Natal to catch some unconventional advertisement

Project Natal could be in Cosmo soon.According to an MCV report, Microsoft is going to take Natal marketing outside the male 18-34 demographic. The company supposedly held a VIP showcase for select media outlets, particularly women’s mags like Cosmopolitan and Glamour, to show off Natal and talk about options for exposure.

Microsoft is taking a page out of the Nintendo playbook if this thing is true. The Wii’s success came largely from marketing to non-gamers and convincing them that bowling, even with terrible graphics, is a lot of fun if it doesn’t play like a traditional game. It’s that same group of people Microsoft is after, people who may want something social to do with friends that doesn’t have the learning curve of a controller. The only real problem I see is that a lot of those people already own a Wii. How can you convince them they need a Natal, too?

MCV says Microsoft will be using celebrity endorsements to market Natal in “the parenting press, toy retailers and publications which primarily cater for non-gamers.” Good luck with that guys.

Source: MCV


Will delay sink Project Natal?

Xbox 360 Breakout game.The blog circuit is finally getting some hands-on time with Project Natal, and there’s a lot of excitement about it. The breakout game in particular seems to get people to really appreciate the power of the peripheral, even more so than the Burnout demo we’ve seen so many places. A big part of that is the barely noticeable lag that accompanies the system. Unfortunately, barely is just enough to make for a frustrating game experience.

MTV says the delay is about .1 seconds – just enough that you’ll notice it, especially in games like Burnout where to-the-millisecond response becomes important. That kind of delay is bad enough for finely tuned controls that it could take Natal down to something neat you show your friends once. That is, if fine control were all Microsoft was after.

One really cool feature of Natal is head tracking. It gives the viewer a whole new level of immersion by changing the image on screen based on the position of your eyes relative to that screen. It’s something Johnny Chung Lee demoed using the Wiimote some time ago. It’s just one facet of Natal that will take it beyond a simple control device to creating a new kind of experience with games.


Pachter thinks Natal will outsell Arc 5 to 1

Milo on Natal.Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter has already had a busy week. So far he’s predicted that Project Natal will run $50 for Xbox 360 users and that it will sell 10 million units in about a year, which he thinks will be five times as many units as Sony’s Arc will sell.

“I think that the Sony motion controller will have some problems gaining traction, since it is not an ‘in the box’ solution,” he told PS3 Center. “That will probably limit adoption to 1 or 2 million at the outset.” He thinks the extra sales of Natal will help it gain a third-party advantage over the Arc.

The real shocker for me is that $50 price tag for Natal. For a company that charges more than a benjy for a low capacity hard drive, $50 for the latest gaming technology seems crazy. Of course, that’s exactly what Nintendo did with the Wii and I think we all know how that turned out.


Bungie finally denies Halo: Reach Natal rumors

Halo: Reach logo.Ever since Microsoft announced Project Natal there has been speculation about which blockbuster titles would see motion controlled support. What’s more blockbuster than Halo? Nothing. But thankfully, Bungie confirmed it won’t be making Reach with Natal capabilities.

The confirmation came after a leaked screenshot showed a targeting reticule off to the side of the screen.

“Halo: Reach is NOT a Natal title and is being developed expressly with the traditional Xbox 360 controller in mind.”

Just to assuage any doubt, Bungie included the bug report for the anomaly along with it’s denial of Natal support. The full post was a “mythbusters” post, resolving other rumors like HUD and crosshair customization. You can find all those goodies at the Bungie website.


Microsoft denies impulse buy rumors for Natal

Project Natal announcement.Launch rumors for Project Natal are a dime a dozen, and according to Xbox UK boss Neil Thompson, the latest batch are bunk, too. This last round of rumors said the periph was due out November of 2010, would release with 14 compatible titles, at a price that could be as low as $50. Right.

As Chris Lewis, Xbox’s head of Europe puts things, “Now you know better than to listen to that stuff! We will announce in good time.” Message received, Mr. Lewis. I can’t imagine how Microsoft could possibly get Natal down to the $50 range, or why they would. The install base for the 360 is big enough that people would pay much more for this kind of experience. Think about the Rock Band sets that regularly go for $200. With a bundled game or two, you can bet Natal will at least break a hundred.

As long as he had the world’s ear, Lewis was glad to keep the hype train rollin’. “I’m not going to be specific about what they might be,” he said. “I will say however we’re committed to ensure those experiences are unique, compelling and very exciting right from the outset. That has to happen and that will happen.” Don’t worry you little heads over a release date – just know that when we get one, you’ll be rushing to mark your calendars.

Source: Eurogamer


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