Xbox One's Kinect is "unnecessary" and "a joke," Molyneux says

"It would be unthinkable" if Microsoft did not one day offer a system without the camera, Fable designer Peter Molyneux says.

The Kinect camera is an "unnecessary" add-on for the Xbox One and overall its inclusion is a "joke," according to industry veteran and longtime former Microsoft employee Peter Molyneux.

"I actually wish Kinect wasn't a requirement," Molyneux, who now runs his own indie studio 22Cans, told Edge. "It feels like an unnecessary add-on to me. Maybe it's because we're in England, and it doesn't really use the TV stuff, but it feels more and more like a joke."

Molyneux also said that the Kinect camera itself can be finicky.

"My son and I sit there saying random things at it, and it doesn't work," he said. "[Microsoft] could cost-reduce it [by removing Kinect]. I'm sure they're going to release an Xbox One without Kinect. It would be unthinkable that they wouldn't."

Molyneux's downtrodden outlook for the Kinect camera is somewhat of an about-face for the Fable creator. He was a strong supporter of the Kinect-enabled Project Milo prototype for Xbox 360 and didn't shy away from speaking optimistically about Kinect functionality for Fable: The Journey.

On Xbox 360, the Kinect camera was optional. But for the Xbox One, it's included with every system. Microsoft says this allows developers to create better games because they know Kinect will be there. It also is presumably the reason why the Xbox One carries a $100 premium over the PlayStation 4.

Microsoft has time and again said it has no plans to release the Xbox One without Kinect because the camera is "integral" to the complete package. Xbox executive Phil Harrison said last summer that in fact the Xbox One is Kinect. The two are fundamentally linked, he argues.

Also in Edge's feature, new Head of Xbox Phil Spencer said Microsoft is always looking for feedback from consumers, but dropping the Kinect requirement for Xbox One is "not the number one request for people." Instead, he says, it's 'Where are the great games?'"

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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Discussion

819 comments
BertisAU
BertisAU

Go back to wasting your money on your shitty god game Molyneux

Slagar
Slagar

Politics. Molyneux is just trying to get back at Microsoft. He should concentrate on... whatever it is supposed to be that he's good at...

lateralus1
lateralus1

The Kinect is a joke. It's pathetic that MS forces you to buy one with the Xbox One. It's fine that it exists, but it should have been optional like how the 1st one was. The Kinect came about as an answer to the Wii, as it was so popular with its controls at the time. That of course turned out to be just a fad and didn't last anyway. Look how badly the WiiU is doing with it's touch-pad controller (and of course lack of games). I think the reason Mr Molyneux was excited about the 1st Kinect way back when, was because of hype and optimism at the time. Of course the reality is that Kinect really is a joke with crappy dancing games and the like. 

It should have been sold separately as an option, just like how the PS4 camera is optional. Microsoft never learns. They did the same thing with Windows 8! The whole apps, tablet layout bs, and no start menu! They totally gave the finger to desktop users! Unless you get a tablet or Surface, there is no reason to get Windows 8 for desktop users.

The Kinect can be used a cheap motion-capture device, but for the end-user it's mostly a joke.


MGZ_79
MGZ_79

It's weird how he summed up his whole career with that same sentence. Zing! Realistically, they should offer the XB1 without the Kinect. I own a XB1, and I hardly ever use it.

gannon27
gannon27

Peter has just said in one sentence what we all knew as soon as we were told the Kinect would be bundled with the XB1.

RoyialNetwork
RoyialNetwork

And yet we had a Fable kinect game. And i agree, but from what i've seen, Microsoft seems dead set and forcing customers to use certain products that they otherwise wouldn't want to. Weird since letting people buy what they want from your company can also be a good thing...but, whatever.

