British Retailers Clamour For Sub-£100 Kinect Price
As we recently reported, Microsoft are apparently in the throes of a massive internal argument over Kinect's price point due to its enormous manufacturing cost. Whilst Microsoft are almost certainly set to launch at a $150 level, a number of British retailers simply don't believe that they can shift the peripheral at anything over £100... and are clamouring for a price drop.
HMV’s Tim Ellis and Morrison's Nick Sultanti have told MCV that Kinect simply can't garner mass market appeal at its current rumoured price point, especially since Microsoft's bewildering marketing strategy is aimed at the casual market (and that Move will be debuting at a sub-100 level for single controller/subcontroller bundle).
“Sub-£100 and Kinect will benefit immensely. People are going to compare price points between Move and Kinect, and it would be fairly detrimental if there is a major price discrepancy in favour of Move.”
ShopTo, one of our regularly-featured dealmongers, has also spoken out against the $150 price. Igor Cipolletta believes that a lower price would create a larger install base and greater earning potential for Kinect-enabled games in the future.
“Predictions of Kinect price being over £79.99 will do little to engender early adopters and thus affect unit sales in the short to medium term.”
It's clear that Microsoft have a real dilemma on their hands. Personally, I feel that a £79.99 price point with a bundled demo disc and Live trial would make for an attractive launch package... because you can pick up a Wii for around £120 these days. [MCV]
Iwata: Sales Slump due to Boring Games
Whilst videogames are still very much a growth industry, there's no doubt that sales suffered a significant slump during the last couple of years. Some blame the global recession, others point fingers at the rise of the casual gaming scene... and of course, many companies love to blame piracy and teh hax0rz for their 'declining' profits. However, Nintendo boss Satoru Iwata has a different reason for the sales slump: in his opinion, developers are failing to innovate In short, we're not buying games because we're bored.
"My belief is we should not blame the bad economy for the cause of slow sales of video games. The slow sales must be due to the lack of great software that everyone wants to buy. This is not the problem of Nintendo alone, but the entire video game industry. Something that is really fresh can make our industry grow." - Satoru Iwata
He also stressed the relative importance of innovative gameplay over graphical power, suggesting that we gamers have become disenchanted with shiny, samey shooters and hack 'n' slash titles. Well, he would say that, wouldn't he. [Venture Beat]
Studio Ghibli's Ni no Kuni Trailered; Looks Beautiful
Studio Ghibli, the reknowned Japanese animation worshop behind Spirited Away and Howl's Moving Castle, has spilled the beans about their upcoming PS3-exclsuive RPG. Ni no Kuni appears to be very similar to Spirited Away in both spirit, tone and themes,focusing on the tragic story of a 13 year old boy who travels to another world in an attempt to revive his decesed mother. Powerful stuff.
Speaking of powerful, Studio Ghibli will be basing the game's art style on their animation... and it's looking absolutely incredible. The new trailer essentially looks like a charming and detailed anime film brought to interactive life. Some games are graphically impressive... but Ni no Kuni is set to look genuinely beautiful. Look out for a comparison between Ghibli's traditional stunning animation and the realtime PS3 grahics around 40 seconds in. Impressive, no?
Ni no Kuni will be compatible with Playstation Move and is set for an early 2011 launch. [via Kotaku]