Project Natal: How soon is now?

This is a topic, I’ve been wanting to write about since a long time. But after our latest case study for the Media Management course (“Electronic Arts: The Blockbuster Strategy”) and today’s guest lecture by Gustav Enekull – Marketing Manager  at DICE – I have given it a little more thought. As Mr. Enekull mentioned earlier today, not only the industry as a whole but also the individual companies, such as EA, have changed dramatically in the way they conceive – and probably influence- customers’ needs and develop their product offerings. One of the most interesting facts he mentioned is the remarkable paradox of dichotomy in successful games. Whereas super expensive blockbuster productions (see FIFA, Battlefield, The Sims etc.) sell millions of copies as they get more and more sequels; easy,casual games with primitive graphics, such as ‘Red Ball‘, climb also on the top of the popularity ladder for gamers.

The latest invention in that sector bears the mysterious name: “Project Natal”. Although it sounds unrealistic, considering there have only been 3 years since the release of the Wii, it seems that the high tech industry doesn’t know any limits when it comes to creativity. Something tells me that the science fiction future we saw in movies when we were kids is not as far as we thought. Project Natal developed by Microsoft for the Xbox 360 console is here to prove this “imaginary” future world is not a fantasy but a possible actuality.

Here you can hear Mr. Molyneux explain what exactly Natal is and what it can do for you:

What will the effect of this revolutionary technology be on the way we consume entertainment, not to mention the way we communicate in general? One should also consider the dimensions it can take concerning business communication. Natal can make virtual meetings even easier. And to tie it to the yet another topic of our Media course: will virtual worlds like Second Life survive the threat of Natal in the long run?

I guess we’ll have to wait until Christmas to find out..

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About Eleni Miliou

Born in Greece, bachelor-studied in Germany and master-studying in Sweden. Young business enthusiast with a soft spot for all things marketing, music and traveling. Busy with administering this very blog, socializing in Stockholm, organizing CEMS events and enjoying student life. Currently in action in Sydney, down under!
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5 Responses to Project Natal: How soon is now?

  1. Vanessa says:

    I know… I saw this last year. Incredible and scary all at the same time.

  2. Pipina says:

    It is very interesting and terrifying, but I want to believe that someone will use this only for fun!

  3. Jan says:

    To be honest, I believe Microsoft’s pricing of Natal to be a bit too elevated for it to be their “next big thing”. I believe this year to rather be more Sony-centric, with their motion controller coming out in september which is more geared toward core gamer audiences. It provides a familiar interface, and gives a tactile feel when compared to the more “ghostly” Natal. Pretending that you’re holding something is a lot more abstract and difficult to control than when pretending something you’re actually holding is something else. Don’t disregard tactile sensory feedback as one of the key factors of immersion.

    (Imagine playing that Natal racing game with your friends… Who would volunteer to be the pit-stop mechanic?)

    /The lecturer not mentioned above 🙂

  4. Pingback: The kitchen of the future « SSE 4M

  5. Sofia says:

    I’m aware of since last year… amazing isn’t it??

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