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Microsoft: "We've done a great job of innovating"

Schappert admits he gets "riled" when company is accused of copying rivals

Speaking directly after his keynote presentation at the Tokyo Game Show, Microsoft's John Schappert has said that the company has been responsible for some of the biggest innovations in home gaming, and the talent currently at Microsoft has "shaped the industry forever".

Schappert was speaking during a round table interview, detailed on our sister site, and answering criticisms that the addition of avatars and social networking to Xbox Live was simply copying services offered by rivals Nintendo and Sony.

"The innovation criticism is almost ironic to me," said Schappert. "You've got the Xbox, which is the console that pioneered hard drives, broadband gaming, online gaming, Achievements and gamercards. It's the console that arguably pioneered first-person shooters in your living room, wireless controllers... I could go on.

"I think we've earned our chops in terms of innovation," he added. "The games division has some brilliant people who have done amazing things, and who have shaped the industry forever. I think we've done a great job of innovating and we continue to lead."

Schappert said that he thinks Nintendo's Miis are "wonderful," but Microsoft's introduction of avatars is not a copycat move, just an extension of the 360 gamercard.

"With respect to Avatars - Miis are wonderful. Nintendo has done great things," offered Schappert. "But avatars are just a logical extension of what we've had already. We've had a gamercard and a gamer pic; I want to take that to the next level. Now we've got Live parties, we launched the first video store... So I get a little riled there.

"I think we've done some great things for the industry and for gamers," he said.

During the keynote presentation at TGS Microsoft committed to a date when the New Xbox Experience will go live – November 19 – as well as revealing Xbox Live has over 14 million members.

The company also lifted the lid on a number of new titles including Halo 3: Recon and Tekken 6.

The full interview with John Schappert can be read here.

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Matt Martin


Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.