Microsoft -- Hardware
In stores: 11/04/10 (Xbox 360)

Look mom, no hands! Or better yet, all hands … and feet … and everything else. The moment is finally here. Microsoft has unleashed Kinect upon the world, the revolutionary new gaming element that allows you to step into the action without a controller. Before long, Nexus wannabes might be saying, "You're either Kinect-us or you're … stuck using a controller."

High Spots:

  • Kinect truly sets you free. With no controller or wand in your way, you can use your entire body and voice to interface with the gaming experience like never before. Its controller-free camera incorporates your movements and projects your Xbox avatar into the game itself. (Though note: Microsoft can't come up with a way to stop you from destroying every piece of furniture in the vicinity …)

  • Microsoft is reportedly spending $500 million dollars in marketing Kinect this holiday season - on consumer products, television, print media as well as the Internet. Heck, we wouldn't be surprised to see Bill Gates appearing on Monday Night Raw in the neat future!

  • Kinect goes beyond gaming. With one move of the hand or a simple utterance, you can enjoy movies, music and sports as well. Essentially, Kinect makes you a human remote control -- and chances are you'll never lose yourself under the couch.

Hard Bumps:

  • Despite its advantages, there's no way around it, you are going to have to get off the couch! All those extra hours that you might otherwise spend in an Undertaker-like "vegetative state," packing on pound after pound while your controller does all the work, are in serious jeopardy. In that respect, Kinect sets gaming back to … well, all the way to the bowling alley.

  • We hope that Kinect has fixed its previously reported problems with being able to register darker tones. If not, Goth gamers may be forced into wearing lighter shades, not excluding amber, aquamarine, and even mauve. Now that's depressing.

  • A real concern arises in whether or not third-part games that are established franchises can work in the Kinect universe. Will games like Call of Duty, Madden and SD vs. Raw have the same shortcomings when they are translated to this new world?

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