Kinect Games

Discussion in 'Console Gaming' started by AzBat, Jun 15, 2010.

  1. bkilian

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    PSEye was really just the first version of the tech tree that Kinect is on. We're basically buying 286s and wanting to run Crysis on them, and then complaining when it doesn't work. Currently Kinect works frame-by-frame, for each frame, we determine the players, work out their body parts, and attach a skeleton to it. Each frame is independent. That's why you get strange results sometimes, where your skeleton will jump around and do things not physically possible. The fact that it works at all is magical. We hand the algorithm a pixel and the surrounding pixels, and it returns whether it's a player and which body part that pixel belongs to (simplified a little, but reasonably accurate).

    Possible future enhancements would be adding a time dependency, ie, use previous frames to determine if the current skeleton is accurate. The human body can only move so fast, so if the skeleton has assumed a pose that it couldn't have gotten into in that time frame, do some more processing. Another enhancement would be modelling the skeletal joints, so that the skeleton could never get into a position that is impossible for the body to achieve (Like your knees bending backwards etc)

    Some of these could work out and make the system a lot better, some might not give enough benefit for the processing cost. Only time will tell.
     
  2. Shifty Geezer

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    I wasn't making any comparison between Kinect and PSEye other than the opportunities these hardwares offer just aren't being turned into worthwhile products by a lot of developers. PSEye could have done more. Sixaxis could have. Live Vision could have as could Kinect. The developers just aren't being inventive in their applications. Kinect 2 doesn't need to be invented for core-games to have worthwhile motion additions. Core games could be benefitting now with Kinect if only the devs had a little imagination and application.
     
  3. Arwin

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    Personally, I think the biggest thing holding back Kinect in more hardcore applications is Microsoft deliberately seeking not to address that market in order to prevent consumer confusion and have a clear message. This is not necessarily bad, but will eventually hold back progress.

    Once Microsoft does get more serious about it, then I think there are two important factors. One of them, is allowing props. Full body tracking and regular dual analog controllers don't match very well. Kinect isn't precise or fast enough to be able to handle a more hardcore experience. Should they allow simply a splittable version of the dual analog controller, that could make for a very good combination.

    Kinect 2 can address that issue even better, by being more precise and getting the lag down to negligible levels. I also think that Microsoft recognises that once you start doing more precise Kinect work, integration with 3D is a big plus (leaked documents seem to hint at as much). For instance, hitting and kicking virtual items in 3D space is so much easier when you actually see them in 3D. I know this partly through playing a lot of Move Fitness, which is pretty much lag-free (great feeling) but most events would still be vastly improved if you could actually see everything in 3D, and you could do so much more.

    But another big issue I am seeing is that games are designed to work with a dual analog controller first. Very few games then build in functionality that is better than the dual analog controller alternative, simply because the games have been designed with that limitation first. This can only change if for next gen, Kinect becomes a standard feature. Personally, I can't wait for a game like Skyrim to actually allow you to wield a sword, shoot an arrow and so on with motion controls, and be designed to work that way, no matter if that is with the next Move or next Kinect, and the more they overlap, the better the odds that multi-platform titles do something useful with these features.
     
  4. Shifty Geezer

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    Unless MS are actively barring games from using Kinect simultaneously with the controller, there's nothing stopping 3rd parties adding player tracking, similar to PS3 titles adding Move support. The lack of compelling 'hardcore' reasons to own Kinect or Move is because the developers aren't implementing them in worthwhile ways that add to the experience. Halo and Mass Effect and many other 360 best-seller should have Kinect enhancements that make ownership of Kinect a must-have improvement for everyone, rather than just a peripheral for party games or dashboard control.
     
  5. Arwin

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    Yes, this is what I have been saying. This was not allowed, would confuse the message. Peripherals are currently still officially not allowed, but at E3 there was a basketball game that had received an exemption, and this is supposed to be a test/prelude to that restriction being lifted.

    In addition, Kinect only (relatively) recently started supporting tracking players while sitting down. And a dual analog controller that requires both hands on the controller doesn't lend itself well to be combined with gaming in a standing position. So there was all sorts of things stopping 3rd parties right there.

