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Why Plastic Junk is Coming to a Kinect Near You, and Why the Controllerless Console Won’t Remain that Way for Long

Microsoft introduced a revolutionary controllerless device: The Kinect Sensor, which has been met with lots of willing buyers. But will it really remain controllerless?

We believe publishers will sooner or later (read: sooner) realize: why charge $50 for a Kinect Game when you can throw in some cheap plastic junk and charge $80-100 for the same thing? Introducing the future of Kinect titles:

Halo Kinect: Trackable Plastic Assault Rifle IncludedHalo Kinect: Trackable Plastic Assault Rifle Included

Need for Speed: PlastiqueNeed for Speed: Plastique

Japanese Dating Simulator Bundled with an Inflatable Lifesize Doll… wait, what?!Japanese Dating Simulator Bundled with an Inflatable Lifesize Doll… wait, what?!

It could get really spammy, folks. Even spammier than Tony Hawk Shred and the 900 other ultra garbage Wii shovelware games. Since Kinect can track things optically, in theory the plastic junk doesn’t even really need any serious electronics, such as a racing game that came with a 10 cent plastic wheel, or a Star Wars game that came with a 25 cent plastic lightsaber.

If they are really smart, they may even find a way to make the game free or very cheap, and then charge you per weapon in the game. For example, buy the next sword fighting/adventure game for $5, but then you have to buy the plastic sword, the battle axe, and the bow and arrow, each for $20 if you want all the weapons. And they might even get away with it, even when this didn’t work with digital content download, because they can make the obvious claim that there is cost in producing a physical plastic sword.

The weird thing is people could try to save money by making fake versions of the plastic props themselves, thereby “pirating” the ingame objects. This could start some kind of arms race between the “hackers” and the developers to develop better object recognition/more distinctive items that are hard to replicate.

It’s a brave new world for Kinect users.

See also, now that the Kinect is out: Kinect Sales Report

Copyright Attribution: Click images for attribution information.

by Margaret Walker on Mon, 11/29/2010 - 11:43

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