VolcanoMan001
VolcanoMan001

It's simple: he supported the Kinect when he was being paid to do so. LOL

charlieholmes
charlieholmes

This Moyneaux guy continues to unimpress with his ideas of grandeur followed by about faces! He's a joke with how fake he is with everything he says and does! I don't like the Kinect either but can't respect a person like Molyneaux.

pip3dream
pip3dream

This guy is such a bag of hot air.  Not that I don't agree.  The Kinect is kind of a joke.  But bigger or lesser of a joke than Mr. M?


sammoth
sammoth

Molyneux also said Fable 3 was the next best thing to sliced bread. This guy needs to shut up. He is not one to talk.  This is also the Dumb@ss who made a Fable Game with Kinect only.

djpetitte
djpetitte

Kinect not being optional is beyond me

joshua6775
joshua6775

Couldn't agree more.  The voice commands are cool and all, but Kinect for 360 was like a fart in the wind that blew away quick, a fad at best. M$ needs to either maximize the thing, get the bugs out and get some really good content for it or scrap it. Case in point, Kinect sports rivals. My wife bought it for our son yesterday, we played it for about an hour. It's a wonky, unresponsive, frustrating mess. Call me crazy, but I'm old school. When I play, it's usually with my feet up in my recliner. The motion sensing game crap isn't for me.  Don't get me wrong, I love my XB1 and look forward to seeing it continue to improve, but I think ditching Kinect would be a really good first step that M$ will never take.

santinegrete
santinegrete

why the change of heart about Kinect Peter?

grin89
grin89

i just want fable 4

gunnmetal
gunnmetal

just for skype is worth it alone. its like in back to the future 2 having video calls on your tv. why cant he see that. autozoom mofo

oflow
oflow

Speaking of jokes, have you played Godus?

megawavez
megawavez

Geez - I thought he was talking about Godus.

grove12345
grove12345

didnt he preach about the kinect a while back?

anyways im a supporter of XB1 but between a controller and a very amazing smart glass i dont see me using the kinect other than few speech commands (which they need to expand on)

CaveManCobb
CaveManCobb

I agree with Peter here...did I say that right? 

parabol69
parabol69

This article could just as easily have been titled, "Molyneux is 'unnecessary and is a joke" and it would have had more truth to it.

adwerk
adwerk

Lo, even his kinects ignoring him.

mashuu7
mashuu7

I really wonder what he's trying to say that doesn't work. I rarely have issues with commands. My friend was impressed on how fast it was working when I'd say XBOX WATCH TV (to see a sports score) then back to XBOX GOTO KILLER INSTINCT.

Glic2K
Glic2K

This article should have been titled, "Peter Molyneux:  Still full of shit."

Cochleadoc
Cochleadoc

We get it Peter.

You like to talk.

Shut up already.

nomadski69
nomadski69

This article should have been entitled "We are having a slow news day so we gonna rip other publications interviews and plaster them as someone making a fuss about something he isnt"


Then plastering in bold the bit where he talks about being in ENGLAND where the KINECT serves no purpose other than voice commands as the TV stuff DOESN'T WORK, just so users can ignore it anyway and continue to slag a man off who was just doing an interview about something completely different to a different publication.


Think that covers it.

rogibasa
rogibasa

Well... the Kinect works for me pretty well, even when the English is not my primary language. My girlfriend loves the commands.

andsta7992
andsta7992

The current price of the Xbox one is 450 and it comes with Titanfall so that technically makes it cheaper than the PS4. Once you factor in the 60 dollar game price. Anyone who has the Xbox one know that the new kinect is far from a joke or unnecessary. This is an entertainment hub for your living room. No remote necessary control of your living room.  This is the future and it is what microsoft shooting for for PC and consoles if you watched the /build conference. No other technology for the home right now is doing what the Xbox One is and all people can complain about is the requirement of the deviceand the price difference which does not exist anymore. 

Gigaman222
Gigaman222

Even if fable itself a joke, I do agree with him. Microsoft shouldn't force something a majority of people don't want.

I have every system with the exception of Xbox one for this reason. Me not buying it will speak louder than any complaint mr spencer will see. Till then ill enjoy my Xbox 360, ps4, pc, etc.

Erebus
Erebus

What a politician.... Promoting only what works for him while decrying that which he has no interest. Often, these are the same things on any given year.

Zombrex
Zombrex

Looks like the final M$ check finally cleared the bank.

blackbeltjones
blackbeltjones

"Xbox One's Kinect is unnecessary and a joke, Molyneux says."

I thought Molyneux was talking about the last 15 years of his games....

UnrealPro
UnrealPro

Why are people still complaining about X1 being $100 more than PS4? Were you idiots the same people complaining that the PS3 (premium) was $200 more than Xbox 360 (premium) but bought PS3 anyways when it launched? If you're investing in next gen, $900 for both consoles is chump change compared to buying a multi grand gaming PC. I went the console route this generation only because my friends are on consoles, and I want to move to LA and get a new car before I drop serious $$$ on a serious rig.

jakerscythe
jakerscythe

I guess he learned reversals from working at M$.

ceromaster
ceromaster

That's sounds exactly how I currently feel about the Fable series.

