Microsoft: Motion Is The New Multiplayer

While Project Natal, and it's ability to allow Xbox 360 gamers to play video games completely free of a controller, will launch as a niche of sorts on the platform, Microsoft believes it will one day become the norm.

Motion control, Microsoft Game Studios' corporate vice president Phil Spencer told Kotaku, will change what gamers expect from games.

"Much like with mulitplayer, I think it will become the norm," Spencer said. "If you are a racing game without mulitplayer the game just didn't sell.

"We think that motion control, we think voice recognition, should become a part of gaming as well."

But Spencer points out that it's important not to shoehorn every franchise into the new tech. Microsoft Game Studios and the Xbox 360 don't plan to bring every single experience to Project Natal, at least not initially.

"Hacked in or quick to market ideas are not what we're looking for," he said. "We want to make sure that those experiences are world class."

Spencer says he's been surprised by how quickly and how strongly the outside development community has reacted to Microsoft's E3 unveiling of the motion controls.

"In the three months that Natal has been out the amount of support we have been able to gain has been impressive," he said. Indeed, during the Tokyo Game Show Microsoft rounded up Konami's Hideo Kojima, Capcom's Keiji Inafune and Sega's Toshihiro Nagoshi to get on stage and chat about the potential they see in the hardware.

"When you are starting something new it is important to get some creative talent to innovate," Spenser said. "The quality of the experience is going to be what defines it."

When Microsoft first decided to work on Project Natal the company shipped out development kits to all of their internal studios as a way of incubating different ideas, Spencer said. The result was a lot of interest and some new games.

What about Bungie or an internally developed Halo game, I asked.

"We're not going to hack something into Halo to get it to support Natal," he said. "We want to make sure we can only offer rich experiences."

But given the richness, the breadth of Halo's universe, it wouldn't be surprising if something came to Natal from it.

"We have great people helping out to evolve Halo," he said.


    I hope they don't eat their own words with the Halo part. For Halo's sake really.

    And MS' embarrassment & reputation on the Halo franchise.

    I personally, don't like halo. That's just me, but i would find it disappointing to see them force natal into a halo game to buy support and popularity. I would find it disappointing for the fans mainly. Same with the article on god of war III being an FPS, courtesy of the art director. I think that this should be the case mainly because i for one wouldn't like to see it happen to any of my most treasured games. Like assassins creed - i would absolutely resent microsoft if they intergrated natal into AC3.

    They should intergrate natal into a new gen of gaming. That's not to say put it only in the next gen of consoles. Still have it in the xbox 360, just don't force fans into liking it by suddenly intergrating it into something that has been successfully through the market. Like halo. Bring natal into a fresh game. Make it new

    There's no need for concern, M$ is not going to pump out HALO FPS in Natal form where you pretend to hold and gun and reload. This is all about interaction games, easy to use mechanics like wii sports, party games and the "elusive casual market" that only nintendo has a grip on. Sure they may be spin offs like Master Chief Baseball? But not full fledged games, not until next gen anyway. Sony on the other hand, is trying to implement precise motion controllers into core games now, Resident Evil 5 alternate anyone? To try and triumph over Nintendo...which could happen in Ninty doesn't get a more powerful system and a revised motion plus as its a temperamental pig.

    Wii was the beginning of the end for games

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