Ever since last year’s Microsoft press conference at E3 2009, people around the gaming industry have been wondering about what their new motion control system, codenamed Natal, was eventually going to end up being named. We saw a similar thing several years ago, when the Nintendo “Revolution” wound up with the then-strange-but-now-household moniker: “Wii”. Well, news has finally dropped tonight. Natal’s final title will be the Xbox “Kinect”.
While the name certainly isn’t everything, and I see the idea they’re going for, I actually thought Natal was kind of catchy in the same sense that “Wii” was, because it represented something new that we hadn’t seen before. With no controllers, Kinect is certainly going to be an interesting evolution of the motion control platform. By all accounts, this makes Sony’s Move seem like a stroke of genius in comparison.
In addition to that piece of news, there are also reports of the long-rumored “slim” XBox 360 finally making its debut at E3 this week, along with pictures of the new model. Supposedly, the only difference between this new model and the old ones is that the HDD is 250 GB and it also has built-in Wi Fi. To me, this design seems like a step back, especially compared to the PS3 slim, which was such a well done re-design of a system. This rumored model is sharp and angular. If this ends up being real, they might as well call it the XBox 360 Orthanc, after Saruman’s tower in Lord of the Rings.
Anyway, there has also been a short list of Kinect’s launch games, which include a dance game as well as a Wii Sports ripoff. So what do you guys think of all of these developments? Do you like the name Kinect?