree. I think the Pro controller is to address your concern with being forced to use the wavy sticks. I also think the duel screen pad will help reduce the need to reconfigure my living room to use the Wii Fit or Balance Board. I'm not sure if Kinect can take the same advantage of Smart Glass.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (2)

Riddler Sensei (979333) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237631)

Indeed, I remember playing SSBB with a friend when it first came out and we would round robin using the Gamecube controller we had on hand. Whoever was using the Gamecube controller would win and whoever was using the Wiimote lost. SSBB doesn't use the motion controls but even just using the Wiimote as a regular controller was wonky at best. The sideways NES style just didn't work as well.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (2)

Kozar_The_Malignant (738483) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237787)

>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.

The problem with Metroid Wii is not the controller. The problem is your failure to locate the One Fucking Pixel that achieves victory or even allows movement in some cases.

Re:My Wii has the same problem (5, Informative)

scot4875 (542869) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238493)

You're thinking of Other M, Not Metroid Prime 3.

--Jeremy

Re:My Wii has the same problem (1)

scot4875 (542869) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238467)

I wasted 3 hours trying to beat the *first* boss in Metroid Prime 3.

What, the encounter falling down the shaft with Ridley? That first fight with one of the other mercs? Or the first boss in one of the seeds?

In any case, 3 hours? Seriously? The *only* difference between the MP1/2 and MP3 controls (that you would have access to at that point in the game) was that you have direct control over the targeting reticle.

--Jeremy

Re:My Wii has the same problem (1)

the_arrow (171557) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241981)

The Wii's motion control is okay for simple games like tennis or bowling, but a PITA for complex games.

When I played Zelda: Skyward Sword I was amazed how well the motion control worked, and I wouldn't exactly call a Zelda game "simple".

Audio Controls (4, Insightful)

rokstar (865523) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237343)

While I agree that the motion controller features could be considered a failure for gaming purposes, its voice control capabilities are its most enduring feature to me. Being able to control the various video streaming services by talking to the TV still feels like we are living in the future.

Re:Audio Controls (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237439)

You talk to your TV?

Re:Audio Controls (3, Funny)

ganjadude (952775) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237467)

but does it talk back? that is the question

Re:Audio Controls (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239351)

No, but it listens very attentively. I believe that's where the therapeutic effect lies.

Re:Audio Controls (1)

NoZart (961808) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237485)

Sometimes i swear at it.

Re:Audio Controls (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238257)

Sure, I insult the insensitive clods who speak on it daily.

Re:Audio Controls (5, Insightful)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237475)

Depends on the game I think... Kinect is pretty much the ultimate party game controller. During parties I always have my xbox running, and people just jump in and out of the game as they feel like it. Much better than wii and ps3 where there's passing around controllers... since they tend to get misplaced between sessions and as drunkenness ensues... which reminds me of the best feature of the kinect: taking pictures of drunk people playing games and uploading them automatically to facebook. Amazing.

But that has nothing to do with Kinect! (2)

brunes69 (86786) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238449)

The stupid thing though is that Kinect voice controls have NOTHING AT ALL to do with the Kinect hardware. All that analysis is done on the Xbox itself. Sure it is using Kinect code, but the code runs on the CONSOLE, it is not run on the Kinect hardware like the 3D processing.

Which means that all of these games that have voice control could EASILY have had this enabled using the headset, if Microsoft wanted to allow that. But they'd much rather push more stupid Kinect sales.

Re:But that has nothing to do with Kinect! (2)

rokstar (865523) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238709)

My understanding is that just like the voice processing is done on the Kinect, the 3d processing is as well. There was an article on joystiq many moons ago about this. From wikipedia...

Although the sensor unit was originally planned to contain a microprocessor that would perform operations such as the system's skeletal mapping, it was revealed in January 2010 that the sensor would no longer feature a dedicated processor. Instead, processing would be handled by one of the processor cores of the Xbox 360's Xenon CPU.[63] According to Alex Kipman, the Kinect system consumes about 10-15% of the Xbox 360's computing resources.[64]

Also the kinect has an array of microphones, not just one. Sure you could make a headset to do this but you couldn't use any old headset.

