Interviews// Epic's VP, Mark Rein, Part 1

Posted 9 Jul 2010 17:21 by
Gears of War 3
Gears of War 3
SPOnG: There's a perception among some people that nothing shown on Kinect so far really does anything massively different to what's on the Wii. It does it in a different way, of course, but it's a lot of the same game types. Have you seen anything, on your technology or otherwise, that really pushes things forward with either Kinect or Move?

Mark Rein: I think you just have to go to the stuff Microsoft showed at the Kinect event - there's very different experiences from what you can do on the Wii. I mean, Dance Central was phenomenal. I know my daughters will be playing that over and over and over again. So, that's an easy purchase for me - to buy Kinect to play Dance Central. I thought Ubisoft's Your Shape game was phenomenal, and you can't do that on the Wii. Thats not the kind of game you can do there. And I actually thought, 'that's a really really smart exercise game', because a lot of exercise is about body weight positioning and doing the right crouch. There's lots of stuff you can do just with your own body weight or just with small weights that totally works in that game. That was a total game changer for me. I thought that was very cool.

Gears of War 3
Gears of War 3
I thought the Kinect Adventures game - that one does use our tech - that's an experience that you're using your whole body. It's cool! It's good exercise, too. For fat guys like me this is a good thing. [Grins].

And Move had many unique experiences too! I thought the precision of that wand game, Sorcery - again, uses our tech but I don't just want to concentrate on that - I thought that was pretty spectacular. I thought that worked really well. That's exactly the kind of game that I know my son and daughters are going to want to wave the wand around and make spells happen. And yeah, you could similar games on the Wii, and there were Harry Potter games and stuff like that, but the fact is that Sony's version of it is just very precise. It's like holding a paintbrush and seeing the paint extend to the end of the screen. That's brilliant. And people will do really cool stuff with that.

SPOnG: That made a lot of sense of the ball on the end, when it changed colour as they drank the potion (in the E3 demo).

Gears of War 3
Gears of War 3
Mark Rein: Actually, did you see the little gun attachment they have for Move? That's brilliant. I always like those light gun games, so I think Move will just be the best light gun game implementation ever. Because you have the two controllers - you have your navigation controller and you shoot your gun. I thought making the gun like that was brilliant.

And the truth is Microsoft could easily co-opt that experience, because they can make a gun that the camera can see just as well and they can put a light on for when you're pressing the trigger, or have a wireless extra controller. I thought the idea of making a gun like that was pretty smart.

SPOnG: You said back in March that it was too early to say whether Bulletstorm or Gears 3 will incorporate Move or Kinect. Is it still too early to say?

Mark Rein: I'm not really even the right person to say it, because I'm not the designer of either of those games, but I don't think those games are incorporating those technologies. I don't know if they'll change that or not, but I think those continue to be core controller experience games.

Gears of War 3
Gears of War 3
And both of them are coming out very early in the life cycle of Move and Kinect, so I don't think by February and April of 2011 we're going to have a clear picture of the install base and who the customers are that have Move and Kinect yet. I think we're going to need a couple more months after that. And those games, to meet those dates, have to be finished well before then.

SPOnG: Do you think that there are a lot of developers and publishers that are taking a 'wait and see' approach to Move and Kinect?

Mark Rein: Probably, but there was certainly no shortage of Move and Kinect games on show at E3, so they certainly have lots of great games. And I think the first-party games on both systems are outstanding.

Be sure to check back tomorrow for Part 2!
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