No_Intelligence
No_Intelligence

@chrisx2k3  newest fighting game, but hottest, probably not... though there aren;t any fighting games out there right now. ufc will probably take over

pip3dream
pip3dream

@joshua6775  Yup pretty much.  I really think the kinect was a good idea, that should of just stayed an idea.  In reality, the technology just isn't there yet

oflow
oflow

@grove12345  I would like them to incorporate some type of dragon software where it would allow you to type saying letters etc.  That would be cool.

I think the potential is there for the Kinect, they are just using it for the wrong type of games currently.  I think the Kinect would work great with RTS games.  Say have a game like RUSE or Homeworld controlled with the Kinect.

MrMan2000
MrMan2000

@nomadski69  Pretty much all Eddie ever does is parrot info from other sources or press releases.  Very little actual "journalism".  

oflow
oflow

@rogibasa  thats weird I've found girls love my XBONE too.  I guess girls like gadgets.

hayden_campbell
hayden_campbell

@andsta7992  

Yeah that's a great deal from Target on paper.Ultimately, I guess it comes down to to Titanfall (and to the obvious console diffs of X1's cable integration/kinect/Azure Cloud vs. PS's more capable or powerful hardware, ps eye, PS Now and other streaming/cloud services) . For that same price you could also get a PS4 with a year of PS plus (and I'm sure there are other similar but not as great as the X1 deals out there). The up side with PS4 is if you're smart you've created a PS4 PS plus account online since the system launched that way you've been racking up all the free PS4 games so when you finally do pull the trigger you'll be gaming for months without the need to purchase a single game.

The only thing that worries me is the recent layoffs at Sony owned/financed studios earlier this year. Many made great games and with the success of the PS4 and lack of many good launch era exclusives I thought it would be all hands on deck since the consoles are more equal hardware wise this gen and it will truly be the games that decides the winner.
Having said that, Microsoft began to announce studio/developer layoffs last week but we've yet to see if its to the same extent as Sony. 
For me personally, right now I'm on the fence of which to initially get (I had all 3 consoles last gen). Like I said Sony has its great track record, but Microsoft has been paying big bucks to gobble up developers and pay out of the wazoo to keep/make 3rd party games Xbone exclusive. So it's pretty neck and neck for me right now and I'll see how 2014 goes in terms of what is actually released and if it's quality software as well as what they announce for late 2014 and into 2015 once the last gen begins to fade and developers know how to better optimize their games for the machines.
As for now, I'm leaning PS4 and continuing using my PS plus membership to register PS4 PS Plus games online so that when/if I do decide on the PS4 I'll have a free backlog that will keep me busy for months without paying an extra dime on games.

grin89
grin89

@andsta7992  makes me regret purchasing it on day one didnt get all the good free stuff and reduced price tag.

rogibasa
rogibasa

You are COMPLETELY RIGHT !!! But it needs more time to be improve and do much better than now ! But for me, kinect works just fine! :)

coolguyhero
coolguyhero

@andsta7992  what about the power buddy? microsoft think the gamers are fool by giving low power console along with high price.

grenadehh
grenadehh

@andsta7992  Not really. It's only 450 at a limited few vendors. If you Google it you'll have a hard time actually finding it at that price.

n3rdy909
n3rdy909

@Gigaman222 i disagree, they are not forcing them.folks have the right to not buy it..flatout. i got mine because of good games and a great thriving live  experience. i also have a ps4..both are great..kinect i love..just dont have many games out on sony. as im sure they are to come, like remastered ladt of us..good competition right now on both conesoles..#hailthegamer

VincentAntonio
VincentAntonio

@SpiderLuke

Fable 2 was not that bad, actually good in general, the ugly thing was the ending. Where the heck was the last boss and last battle? Suddenly puff! it ended in an ugly way, clearly they ran out of money to finish the game properly.

Andrendenum1
Andrendenum1

@oflow @grove12345  Yeah, I agree.  I don't understand how Microsoft with all their money can't incorporate voice-to-text like Google Now.   Google Now on my phone works pretty great most of the time.   Microsoft really needs to bring this functionality to fruition.