Capcom: new tech is a stop-gap to next-gen consoles
Move, Kinect, 3D all filling time before "clash of the titans" in two years time, says COO Reeves
New console technology in the form of Move, Kinect and home 3D are all just stop-gaps on the road to the next-generation of home consoles, which could arrive within two to three years, according to Capcom's David Reeves.
Sony has always championed a ten year plan for the PlayStation 3, and Microsoft said last week it sees another five years of life in the Xbox 360, but Reeves, who spent 14 years at Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, believes new hardware will arrive sooner – although the publisher is happily jumping in and exploring possible new markets on the current-gen machines.
"Capcom is embracing it, we're working with Microsoft and with Sony on both sides and trying to match up the IPs we have with what the first-parties want," said Reeves of motion controllers Kinect and Move. "It's not a forced fit. In some ways it's quite a natural way of progressing."
"Capcom is definitely going to embrace it and just as the first-parties are doing, we see it as another blip before we come into the next cycle. 3D gaming is the same. Anything they can add to revive and pique interest in the games until we have another clash of the titans in two years time."
Although insisting his years of work at Sony haven't given him any inside information on new hardware, he pointed to "two to three years" before successors to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 arrive on store shelves.
"All the first-parties have got to be working on something," he added. "The tricky thing is when do you put a stake in the ground on technology? That's the problem. You can be waiting a few extra months to implement something, but you've got to set a date to go with a certain chip at a certain point otherwise you're going to miss the key milestones."
In the meantime, Microsoft in particular is right to chase the family gaming market with Kinect, said Reeves, as social experiences have been the most biggest growth area this generation, while hardcore games have remained lucrative for the right brands.
"If you look at the industry over the past five years and ask yourself where has the money been made, it's been made on Wii Fit, Brain Training, SingStar, even Guitar Hero. And then on the other side you've got the Activision and EA hardcore titles. They're in a box. Publishers don't want to give up their core values but they need to reach out to this wider market."
To achieve success on Move and Kinect, publishers need to create brand new games for the systems, rather than retrofit existing titles to take advantage of motion control, he added.
"It's the ones that are built from the bottom up – purpose built for Kinect and Move – that are going to be successful."
The full interview with David Reeves, where he discusses Capcom's slow adoption of the digital business, the evolution of 3D and more, can be read here.