Button-Using Kinect "Hybrids" On the Way

Tom Goldman

Crying on the inside.
Aug 17, 2009
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Button-Using Kinect "Hybrids" On the Way



Kinect might be controller-free, but it won't discriminate against button use.

One of the primary selling points for the Xbox 360's get greasy, [http://www.amazon.com/Kinect-Sensor-Adventures-Xbox-360/dp/B002BSA298/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1288890340&sr=8-1] and there aren't 15 buttons that might confuse casual players. However, in a recent interview, Kinect director Alex Kipman revealed that there are "hybrid" games in development that will use the Xbox 360 controller and the Kinect's controller-free technology in tandem.

"We love controller-free games, we love Kinect experiences and we'll continue to grow our set of those as well," Kipman told GamesIndustry. "What we haven't really talked about, but exist, are hybrid games."

Kipman says these will be "games that are using the controller ... and pieces, if not all, of the Kinect experiences to again make those experiences more immersive, more fun and more emotionally connected." He admits that part of Kinect's development philosophy was to take the technology out of people's hands so they were no longer "enslaved" by it, but apparently understands that it's still okay to play games using buttons.

He didn't reveal what kinds of hybrid games are being developed, but only that they were in the works. Microsoft had said in the past that it was possible to use Kinect with a controller, but this is the first I've heard that actual games are in development to do so.

I'm personally wondering how well this would work. Anyone that's played a DS knows how much of a pain it can be to swap between two-hand button control and stylus control on the fly. It might not be as painful from controller to Kinect as you can still hold the controller with one hand, put it in your lap, or just kick your feet and yell or something. In my opinion, these hybrid Kinect games will likely be the most compelling experiences, because they can implement the accuracy of button control, and the cool-factor of Kinect.

Source: GI.biz [http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2010-11-03-kipman-hybrid-control-games-on-way-to-360]

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Shycte

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Mar 10, 2009
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Well, if done right it could work. But wouldn't we end up with something like the PS3 six-axes?
 

Jonluw

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May 23, 2010
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Sounds interesting. I could imagine it would be fun - if a bit flimsy - to use voice commands to select your line of dialogue in an RPG like Mass effect or Oblivion.

I wonder if they will focus on using both control schemes at the same time - moving around while holding the controller - or if they'll separate the Kinect-controlled parts from the controller-um...controlled parts.
 

Buizel91

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Aug 25, 2008
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I can see this being for that Battlefield game set in the future, possibly Project Draco as well.

Least us controller players aren't left out on these games :) just hope they work!
 

Buizel91

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Aug 25, 2008
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Jonluw said:
Sounds interesting. I could imagine it would be fun - if a bit flimsy - to use voice commanads to select your line of dialogue in an RPG like Mass effect or Oblivion.

I wonder if they will focus on using both control schemes at the same time - moving around while holding the controller - or if they'll separate the Kinect-controlled parts from the controller-um...controlled parts.
That would be quite cool, i can't wait to see how this turns out.
 

Megacherv

Kinect Development Sucks...
Sep 24, 2008
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Ghost Recon: Future Warrior will do this (you use your hand to give commands). My friend has rabbited on about this when we have pointless Move vs. Kinect, and it's the only example of hardcore gameplay that he can give, yet when I multiple examples for Move he still thinks I lost the argument.

But £130 for hand gesture recognition? Piss off, I'd rather use the button presses (and with a PS3 it's not that hard because of the placement of the d-pad)

End of rant, I shall now bathe myself in acid to wash the fanboyism away
 

Delock

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Mar 4, 2009
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This is getting closer to my whole idea of a sort of PC experience on consoles (motion controls being a substitute for a mouse, meaning that soon stuff that could never reach a console without major work due to the lack of interface commands may soon start coming over). This could potentially expand the market for the better, rather than just being "wagglefests."

Still waiting for a true 3D meets motion controlled sort of experience though... (think of that CGI stuff from the Iron Man movie with the holographic interface, or the countless "holo tools" in scifi).
 

RheynbowDash

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Jan 26, 2009
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Isn't the idea of advancing video game technology to MINIMIZE the motions between fingers and on screen action?
 

captainwolfos

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Feb 14, 2009
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Eh, I probably won't start to care about controller free games until I can swing a sword and ride a horse on one of the Elder Scrolls games, feel all the movements and fatigue effects and shed a few pounds, all the while remaining completely immersed in the gameplay.

Which won't be for a very long time, I would imagine.
 

theApoc

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Oct 17, 2008
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Really? The author really can't see how this would work? Can see the benefit of a kinect like system for menu/inventory and a standard control for everything else? Seriously how do these people get jobs writing about tech?
 

tehroc

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Jul 6, 2009
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Lets consider something simple like quick panning to look around while playing FPS would seem easily possible. Require little of overall movements. Look to see Kinect "enhancements" to your favorite series in the future if it really takes off, I'd imagine.
 

Eldritch Warlord

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Jun 6, 2008
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Shycte said:
Well, if done right it could work. But wouldn't we end up with something like the PS3 six-axes?
Sort of I think. It will be more accurate and flexible of course. Since Kinect is able to track movement better than a few accelerometers you stuck into the controller at the last second, plus it can track feet and head movement.

Use of voice commands is also a possibility. Remember Tom Clancy's EndWar? That game was fun to play aside from it not being able to tell apart "Alpha" and "Delta" (pretty important since units were designated by the NATO Phonetic Alphabet).

When I read this story I first envisioned a Pikmin-esque strategy game which made use of hand gestures and voice commands.
 

mad825

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Mar 28, 2010
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I suppose if they could combine the facial recognition and voice commands abilities with the controllers then perhaps it might not be a bigger flop than it is now...they still have to implement it correctly though.
 

300lb. Samoan

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Mar 25, 2009
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Controller + Minority Report menu systems = lots of sex appeal, although I'm not sure it's enough to put it in my living room
 

Flauros

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Mar 2, 2010
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Buy KINECT, where you ARE the controller! (warning: may require a controller)
 

Firetaffer

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May 9, 2010
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ToonLink said:
Isn't the idea of advancing video game technology to MINIMIZE the motions between fingers and on screen action?
I've always thought of it like this! It's as if technology is going backwards.

And as for the article, doesn't that defeat the whole purpose of 'being the controller.' :p
 

KP Shadow

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Jul 7, 2009
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I got a few ideas...

1. Use it in a manner similar to the Wii Speak for online casual games with voice chat.
2. Sixaxis rip-off
3. Use the controller for menus and the Kinect for gameplay.