Natal renamed Kinect, first titles detailed

Mini-game compilations for the mainstream and a new Star Wars title for the core crowd lead initial software

Microsoft's motion controller has been renamed Kinect, after carrying around the Project Natal moniker for a year.

The name was leaked just hours before its official unveiling at the Galen Centre in Los Angeles, where Microsoft had hired Cirque Du Soleil to create a performance based on the technology.

A range of titles on show included Kinetic Adventures, Kinect Sports – both collections of mini-games – virtual pet-sim Kinectimals, racing game Joyride and MTV's Dance Central. There was also confirmation of Disney supporting Kinect, as well as LucasArts with a new Star Wars game.

Online rumours suggest Kinect will come in two different SKUs, with the most expensive retailing in the US at $189, a far cry from the sub-£50 price muted months ago.

No official price has been set by Microsoft as yet, nor launch date, but The Seattle Times has suggested the hardware will arrive in November.

More details on the Microsoft Kinect event have been posted in the GamesIndustry Blog.

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Latest comments (23)

John Catuira Journalist 8 years ago
Not to mention Tai Chi, yoga, a Kinect-enabled dashboard and video chat. I'd like to know more about the Kameo title that appeared near the start of the presentation.
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Matt Martin Editor, GamesIndustry.biz8 years ago
It was the old Kameo, played with a controller
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Paul Cardy Programmer, Rebellion8 years ago
$189? Wow, that's brave.
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Show all comments (23)
John Bye Lead Designer, Freejam8 years ago
So their line-up is essentially Eye Toy: Play, Wii Sports, Eye Pet, Mod Nation Racers without the track builder, Just Dance and Wii Fit? And a Star Wars game.

Reading the blog account, the "Kinect Experience" sounds absolutely cringe-inducing. I hope they have something more impressive to show at E3 itself.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by John Bye on 14th June 2010 10:00am

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Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 8 years ago
$189? Good luck!
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Rajen Patel Freelance Gamer 8 years ago
Sounds a bit odd. and the price range seems a bit excessive(if true). Hopefully the games can live up to the hype and ultimately justify the price point.
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Terence Gage Freelance writer 8 years ago
Yeah, I agree with your comments John - reading reports this morning, I was astounded how utterly derivative the line-up so far sounds. I mean, the Star Wars game sounds great in principal, but I'll be a bit disappointed if it does turn out to be completely on-rails.

Obviously there's more to be shown at E3 itself, but I'm not even slightly convinced about the Kinect software shown so far. I also dislike the name, but video games hardware having a stupid name is nothing new.
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First of all, the name reminds me of a handkerchied brand. I know they want to come close to "connect" but that's an absolute fail. Second, having saw the ad, it's seems that it 's a high energy-consuming device with all that jumping and "running" movements (I'm saying this even though I practise soccer 8 hours a week ). And finally, 189 $ ? Seriously ? Hope it comes with a golden case.
One could rank me among the "haters" and they will be right since I truly hate the policy of Microsoft (and others) who try to present and to sell pointless devices as "revolution"
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Joe Bognar Junior PR Manager, Techland8 years ago
WHAAAT??? $189??? It's better be good! Let's say for 50 pounds, even if it's not that good, no one loses much. But for 130 pounds??? People will be REALLY angry even if it freezes just once! I don't want to repeat a lot of people before me but: Good luck with that.

P.S: Oh... and I don't think that people will have the money nowadays for Xbox 360 Slim AND Natal... sorry, Kinect!
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Philipp Nassau Student - Business Administration (M. Sc.) 8 years ago
I'm sure we have only seen a small fraction of what games will be available, hopefully because the high budget titles are not in a state where you could show them to the public yet. Let's hope these games will be finished for a winter release or Microsoft will find themselves in a situation where they are trying to sell Eye Toy for 189$.
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Failure to Kinect with Audience.....
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Does anyone know if this is the price of a Kinect device alone or does some entry-level console come with it? I heard rumors about Natal (now Kinect) + Xbox Arcade sets some time ago.
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Josef Brett Animator 8 years ago
What is the other SKU? if this is the higher end SKU, what makes it that (console, game bundle etc)? What is included with the lwer SKU?

Also the name. Kind of sounds like they were going for a cool truncation of 'Kinetic' but failed! Maybe they had thier eyes on 'Move' or something similar then had to improvise?
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Joe Martin Journalism 8 years ago
Yes, it's not been established if this is the price of just Kinect or, as some rumours are hinting, the new Xbox 360 Slim WITH a Kinect device.
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Russell Watson Senior Designer, Born Ready Games8 years ago
Considering the audience that Kinect is targeting I'm not sure I understand the surprise (and criticism) at the line-up of the games.

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Private Industry 8 years ago
John you forgot a potential Just Dance clone. :)

I have seen a short clip from the presentation, and the "live" presentations seem to be only video because the person on the stage moved after the character in the game moved.
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Not to mention, Just Dance stickign at Number 4 in UK for obviously has some money raking potential :)
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Jeff Wayne Technical Architect 8 years ago
I'd be quite surprised if Microsoft believed they could sell something like this for such a high price. We will just have to wait and see whay they officially announce I guess.

It's understandable that they are targetting games like the type they have announced also. They are proven sellers and versions of them with better graphics is a nice alternative to a new audience that may be contemplating getting a Wii at the moment.

It would be interesting to see what a 'killer app or game' could do for it however - something like Half Life 3 would be a great way to stay fit bashing headcrabs with an imaginary crowbar!

I preferred the name Natal too - not really a fan of this new one. Microsoft can rarely catch a break but it'll be interesting to see how this pans out for them.
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Bob Kreut 3D Artist, ACRONYM Games8 years ago
Sure we all made fun of the name Wii when it came out, but we got used to it (even if Revolution was way cooler sounding.) But the name Kinect is simply hard to say and I'm not sure I'll be able to get used to that. And it really doesn't conjure up the image of "family", and neither does the look of the new, sharp looking Xbox "Slim". If the price tag is that high too, I can't see it getting the "Parent" effect, where parents are buying it for their kids like they did the Wii. It will be very interesting how it goes over in the next couple days at E3.
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John Catuira Journalist 8 years ago
Some people wanted a Wii HD. It's called Kinect and Move.

But seriously, my hope is that Microsoft's press briefing today will flesh out the Kinect software lineup and/or show live demonstrations either at the presser or on the E3 floor.

My knee-jerk takeaway from this is a me-too attempt at grabbing some of the Wii audience. Microsoft will have to give us more if they hope to sell it over 100USD.
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Aleksi Ranta Category Management Project Manager 8 years ago
The Kinect will ofcourse come bundled with the console itself and prices quoted/speculated here are for the stand-alone version. And dont forget that Microsoft hasnt annouced a price and probably will not before Sony shows its card regarding the Move pricing. Move will launch before Kinect, so Microsoft is playing the waiting game.

I wouldnt expect a firm price before fall.
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Alan Pierce Programmer, Digital Delight8 years ago
Waiting for a golf game titled Kinect Fore!
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Terence Gage Freelance writer 8 years ago
Alan wins the comments. Bravo, good sir :)
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