Re:But that has nothing to do with Kinect! (1)

rokstar (865523) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238719)

Sorry that should be:

My understanding is that just like the voice processing is done on the xbox, the 3d processing is as well

Re:But that has nothing to do with Kinect! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40239129)

the voice processing is done on the Kinect, the 3d processing is as well.

the sensor would no longer feature a dedicated processor. Instead, processing would be handled by one of the processor cores of the Xbox 360's Xenon CPU.

Your citation contradicts your statement.

Re:Audio Controls (1)

CronoCloud (590650) | more than 2 years ago | (#40240637)

its voice control capabilities are its most enduring feature to me. Being able to control the various video streaming services by talking to the TV still feels like we are living in the future.

Considering "Hey You Pikachu", though flawed was an N64 game and there were PS2 games with voice recognition I'm surprised Nintendo and Sony haven't done more with voice control./recognition. Never had a Dreamcast but there was Seaman on that.

Re:Audio Controls (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 2 years ago | (#40240867)

I guess, they have discovered that it's a bad idea and abandoned it.

Voice commands SUCK ASS as an input for a game.

leading title (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237355)

Don't you love titles that color the audience towards a conclusion before they read the article?

Ratings (5, Insightful)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237397)

Scroll through the ratings on Kinect-required titles, and the percentages are abysmal.

Scroll through? Scroll where? Let's head over to amazon then and see how they're doing:

  • Kinect Sports - 4.5 stars 400 reviews
  • Kinect Sports 2 - 4.0 stars 204 reviews
  • Kinect Star Wars - 3.5 stars 70 reviews
  • Kinect Disneyland Adventures - 3.5 stars 154 reviews
  • Just Dance 3 - 4.5 stars 194 reviews
  • Dance Central - 4.5 stars 500 reviews
  • Your Shape Fitness Evolved 2012 - 4.5 stars 201 reviews
  • Kinectimals - 4.5 stars 159 reviews

Do I need to keep scrolling? I don't see many games with reviews under 3 stars. Where are these supposed abysmal ratings?

Re:Ratings (5, Interesting)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#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.

Re:Ratings (2)

Dorkmaster Flek (1013045) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237589)

Maybe, but Dance Central is easily the best thing on Kinect and got great professional reviews. Just Dance isn't half bad either, but inferior to Harmonix's offering IMO. I think it's a little unfair to say such reviewers just don't like these kinds of games. They may just not be very good.

Re:Ratings (2)

bryan1945 (301828) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237767)

I've given up on "professional" reviews. There always seems to be a bias, an agenda, or just paying back their advertisers. I follow a few people on YouTube who have done reviews that have mostly lined up with my views of games. And this extends beyond just the motion games.

Re:Ratings (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238283)

Their bias is to cater to the hardcore gaming audience, which fanatically hate change in general. Remember when the DS came out? People were ridiculing the touch-screen, the dual-screens and the microphone (yeah, remember the microphone?). Fast-forward almost a decade and no one bats an eye at it.

Re:Ratings (1)

ganjadude (952775) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237483)

the most reviews are 500.... 500 for a console game, I didnt look but how many reviews are there for e "regular" top selling games?

Re:Ratings (0)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237497)

That's pretty bad for amazon reviews (which tend to be inflated). Usually anything below 4.5 isn't worth buying.

Re:Ratings (2)

donaggie03 (769758) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238323)

I've found the opposite to be true, at least for the things I buy on amazon. I've noticed people like to give poor ratings to things when they are mad at the supplier for a lenthy shipment and other things that don't actually have anything to do with the product.

Re:Ratings (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40241225)

Can you point us to a review that is not inflated? lol..

Re:Ratings (1)

arose (644256) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238193)

Head over to Amazon and look at the reviews for any kind of mainstream media...

