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New Xbox Live Features & Windows Phone Features

17 Aug

With Gamescom in full flow, Microsoft have dropped a few tidbits for Xbox Live and the new Windows Phone Mango Platform coming next month.

These include;

  • “Avatar Awardables: Like achievements—but wearable. Once unlocked, these items will automatically appear in your avatar closet and can be worn on your avatar’s sleeve as a badge of honor. “Chickens Can’t Fly,” a forthcoming Xbox LIVE release, will be among the first titles to feature them.
  • Game Add-ons: In the Xbox LIVE title “Beards & Beaks,” players can purchase extra mushrooms and other items from within the game using Microsoft Points. In the months ahead, keep your eyes out for more titles in Marketplace that let you buy in-game add-ons and downloadable content like extra weapons or levels.
  • Parental Controls: The next release of Windows Phone gives parents more control of what content their child can access on Windows Phone, including M-rated (Mature) games. The first M-rated Windows Phone title, “Splinter Cell: Conviction,” is scheduled to arrive in the Marketplace later this fall.
  • Fast Async: A new Xbox LIVE service coming this fall that improves gameplay for multiplayer, turn-by-turn (or asynchronous) Windows Phone games.”
Check out Windows Phone Blog for more…
MB

Microsoft Embracing Unofficial Hackers Of Kinect?

17 Jun

Microsoft this week released the beta version of its Kinect non-commercial software development kit (SDK).

Gamespot report that “The Kinect SDK includes drivers for using the camera with Windows-based PCs, as well as source code samples, including a simple game where users interact with shapes falling from the top of the screen. Using voice commands, players can change the size, speed, color, and shape of the falling objects.”

This is a major move fromMicrosoft, will they be allowing developers to build their own Apps for publish on Xbox Live?  They previously seemed to frown on the unoffocial but often cool and funny hacks of Kinect.  Maybe they are now seeing this as a major opportunity to further embed the Xbox in peoples living rooms.

MB

Mass Effect 3 Outed with Voice Controls and Kinect Support

7 Jun

In case you missed all the detail yesterday from the Microsoft E3 announcement, check out the trailer above.

Bioware outed the project officially yesterday with confirmation that the game will pack voice controls and Kinect support.  Awesome!  They are touting it as the best in the series and a new edge to gaming so it should be something to look forward to in an ever improving franchise.

Will you be buying it and will all the Kinect activity announced yesterday tempt you to finally take the plunge with a brand new Kinect? 😉

MB

The Xbox Live & Dashboard Experience Just Got Livelier

7 Jun

Microsoft has delivered one heck of a press conference at E3 today (check out our summary as it happened Post).

Just to add some clarity, XBL will be substantially tweaked this Fall with the addtion of Live TV, Bing Search, You Tube, enhanced Kinect features and a fresh new dashboard.  And if that was not enough, then add to this voice activation for these additional features to replace your controller and the Xbox is truly becoming the console of the living room and with Kinect (for which there were a multitude of new games coming out), perhaps even the end of the significance of the handheld controller.

So think about asking your console to switch TV channels or your Avatar to run a different path, or Bling to search a phrase, place or term and to all of this voice recognition to be added to the gaming experience provided as well.

Xbox looks like it is taking a major step forward, as is Kinect and we wonder if Playstations move for handheld motion control way leave then rueing the enhancements Kinect, Voice Control and the new Xbox Live experience will pave.

Let us know your thoughts.

MB