Kinect is mandatory for Xbox One — encouraged for developers
Microsoft has made its motion-gesture device Kinect a permanent fixture of the Xbox One.
"Kinect has to be connected to Xbox One," Phil Spencer, the corporate vice president of Microsoft Studios, told Joystiq.
This presents the problem of an always-on camera and microphone in the living room, and developers will be encouraged to make more Kinect-supported games, which haven't been popular in the past.
"We hope they do," said Phil Harrison, the corporate vice president of Microsoft, when asked by Eurogamer if developers would have to include Kinect functionality in every game. "The fact that it's in every single box, that it comes with the console, the fact that every single home will have the console and the Kinect, allows game developers and game designers to really maximize the creative and technical possibilities."
Spencer added, "What I'm seeing in the creation process is more subtle uses of Kinect. I think when Kinect first came out on 360, everybody felt if you weren't doing jumping jacks in the middle of the room, it wasn't a Kinect game."
Kinect integration isn't mandatory across the board, though. But one developer, Crytek, has already confirmed that its game, Ryse — an Xbox One exclusive — is a brawler with "controller-based gameplay enhanced by Kinect."
This version of the device is definitely beefier than what we've seen before, too — with a 60 percent better field-of-view and a more robust sensor. It can even detect your pulse.