Amazon supress sometimes negative review (1)

aepervius (535155) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241983)

Try metacritic (rounded to the next 5%) :
Kinect Sports 75% metacritic (90% amazon)
Kinect sport 2 65% (amazon 80%) Kinect star wars 35% user score (55% professional) amazon 70%.
Kinect disneyland 75% (amazon 70%).

I did not bother looking up the rest, but from the user score in my experience is that those are average or good game, but not *special* or incredible. I think the GP exagerated with his abysmal precentage, but they cetrainly are not excellent percentage.

Cloud compatible? (1)

pegasustonans (589396) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237399)

Can I use Metro in the Cloud with SmartGlass, or will I need a wizard to help me?

Re:Cloud compatible? (2)

ganjadude (952775) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237819)

no, you just need clippy

Re:Cloud compatible? (1)

pegasustonans (589396) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238017)

no, you just need clippy

If I use a wizard to find Clippy, will Bob take me to the SmartGlass Metro Cloud?

Or is that only if I'm using Windows Millenium?

Re:Cloud compatible? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239371)

You can do anything in the cloud. Anything at all!

Welcome to the cloud.

It's very good when it augments controllers... (5, Interesting)

tacroy (813477) | more than 2 years ago | (#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....

Re:It's very good when it augments controllers... (2)

NoZart (961808) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237515)

I dont like the idea of head tracking - the head and the screen are sort of a fixed construct. Using headtracking would just make you roll your eyes ALOT.

Re:It's very good when it augments controllers... (4, Interesting)

tacroy (813477) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237753)

I'm talking more like show here http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Jd3-eiid-Uw# [youtube.com] ! 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.

Re:It's very good when it augments controllers... (1)

citizenr (871508) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239759)

You love the fact you spend $200 for Xbox MICROPHONE? thats great man.

Nice fit for casual games. (2)

Pathwalker (103) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237471)

I picked up a 360 with Kinect for my parents a couple of weeks ago. Controllers are becoming more difficult for them to use; and I figured controlling a game with whole body movements would work better for them.

So far they've really enjoyed it; it seems to be a good fit for the same casual gamers who have been using a Wii, but want games that are a bit more complex.

Yes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237495)

Yes.

A Failure? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237507)

Over 1 million units sold, setting world records, and people have the audacity to call it a failure?

Im not saying that its perfect, but the numbers do not lie...

Re:A Failure? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238281)

How many of those 1 million units were used to actually play games though? Of all the people I know with a kinect (several), none of them even own xboxes. They use it with their PC to make motion controlled apps (which also fail, as it requires a kinect and not enough people have a kinect).

Yes. And so is Microsoft. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237653)

An abject failure, to be exact.

In other news: Couch potatoes are lazy SoB's! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237655)

People don't want exercise while trying to relax playing a game. Moving anything more than your fingers is too much work.

Text to Speech (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40237817)

Motion Control in general is a very limited field, and for the Kinect, the dance games my wife actually likes sold poorly in north america, so she can't get any of the DLC.

The Kinect for navigation is somewhat more useful, but the only time it really comes to the forefront is searching, (despite the fact I absolutely hate Bing), saving you from a lot of typing. Far from the future of video gaming, (not that it ever was; why I would want to play a video game where I'm limited to moving around as my fat self is quite beyond me), it is pretty much an over-powered text-to-speech system, (that gets more typos then I do naturally, I might add).

Sure, text-to-speech has been ridiculously expensive in the past, so it's certainly a good thing, but the only electronics not using the Kinect are video games, so as a Video Game Peripheral, it's a complete and utter failure. It does seem to have a future in everything else, though.

Motion must be fun (4, Insightful)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237857)

Microsoft promoted the Kinect as intuitive. But being intuitive is not enough for motion controls. The motion itself must be fun to do. Thus your dance games are very popular because dancing is fun. Aerobics is fun for some people and painfull for others. Running in place is not very fun. The Kinect is succesfull if all it does is replace dance pads. That is a big enough market for gaming companies to put out games.