    And I am maintaining that for Kinect (I still disagree with you in regards to Move), this is partly because it has been far too difficult to do anything hardcore with it for developers, and that this has in part been on purpose - Kinect's primary goal was to reach a larger, 'casual' audience, and Microsoft succeeded in no small part thanks to giving that the right amount of focus. They wanted to press the controller-less experience, and therefore no peripherals were allowed. The Better with Kinect initiative was their first real step towards making Kinect more appealing to the hardcore, and even if that is just voice commands for now, I'm convinced we'll see that evolve.
     
  6. Rotmm

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    I have a problem with this. It seems "The Hardcore" both want Microsoft make efforts to cater to them with Kinect, while at the same time disparaging any attempts to do so (such as with voice control). But really, why does it have to?


    Firstly, do the hardcore really support a platform? I've played games for over 30 years and have at different times been a 'casual', 'core' and 'hardcore' gamer. I'd put myself at 'core' right now, but of course all of these things are open to different interpretations. However, I'd say when I was at my most 'hardcore' was back in the Quake3/UT days - being a UT fan myself. At that time Epic had a global leaderboard system and I was top 20 in DM for a period. And I invested a lot, not only in time but in real cash. I had the fastest processor, the fastest graphics card, gaming mouse and tweaked the shit out of it to look and run the best it could. I was in a clan, heavily invested in forums, in the mod scene and all that jazz.

    I rarely bought other PC games though. I rarely invested in a way that would benefit software developers.

    I have a few friends now who are hardcore gamers, one of which was an old UT buddy that I friended recently. He plays a lot of BF3. A lot. I've never actually played with him as I don't own it, but I've bought 8-10 games since friending him, he's not played anything else (which I assume means he's not bought anything else).

    So I'm a core gamer, a gamer who spends, a gamer who supports the wider ecology of various systems (in my case, primarily Microsofts), the type of gamer I assume platform holders strive to provide for in the hope of engendering some kind of system loyality.

    And as a core gamer, as well as a middle-aged family man with 'some' disposable income, Kinect being just for party, fitness and dancing games is perfect for me. Back near the start of this generation people coming round would invariably mean that Guitar Hero or Singstar came out. However, GH is still pretty hard for non-gamers and not everyone is a karaoke fan. Kinect Sports on the other hand, anyone can get the hang of.... even more so than Wii Sports. Kinect is fine for that.

    Why does it even need to be shoehorned into a wider range of titles? It's about offering a wider range of experiences, not trying to change a current experience into something it's not.
     
  7. Silent_Buddha

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    It doesn't but it seems like many (but not all) "core" gamer types feel that if something doesn't cater to them or their type of playing style then it isn't a valid or worthwhile pursuit. They will look at Dance Central and pass it off as fluff and not a "game," and hence turn their noses up at it. While Guitar Hero which is similarly fluff is considered a game due to it's physical controls and relatively quick response. So they look at Kinect and many of it's games and think it has no valid reason for existing.

    It's interesting that "casual" gamers don't think that way. They can look at something like Halo which they will never play and say good for you. They never tend to look at something that offers absolutely nothing to them and then turn their nose up at it as if it was the worst thing since <thing you hate>. They just figure it's not for me, but they are glad to see it's there for someone to enjoy. It's no wonder Nintendo loves the casual gamers. And why MS wants the casual gamers. They are far more accepting of diverse game styles, types, and experiences than what many would consider the "core" gamer.

    Hell, "core" gamers will rapidly turn on their own kind if they happen to like a different game within the same genre. Just look at all the COD bashing. You rarely see that with casuals. I can't think of many times when I've heard casual gamers exclaim that Super Mario has sold out and now sucks donkey balls and everyone should be playing X game with similar gameplay instead. :D

    Regards,
    SB
     
  8. Arwin

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    Actually, that's not the reason. There are in fact quite a large number of stupid reasons why 'hardcore' gamers often dismiss such games (I only want to shoot things, my thumbs are glued to my analog sticks, etc.), but there are also different requirements from games. Basically, while nobody has an issue with games being easy to get into, they also need to be hard to master and provide precise feedback on your progress. It's a pretty simple requirement, but I will be so bold as to hold it universally true.

