Kinect 250GB Xbox 360 bundle unveiled, TGS unveilings promised

"Special edition" will offer high-storage console, camera-based motion-sensing system, and Kinect Adventures for $400; "new controller-free games" coming at next week's show.

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In June, Microsoft officially redubbed its Project Natal motion-sensing system as Kinect and unveiled the new $300 250GB Xbox 360 slim. In July, the software giant announced a new $200 4GB variant of the thinner 360, which will also be available in a $300 bundle with Kinect and the minigame compilation Kinect Adventures.

River rafting is one of the activities in Kinect Adventures. And, no, this is not how one really rides a raft through rapids.
River rafting is one of the activities in Kinect Adventures. And, no, this is not how one really rides a raft through rapids.

Today, Microsoft announced a new $400 bundle that will feature the 250GB Xbox 360, Kinect, and Kinect Adventures. Microsoft is billing the bundle as a "special edition" and, in true promotional form, says it will only be available "while supplies last."

Besides its 250GB hard drive, the top-end Xbox 360 slim comes with a gloss (vs. matte) black finish and built-in Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n connectivity. Its chassis has ample venting to cool its CPU and GPU, which are both made with a 45nm production process--meaning they will run cooler to begin with. As a result, the console requires a smaller fan for its cooling system, which Microsoft promises will be "whisper quiet."

As for Kinect Adventures, the minigames compilation will offer various activities, such as river rafting and the dodgeball game demonstrated at the 2009 Electronic Entertainment Expo. It is one of around 15 launch games for the camera-based, controller-free motion-sensing system, and Microsoft promised even more new games would be unveiled at next week's Tokyo Game Show.

Kinect will launch in North America on November 4 for $150 a la carte and will go on sale in Europe on November 10 and Japan on November 20. Though someretailers are skeptical, some analysts are predicting the system will sell over 4 million units in the fourth quarter alone. The accessory is already stirring controversy, though, with its lack of support for languages and dialects other than North American English, UK English, Japanese, and Mexican Spanish at launch.

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