It's not the Knnect sensor..... (0)

bobbied (2522392) | more than 2 years ago | (#40237899)

The Knnect sensor is quite a nice feature if you ask me but the *real* problem is with the whole game console industry and not with the various user interfaces. The game console industry is being squeezed out of the market by smartphones and tablets with touch screens. Yea, the user interface on these devices really sucks for classic game design, but they are extremely portable, have a very active application development communities and hundreds of cheap applications already available.

I expect the game console industry to continue it's decline, with some possible bumps along the way if they can come up with unique games that can only work on a console.

Re:It's not the Knnect sensor..... (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238171)

I have zero desire to play on a tiny screen. If I did I would have bought a Gameboy a decade ago, but instead I prefer the full-sized games on TV just as I prefer full-sized movies on TV, not something on my little phone.

It was obviously doomed (5, Insightful)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238209)

The device made grandiose claims it couldn't possibly deliver on. Remember all that BS about it being able to recognize faces and even emotions? The thing can't even reliably tell when someone has their arms in front of them.

The average kinect game involves making some exaggerated flailing motions that map onto some canned animations. Even then it often screws up or gets confused. There's only so far you can go with that system. Sports / fitness / dance games are the main focus but there isn't much beyond that. There have been a few genuinely innovative attempts to use kinect in a novel way that have almost succeeded such as Once Upon a Monster but most games have been dire and people have gotten bored of it.

Re:It was obviously doomed (1)

Mista2 (1093071) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239573)

The other issue is consistency, sometimes you can use voice in the menus, sometimes you can't, and it seems unable to understand my kids at all, which is very frustrating for them.
And one in the games there are different ways to select menu items etc. if there was a standard API of gursturs that woul make more sense. The kinnect gets much less use than I expected by the kids.

Re:It was obviously doomed (1)

CronoCloud (590650) | more than 2 years ago | (#40240703)

and it seems unable to understand my kids at all, which is very frustrating for them.

Voice recognition seems to have issues with people with high and/or squeaky voices. My late mother, who had Rheumatoid Arthritis was simply unable to use Dragon Naturally speaking because it simply wouldn't recognize her high pitched squeaky voice, not even for the first "welcome to dragon naturally speaking...." training. It worked for me out of the box, though.

It's all at space (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238357)

The biggest problem with the Kinect is that you need a large open space to be able use it.

Directly from Microsoft's Kinect site:
Clear the space between you and the sensor. If you’re playing alone, we recommend standing six feet away from the sensor. For two players, you both should be at least eight feet away*.

For people in a condo or apartment that pretty much means cleaning out the room. Even in a house, many people I know don't have that kind of clear space in their entertainment rooms. It also means that spare room or den is out as well. The Kinect is a great concept but the reality is that does not fit the smaller spaces that people actually live in.

Add the fact that the concept of motion controlled games is still pretty new and you have good reasons why the Kinect is not the run away success that Microsoft wanted. Maybe once the developer and game makes learn to tweak the hardware it will get better. Just like all hardware, it takes a few iterations before it becomes well used.

Yep (1)

dohzer (867770) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238485)

Chuck it in the failure pile with the Jaguar, 32X, and the Wii.

Depends on the goal (3, Insightful)

cookd (72933) | more than 2 years ago | (#40238561)

Whether Kinect is a failure depends on exactly how you define success.

-- Controlling the games we're used to playing on the xbox? FAIL.
-- Getting good reviews from people who review games on our favorite gaming websites? FAIL.
-- Selling a lot of units? WIN.
-- Has some games that some consumers really like? WIN.
-- Good as an input mechanism for some interesting non-traditional uses? WIN.
-- The future of gaming? FAIL.
-- The future of computer-human interaction? PROBABLY.

As an additional note, the first version isn't terribly awesome, but inevitably it'll get better in the future.

It's a couch potato failure (4, Interesting)

Powercntrl (458442) | more than 2 years ago | (#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:It's a couch potato failure (1)

Grieviant (1598761) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239621)

Agreed. The 'get fit while you game' craze was a fad driven by marketing and the clueless mommies taken in by it. Motion control input is laughably inadequate for most game genres, and it's an annoyance even for games that are simple enough to support it.

