Where was Kinect at E3?
I bought your newest system's Day One edition at full price, and while I enjoy the Kinect's voice recognition features, I'm still left with an unused optical device that’s still attached to that microphone. I'm so eager to use it eventually that I JUST purchased a stand for it so it wouldn't just be in front of my TV, but at a spot where it can see me.
But what’s going to justify the purchase of this stand?
I viewed your pre-E3 press conference and there wasn't even one mention of Kinect. There was a lot on your attempt to get in the VR arena, the HoloLens. The Xbox One controller was even announced as a pack in to two other VR systems, Oculus Rift and Valve VR. Surely one would think that if other company's products were mentioned, then a device that you already have in roughly 10 million homes around the world would at least be mentioned.
As soon as I get to the show floor at E3, I thought to myself, "Hmmmm, maybe something on the floor will use Kinect. Let's go look." Maybe the Kinect titles for this year were just not worthy of the press conference.
However, I found nothing. In fact, the space Kinect would previously take was used for a huge Rise of the Tomb Raider display.
Last year there was Harmonix's Dance Central: Spotlight and Fantasia, which were great efforts from what is arguably Kinect's top developer, surpassing even Microsoft. Even Japanese developers were there using Kinect with Swery 65's D4 finally appearing in playable form, even though it was kind of hidden out of the way on the floor.
But this year, I don't even see Kinect at E3 in any form.
Is there any hope?
Kinect is coming up on its sixth holiday season as part of the Xbox ecosystem, and on the Xbox One it’s dying a very visible death. The first 10 million Xbox One systems sold have what could be considered an optical brick attached, a brick that isn't even being mentioned at the biggest gaming event of the year. The only games released this year that I can remember off of the top of my head that utilize Kinect are downloadable titles, the biggest of which is Fruit Ninja Kinect 2 -- and that was even released suddenly, without previous notice.
Fruit Ninja Kinect 2?!
No effort was made to mention Kinect in anything at E3. There’s a Summer of Arcade-esque event coming up to highlight downloadable titles on the Xbox One, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Kinect is MIA.
Even the new uses for Kinect outside of games are half-baked. Why doesn't every Xbox Live content card come with a QR code that can be scanned with Kinect? At least give me more OS use for the motion features aside from accidentally rewinding live TV when I'm reaching for my drink. I actually think in some ways the first Kinect’s gestures on the Xbox 360 were easier to use than the second versions on the Xbox One.
With HoloLens as your hot new tech, we may end up with a glorified mic that accidentally pauses our TV as soon as 2016. With the way Kinect was treated at this year’s E3, the future for the device is pretty gloomy.
Thanks for listening,
An Xbox One Kinect Owner