Microsoft recently announced the discontinuation of Kinect for Xbox One, the camera that was synonymous with the console at the start of the generation. But just because the peripheral is no longer being produced don’t mean developers have abandoned it. Studio Virtual Air Guitar has two Kinect-exclusive projects in the works, and it has no plans to drop support.
“Even though manufacturing has stopped, that doesn’t mean all the Kinect [units] out there have suddenly stopped existing,” said Virtual Air Guitar lead designer Aki Kanerva. “We continue to support Kinect, and we’ll keep making Kinect games for as long as enough people keep buying them.”
Right now, the two Xbox One systems being produced — the Xbox One S and the Xbox One X — don’t support Kinect by default. They require the use of a special adapter, and while this was initially available for free to those who owned an older Xbox, that deal has since ended. This means that anyone interested in getting an Xbox One and playing these games will have to either find an older model or purchase the adapter separately for $40.
The next Kinect game from Virtual Air Guitar will be Boom Ball 3, a ping-pong game featuring 50 levels and three difficulty settings; “normal,” “fast,” and “turbo.” The game also allows you to take a photo of “anything” with your Kinect and stick it on your in-game paddle. We can only hope players will use this tool as a force for good and not evil. It launches via ID@Xbox in December for $10.
Another project, titled Kinect Funhouse, will also release in spring 2018, though no details were provided on the game yet. One of the studio’s project from earlier this year was Air Guitar Warrior, a shoot-’em-up sidescrolling game which places you in the action with a variety of six-string axes to use as literal axes.
Though Virtual Air Guitar has carried the Kinect torch, Microsoft itself doesn’t seem too willing to support it in games anymore. While it was used in launch titles like Dead Rising 3, it’s now rare to see it used for anything other than voice recognition.
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