Strong Kinect-ion?: First Impressions of Microsoft’s New Motion-Control Camera

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Wrap-up:

Kinect feels like the future. But not a future I really want to be playing games with.

(More on Techland: Your Next Move: What You Need to Know About the PS3 Motion Controller)

What I really want is Kinect technology in my TV, my set-top box, my laptop and desktop computers.

In the game space, it feels like Kinect asks for a huge cognitive leap for an experience that’s not a commensurate return. You’re making a big mental step to play mostly shallow mini-games that hit on the lowest common denominator of gesture-based gaming.

Like the Move two months ago, Kinect doesn’t really have a game that makes the hardware a must-buy experience. Dance Central makes the most of the technology for gaming entertainment and Kinectimals‘ cuteness s hard to resist. The games right now all feel too safe. There’s a lot of family-friendly fare in the Kinect launch library, which stands as the surest sign that Microsoft is courting the same casual console market that Nintendo’s exploited since the Wii’s debut. Microsoft’s commitment seems to indicate Kinect’s not going away anytime soon. But the big question is how long it will take for the games to evolve into something as amazing as the device’s underlying technology.

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