Microsoft clarifies Halo Anniversary's use of Kinect, smoothes our furrowed brows

It emerged yesterday that Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition will feature Kinect integration. With such scant information to work with, we had a guess at how that might work, concluding that any kind of Kinect-enabled gameplay would inevitably be rubbish. Seems like Microsoft realised its announcement was too vague and worrying, so it's released some much-needed clarifcation.

On the Halo Waypoint forum, administrator 'bs angel' told concerned forumites:

"Just to let everybody know, the Kinect features we're exploring with Halo: Anniversary are optional and won't affect your core gameplay experience. Our mission, from day one, has been to deliver a faithful recreation of the original game, and we remain dedicated to seeing that through to completion."

Xbox's own Major Nelson (Larry Hryb) then retweeted about the issue (which just goes to show how high up this goes).

So there we have it. Kinect features will be optional and they won't affect the gameplay. Which we assume means they'll be used for menu screens and the like. One of our readers, XboxInsomniac, had the wonderful idea of using Kinect for machinima videos - those oft-funny webisodes where game characters appear to be conversing instead of shooting each other. That would indeed be awesome.

Above: Back to complaining that we totally shot that guy a million times, yet one melee attack killed us dead

Of course, you could argue that this confirms that Kinect cannot work as a FPS control system. We'll have to wait for the inevitable on-rails Halo shoot-em-up for that.

21 Jun, 2011


  • Plan10FromOuterSpace - July 5, 2011 4:38 p.m.

    As reassured as I am by the news that I can play this without Kinect the very fact they are wasting time on writing it into the game is irritation enough, i suppose Microsoft will do anything to sell its new hardware, even if it means tainting its greatest FPS series...
  • DanAmrich - June 22, 2011 1:14 a.m.

    But what if they add something and I don't use it and it's good? Change is terrible and new ideas should never be allowed! Especially if I choose not to use them anyway!
  • garnsr - June 21, 2011 8:56 p.m.

    Does optional and not game affecting mean that it won't be used for anything in the actual game, or just that using it in the game will be optional, and you can still use a controller if you choose? I'd assume that's what they mean, not just that it will only be for menus or non gameplay elements.
  • lilspooky - June 21, 2011 6:48 p.m.

    With all this negative feedback over Kinect, I wonder, why include it at all. Seems like no one wants it.
  • Bobishungry - June 21, 2011 5:40 p.m.

    @BurntToShreds by applied in the correct way, i hope you aren't encouraging anyone to shove kinect into games like halo. If you mean that they should try and make a new 'hardcore' game designed for the kinect mechanics then i agree.
  • BurntToShreds - June 21, 2011 5:26 p.m.

    Keth, I have to agree. Fanning the flames is never good. The Kinect is an interesting piece of technology; it just has to be applied in the correct way, just like other developers have done with the Move and the Wii-mote.
  • bschroth - June 21, 2011 5:09 p.m.

    As long as Kinect is never a requirement, then it's probably being used in a fashion I wouldn't mind.
  • Charlie_Fubar - June 21, 2011 5:05 p.m.

    to all of you all without 150 dollars of disposable income... go to your gamestop and play child of eden for kinect... then shut up. That is all.
  • Imgema - June 21, 2011 4:40 p.m.

    With or without kinect this series is not for hardcore gamers. "Hardcore" gamers like to play more complicated games with depth, that require brains along with skills. Halo is just a dumb shooter that takes you by the hand and tell you where to go or shoot (the same applies to other pseudo-hardcore games like CoD, Killzone, Gears etc).
  • reson8er - June 21, 2011 4:19 p.m.

    So, essentially the placement of Kinect controls in Halo is there to let them label the box "Kinect Enabled" to draw in casuals to a FPS only to let them find out that Kinect is not supported at all with gameplay?
  • HaVoK308 - June 21, 2011 3:59 p.m.

    By the end of the year both Kinect and Move will be dead. Then they will find something else to force down our throats. Amazing how the standar controller has worked all these years with no problems. I find insane that in this day and age publishers still think that controller is a barrier of entry. As if adding Move to Bioshock or Kinect to Mass Effect will somehow cause the so-called casual gamer to buy those games. Beyond ridiculous and goes to show how disconnected Sony and Microsoft has become. Neither company has an idea what to do with either device. I predict by next E3 both will pretend their motion control never existed. I'm fine with that. Hopefully 3D will die with them and developers can get back to making games without wasting time and resources on gimmicks.
  • papergoon - June 21, 2011 1:39 p.m.

    @ElwoodFlore dude that kid was cute! Anyways great to know that the original gameplay wouldn't be affected. Definitely do not want to see some Kinect QTEs :/
  • Kethmach - June 21, 2011 1:38 p.m.

    The thing is- I'd say at least 70% of the people talking about it were saying "Yeah, It'll likely be menu stuff." Then you had 30% of the fanatical Sony Playslave/Anti-Kinect Elitist a-holes stirring up the waters on every site acting like BABIES about something that was labeled OPTIONAL from the very first quip! Then the stupid and flame bait article "7 ways Kinect will ruin Halo" just added more nonsense to the mix. And what is this idiots closing, flame bait shot? "Of course, you could argue that this confirms that Kinect cannot work as a FPS control system." Asshole much??
  • ElwoodFiore - June 21, 2011 1:33 p.m.

    Bill Gates: What is kinect? Major Nelson: Here give it a go! Bill Gates: WOW!! Motion controls.... Major Nelson: YEAH! Isn't it cool?!? Bill Gates: No... Not really LOL Kinect was a major waste marketing wise. They lied about the sales. I can tell you that. I have yet to have a friend that owns one. And thats a large list of friends. The only thing i seen about kinect is how fun a 4 year old chinese boy is hacing playing dance central. If i was his parents, Id say thanks microsoft, you turned my boy into a fag. ( Sorry i just speak my mind) :D
  • db1331 - June 21, 2011 1:24 p.m.

    They don't realize how stupid it looks to promote Kinect as the future of gaming and a genuine hardcore experience, only to come out and tell us "We know you guys don't want to use it. Relax, it's optional."
  • McNeelyJ - June 21, 2011 12:08 p.m.

    Kinect could be used for the theatre interface minority report style...otherwise I dont see the poimt
  • hester2 - June 21, 2011 12:02 p.m.

    That may be my favorite caption ever.
  • LTwitt3R - June 21, 2011 11:48 a.m.

    HALO on-rails shoot-em-up? That just sounds like a terrible Idea, I'd still buy it though!
  • Catw00d - June 21, 2011 11:38 a.m.

    Until developers figure out how to control chracter movement and aiming, Kinect's "you are the controller" technology inevitably dooms it's application to mini games and on rail shooters. Maybe buttons and joysticks were invented for a reason!
  • RicePuddingUK - June 21, 2011 11:36 a.m.

    If it doesn't affect gameplay and is reserved purely for menus and such there is absolutely no point in having it because I'm not going to put my controller down, stand up, navigate the menus with my hand motion then sit down and pick the controller up again when I can just push "A" jsut as easily. Kinect= Fail

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