Project Natal, the motion-controller that uses your body to interact directly with games, is Microsoft’s latest entry intended to support the almighty Xbox 360. Microsoft isn’t taking the technology lightly, stating that the lifespan could be up to five years.
Aaron Greenberg, the director of product management for Microsoft, recently spoke with CVG and had this to say on the matter:
“The richness of the technology is going to really enable experiences that never had existed before. And we’re not just speaking about what we’re doing this year, but I think two, three, four, five years from now as this evolves.
Millions of consumers this Holiday will be able to experience Project Natal and this is just the beginning of something that will change the way consumers interact with entertainment and change way our publishing partners think about game development.”
When I first saw the demo for Project Natal, I wasn’t particularly impressed by what it could really add to my gaming experience. As a gamer, in the end, all I want to do is to be able to pick up a controller and play my video games. I’m not saying Project Natal is something that’s forcing exercise upon a gamer, but the level of interactivity that had been shown hasn’t really dazzled me into wanting to buy the peripheral.
In a way, I can see it is an interruptive experience. As a gamer with a controller, who’s sitting on my bed or couch or wherever, getting up to insert something into the game can be something that slows the pace of the experience. However, if a Natal game is built from the ground-up only requiring nothing more than your body and will to participate in the game, I can view it as an interesting experience…but not yet groundbreaking.
Every new technology needs a good lead time for developers to wrap their heads (or hands) around the technology and see its uses and how it can make gameplay more fun.
I don’t expect the first few Natal games to be great, but they could be certainly intriguing enough to see where the technology goes, especially if it’s taking video games to that next level of interactivity.
Are you intending to pick up Project Natal when it comes out sometime this Winter?