Kotick To Declare War on British Game Development?
In response to the Coalition Government's retraction of gaming tax break legislation, Activision Force of Darkness head honcho Bobby Kotick has issued an ultimatum: Tax Breaks or Die! Or words to that effect.
“For us to continue to invest in the UK there needs to be an incentive provided for us to do so,” he said. “The talent pool in the UK is among the best in the world for what we do. But we really need to see some more incentives."
Kotick went on to strongly hint that Canada, Singapore and the Eastern Bloc countries offer similar incentives... and considering that Activision owns Bizarre Creations and FreeStyleGames, they're technically in a position to bargain. However, since we've been revealed to be a gaming nation at heart, this is almost certainly a negotiation gambit rather than a genuine threat. On one hand: this is pretty low from a man who, by all rights, ought to be cultivating ever last shred of positive public image he can. On the other, the removal of gaming tax breaks from the government's agenda is a controversial issue that may damage our tech markets and economy and markets. [Financial Times]
Is Kotick a money-grabbing devil or a champion of Bristish Developers' Financial Rights? What side are you on?
Molyneux Defends Milo Tech; Reveals Episodic Fable III Release
Yesterday brought us the (fairly predictable) news that 'virtual children' Milo and Kate will be a tech demo for a larger game experieice rather than a game in their own right- but Peter Molyneux has taken the time to defend the technology as well as deliver a few choice words to Aaron Greenberg.
“All that technology that we showed at E3 last year actually does work. Milo has been a really hard thing to do and a really hard thing to describe. Poor Aaron Greenberg – he’s on the PR team, he hasn’t seen it since last year, so he came up with this stock answer that Milo is alive and well and living in Guildford but it’s still a tech demo.”
So there, Aaron. We'll fill you in on all the Milo updates after Molyneux's TEDGlobal talk next month. [VG247]
In other news, Molyneux also revealed that Fable III will be available in bite-sized downloadable episodic chunks from Xbox Live Marketplace.
Kinect Specs Revealed...Only Two Active Players?
Play.com has revealed Kinect's Technical Specifications- and for your delectation (especially for any tech fanatics out there), we've published the full details below. Many of these specifications won't come as a surprise to anyone, but there are a couple of interesting and worrying points that I'd like to shine some light on (in red).
- Colour and depth-sensing lenses
- Voice microphone array
- Tilt motor for sensor adjustment
- Fully compatible with existing Xbox 360 consoles
- Field of View
- Horizontal field of view: 57 degrees
- Vertical field of view: 43 degrees
- Physical tilt range: ± 27 degrees
- Depth sensor range: 1.2m - 3.5m
- Data Streams
- 320x240 16-bit depth @ 30 frames/sec
- 640x480 32-bit colour @ 30 frames/sec
- 16-bit audio @ 16 kHz
- Skeletal Tracking System
- Tracks up to 6 people, including 2 active players
- Tracks 20 joints per active player
- Ability to map active players to LIVE Avatars
So, where to start? Whilst the field of view seems a little too narrow for my liking, the eye is instantly drawn to the respective resolutions of the two cameras. 640x480 seems to be a ludicrously low resolution for a c. £120 piece of kit- especially considering that you could easily pick up two VGA webcams of the same resolution with change from £30.
Perhaps more vexingly, however, the specs indicate that only 2 active players can be supported at once... with 4 inactive players waiting in the wings. We assume that this means that 6 players can compete in a tournament with 2 players competiting head-to-head at any one time... but considering that the Wii supports up to 4 players at once, this could be a seriously tough sell. [Play.com via Kotaku]
Spotted something that we've missed? Still psyched for Kinect? Drop us a line in the comments!