Kinect on Windows: My Thoughts

For those of you that did not see the announcement or have heard about it in the past day or two, Microsoft’s Steve Balmer announced at CES the release of the Kinect on Windows.   What could this mean for gaming?  A lot.  No, I’m not talking about cheesy party games or the fact that you’ll look like a total moron dancing in front of your monitor to Lady Gaga.  I’m talking about full motion tracking and the possibility of using “gestures” much as you would on a Apple touch-pad to control aspects of what is going on your screen and games.  Now this is all speculation, as the only real information given was the release date of (February 1) and that developers are currently working on applications to implement full functionality and really use this technology to its full advantage.  I try not to be skeptical about something new, but take for example the video below.  The Wii was revolutionary and introduced something new to console gamers and it did fairly well.  But take a look at how they tried to implement it into a game such as Call of Duty.  We all know, this didn’t end with record breaking sales.

How ridiculous does that guy look?  This wasn’t revolutionary or going to change the way we play popular games much like everyone thought.  Could you imagine trying to play Battlefield 3 like this?  However, there have been people that have implemented the Kinect in games such as Skyrim with voice recognition with great success.  While still looking a little “clunky” and slow compared to use with a controller/keyboard and mouse this looks much more promising.  A lot of hit titles these days  have too many controls and possible key bindings to have you dumb it down to you waving your hands around.  However, I do think it could have its place as an accessory to your existing controls.  For instance, bind your motions to certain keystrokes and have it recognize them.  Personally, im more excited at the fact that it might be possible to control on screen user interfaces on my desktop environment.  What do you think?  Do you think Microsoft will adopt this technology and continue improving upon it?  Does this type of technology have its place in the gaming world?

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