Re:It's a couch potato failure (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239739)

You can easily "game" a Wii controller so that you can use it while sitting on your ass. Very little actual motion is required for most activities.

Plus there are buttons.

See adult try to pretend he's bowling. See kid move the wiimote in the least natural but most effective path possible.

The problem with Kinect may be that it's not simple enough and you can't be lazy with it.

I disagree. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40238729)

The Kinekt is not a gaming failure.

Kinekt Star Wars [youtube.com] is a gaming failure.

Re:I disagree. (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241821)

The Kinekt is not a gaming failure.

Kinekt Star Wars is a gaming failure.

I disagree [youtube.com] .

*Trash compactor*
*Double blaster*
*Not a scratch*
*Solo pose*

Motion Gaming a fad, more at 10 (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 2 years ago | (#40239023)

Video capture systems to interact with computers have been around since the Amiga, and they are great for some games in some situations, but on the other hand you dont want to move your furniture to jump around like a dolt for every single game, it gets tiresome, tedious, and frustrating. Yea great you have had fun with them for a little while, but where does it end up? Right next to your WII, move, eye-toy, light guns, activator and rock-n-roller. Whats your next console going to have in the box? A gamepad.

Re:Motion Gaming a fad, more at 10 (1)

DrPhero (2656749) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242383)

Calling it a video capture system is woefully inaccurate. I do agree that some Kinect games are poorly designed, and not enough resources have been put into thoughtfully getting the most out of this technology for games or other applications (i.e. after a long day at work, who really wants to swipe their whole arm across the sky repetitively to cover flow scroll through your Netflix catalog, when a sub-millimeter click of your thumb on a remote would achieve the same thing??), but that has to do with the tech being in its "mainstream infancy". Depth cameras were orders of magnitude more expensive before the Kinect. Watch this year as more tech of this sort with the Leap Motion etc, come into play. And saying it is a gaming failure sounds like counter-marketing hype after E3-- every kid under 13 I've seen loves running and jumping and controlling the Kinect. Yes there haven't been so many adult oriented kick ass games for it, and Microsoft stumbled massively when taking soooo long to release their Kinect SDK to PC developers. But just check out YouTube, there many, many are amazing hacks out there by people using the primesense drivers before MS slowly came to the party. A couple of us made a full-body realtime 3D avatar system, fully articulatable with Unity and these open source drivers very quickly. And iPisoft has their dual Kinect based motion capture suite that is cheaper than an hour in a pro mocap suite! So don't discount what the Kinect has proffered. It's not the holy grail, but its depth tech, combined with voice recognition, other wearable sensors, and maybe brain based controllers like the Emotiv, make the future look really cool. We just have to apply them correctly to the right interactions. Also, Microsoft could get off their ass and give us a 2nd generation one at a hardware cycle as fast as Apple and then they might have a chance again....

well you can blame demographics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40239401)

kinect involves you standing up, jumping etc. which means physical exercise
in a market where your average bmi is between 27-32, it is bound to fail.
on the other hand wii involves you playing with your wrists

When... (0)

jmerlin (1010641) | more than 2 years ago | (#40240207)

When will the developers at Microsoft tell their bosses "no, no we can't put Internet Explorer in that, because it fucking sucks. That's right, it sucks. Internet Explorer is FUCKING TERRIBLE." Just be sure to record it and put it up on YouTube so we can all witness such pure win.

Microsoft Kinect Spy System (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40240773)

Microsoft Kinect Spy System
Written by Alphonse

So you just got the Kinect/Xbox360 gaming system and youâ(TM)re having fun, hanging out in your underwear, plopped down in your favorite lounge chair, and playing games with your buddies. Yeah, itâ(TM)s great to have a microphone and camera in your game system so you can âoeKinectâ to your pals while you play, but did you read that Terms of Service Agreement that came with your Kinect thingy? No? Here, let me point out an important part of that service agreement.

