80% Publishers Readying for Natal

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Microsoft has revealed that up to 80% of publishers are already signed and on board for its upcoming motion control system, codenamed Project Natal.

According to Microsoft’s Robbie Bach, president of the company’s entertainment and devices division, it’s working hard to ensure solid uptake for Natal among those who will actually be releasing games for the device. Bach went into some detail when he was speaking to CBC News during this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) when he explained that,

“Part of the reason we showed Natal at E3 – which is actually a bit risky to be honest because it’s a new technology, very cutting edge and relatively early in its development- is that we wanted third-party publishers to know that it was real and we wanted them to have developer kits and to get them working on it.”

It’s interesting stuff, especially when Bach gets into the figures that Microsoft has managed to attract to its motion control platform, with Bach indicating that the figure for publishers already signed up to work with Natal is somewhere between 70% and 80%. Still, Bach stresses that there will be first party games made available for the new platform, stating that, “We want to have a few titles from Microsoft that show the way and then we want the breadth and power of the ecosystem from our partners to bring lots of new ideas, new innovations, new concepts to the market.”

It’s certainly a curious arrangement, but if Microsoft has managed to attract real support to its motion-sensitive platform then we can certainly see them doing very well out of Natal in the long-run, particularly if publishers do find that they’re making the kind of money out of it that Microsoft seems to imply that they could.

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3 Responses to “80% Publishers Readying for Natal”

  1. Kevin Says:

    I recall seeing big figures for the developer studios who took devkits for eyetoy too, and we’ve seen few games, if any, outside of Sony itself. Bar the GT5 headtrack software no one’s really pushing it’s capabilities. I imagine Natal will be the same. First parties will use it, a bit, everyone else won’t bother.

    Keep in mind we also don’t know what it does yet since they announced the removal of a dedicated Natal chip, effectively gimping the system!

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