    And for Rotmm, you'll just have to accept that not everyone is happy to leave the massive potential of these devices for deeper gameplay experiences on the table, because it is enough that the casual are being served. ;) But especially for Kinect, I think it will probably take the next generation of Kinect to enable deeper gameplay experiences.
     
  9. Shifty Geezer

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    It doesn't need to be shoehorned - quite the opposite, shoehorning Kinect into core games would just give Kinect a bad name. There's no reason not to design core games with strong Kinect experiences through clever design and implementation though. Everyone likes better games, and Kinect could make the core game franchises better. The fact that it's not being used in that way gives the core gamers reason to complain that Kinect isn't for them.

    If MS wants the core, 40+ million strong gamer base to buy into Kinect, and these people don't care for dancing games or party games, then MS will have to get Kinect providing something useful to the genres and game styles these core gamers do like. Stands to reason.
     
  10. AzBat

    AzBat Agent of the Bat
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    Arwin,

    There are a few more titles that use both Kinect & controller:

    Steel Battalion
    Halo Anniversary
    Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows Part 1

    So I don't think it's not allowed. It's just not their focus at the moment. I'm sure when they find an experience that is amazing combining the two, I'm sure we'll see more of it. For right now, I don't think they're overly concerned with attracting hard core experiences to Kinect.

    Tommy McClain
     
  11. Arwin

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    They're shifting focus right now, they've only just recently started allowing these type of things.
     
  12. AzBat

    AzBat Agent of the Bat
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    But that's not true. They've been doing them since December. I will agree they are pushing them more recently, but that's a far cry from them still not being officially supported. Like all first gen games things get better as time moves along.

    Back on topic...

    Major Nelson today announced the new Kinect Central tile showcasing everything Kinect & with its launch comes a free copy of the XBLA game Haunt, Yes, its US only & runs until July 2.

    Tommy McClain
     
  13. joker454

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    Cool thx, was thinking of getting that game so free makes the decision easy :)
     
  14. BadTB25

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    Yup,

    I'm away from home, but emailed the wife to download this game while I'm gone.
     
  15. TheAlSpark

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    Bah! The range of dates even includes Canada Day. :3 No sale.

    ahem.
     
  16. NavNucST3

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    Personally, I just wish the Kinect Games were day-date retail and Games on Demand. Actually, I think all of MSFTs titles take way too long to hit Games on Demand.
     
  17. AzBat

    AzBat Agent of the Bat
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    Amazing but true, but I played a new game last night. A Kinect game no less. LOL Yes, I played Mars Landing Rover. Don't laugh: it wasn't too bad. I had downloaded it when it first came out, but didn't play until my Curiosity Rover mania got huge yesterday. It's a small mini game that's part of the Kinect Fun Labs(achievements worth 50 Gamerscore). I didn't hear a lot of good things when it was released. So my expectations were a little low. That's probably why I was a little surprised. It's definitely geared more to the younger crowd. I think upper elementary & middle school kids would love it. Even has voice over work from Al Chen who was giving all the updates during EDL. Plus, it has science facts behind the vehicle & its mission. Plus, a nice quality 3D rendered video of the rover on Mars that I hadn't seen before. But as for the gaming part, it's a little tricky. But that's been par for most Kinect games in general. Some will probably will get a little aggravated playing it over & over again after failing the final landing part, but it feels quite comparable to what I expect from the real thing. Like they said: "Landing on Mars is hard". :)

    BTW, if you're looking for more Mars fun I would check out a new Mars Edition of Kodu Game Lab. It's free on the PC. They have a version on XBLIG for $5, but they haven't announced if they are going to include the new Mars features in an update or release a new version. Hell, they may not even bother with a XBLIG version.

    http://www.kodugamelab.com/

    Tommy McClain
     
  18. Cyan

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    New Kinect game. "Baila Latino", some catchy songs in there.

     
  19. Shifty Geezer

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    Sadly, not very new as just another dance game. Also looks pretty hard if there's no tutorial to learn the moves ahead of having to make them! The only guide seems to be a little scrolling indication on the bottom right.
     
  20. FarticusMaximus

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    I was about to say this is stretching the definition of 'new'. I was Geezer-beaten. (Geezumped?)
     
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