        If you accept the agreement, you âoeexpressly authorize and consent to us accessing or disclosing information about you, including the content of your communications, in order to: (a) comply with the law or respond to lawful requests or legal process; (b) protect the rights or property of Microsoft, our partners, or our customers, including the enforcement of our agreements or policies governing your use of the Service; or (c) act on a good faith belief that such access or disclosure is necessary to protect the personal safety of Microsoft employees, customers, or the public.â

Did you catch that? Here, let me print the important part in really big letters.
âoeIf you accept the agreement, you expressly authorize and consent to us accessing or disclosing information about you, including the content of your communications⦠on a good faith belief that such access or disclosure is necessary to protect the personal safety of Microsoft employees, customers, or the public.â

OK, is that clear enough for ya? When you use the Kinect system, you agree to allow Microsoft (and any branch of law enforcement or government they care to share information with) to use your Kinect system to spy on you. Maybe run that facial recognition software to check you out, listen to your conversations, and keep track of who you are communicating with.

I know this is probably old news to some, but I thought I would mention it because it pertains to almost all of these home game systems that are interactive. You have to remember, the camera and microphone contained in your game system has the ability to be hacked by anyone the game company gives that ability to, and that includes government snoops and law enforcement agents.

Hey, itâ(TM)s MICROSOFT. What did you expect?

And the same concerns apply to all interactive game systems. Just something to think about if youâ(TM)re having a âoeNaked Wii partyâ or doing something illegal while youâ(TM)re gaming with your buddies. Or maybe you say something suspicious and it triggers the DHS software to start tracking your every word. Hey, this is not paranoia. Itâ(TM)s spelled out for you, right there in that Service Agreement. Read it! Hereâ(TM)s one more part of the agreement you should be aware of.

        âoeYou should not expect any level of privacy concerning your use of the live communication features (for example, voice chat, video and communications in live-hosted gameplay sessions) offered through the Service.â

Did you catch it that time? YOU SHOULD NOT EXPECT ANY LEVEL OF PRIVACY concerning your voice chat and video features on your Kinect box.

- http://www.unmarkedvan.com/?p=192 [unmarkedvan.com]

Ergonomics? Yup (1)

chrismcb (983081) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241299)

I've always felt the kinetic will make a great party game. It will also do great for things like exercise videos, and personal trainer type games.
But face it, if people wanted to play sports, they'd go outside and play sports. I play video games because I am not fast enough, dexterous enough, or in shape enough to stand there and participate in the game. I want to sit on the couch and play.
But its more than that. How long do you want to stand there with your arm held out doing something. Everyone talks about Minority Report were Cruise was waving his hands around in the air. That'll work for all of about 15 seconds. A keyboard words because my arms rest on my desk. The mouse works because my hand rests on the mouse and the arm on my desk. A controller works because my hands have feedback and my arms rest on my lap or couch or knees or somewhere.
I think kinetic and its ilk are here to stay. BUT it is not a controller for every type of game. party games, dance games, exercise... but everything else give me a good old fashioned controller

Re:Ergonomics? Yup (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40242421)

I'm getting we should design the world for lazy fat people.

biggest problem.. (1)

SuperDre (982372) | more than 2 years ago | (#40241617)

The biggest problem with kinect is the amount of space required to be able to use it, not many people have that much space in front of the TV.. It's great tech, especially if it's supplemented with a Move-controller..

A bit of (relevant) history (2)

MahlonS (1670762) | more than 2 years ago | (#40242763)

In 1984-85 I helped develop a 3D mouse (I called it "the bat, a mouse that flew") for use with a real 3D display we had running to explore 3D images from our real time 3D CT image scanner. The bat could control point cursors as well as line and plane cursors. Hardware limitations made it slow, but beyond that, fatigue soon set in while using the device, making it unrealistic for use in practical applications. I'm not surprised that Kinect seems to be suffering from a fate that I perceive as similar.
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