Yesterday we singled out interviews with Peter Molyneux, Mike Hayes, Sean Murray, Shuhei Yoshida and Jason Holtman as some of the most important, interesting and insightful content on GamesIndustry.biz this year, and today we're doing it all again with another five interviews that shine a light on the ever evolving games business.
Alex Kipman, Microsoft
We've interviewed a lot of senior Microsoft executives this year - Peter Molyneux, Stephen McGill, Neil Thompson, Chris Lewis - and all of them have spent a lot of time talking about one thing: Kinect. But with those guys there is always an element of marketing (even with Molyneux), so when we got the chance to interview the creator of Kinect, Alex Kipman, we jumped on it as the only real chance to look in detail behind the hype.
There was of course still a small element of BS from MS. Referring to the technology as "magical" grates and does it a disservice when you first see it in motion. This is genuinely forward-looking technology that Kipman was happy to talk about in detail - first about the changes to Kinect since it evolved from Project Natal, and tackling the lingering questions of lag.
"If you think about it, the actual human introduces, and forget about USB, the devices, anything like that, the actual human introduces lag. But differently. If you look at the physical space that you have to traverse, to move your thumb on a joypad, and you look at the physical space you have to traverse to drive a car, or punch someone, or paddle down the river - it takes you longer."
While Microsoft has been at pains to get the message across that Kinect is a controller free experience, only days before the system went on sale, Kipman let slip to GamesIndustry.biz that there are already games in development that are using a hybrid control method of motion and physical device, suggesting Microsoft is already at work on the next evolution of Kinect.
"What we haven't really talked about, but exist, are hybrid games," he said. "Games that are using the controller, which we know and love, and pieces, if not all, of the Kinect experiences to again make those experiences more immersive, more fun and more emotionally connected."