Microsoft aims to make its motion-sensing peripheral a global holiday hit, announcing today that it will bring Kinect across the Atlantic Ocean less than a week after it hits store shelves in the US.
It’s a move that goes against the grain of traditional game hardware launches, which typically don’t make it to Europe until several months after they first hit the US. It’s a system that has been in place across the industry for years as a way to optimize region-specific distribution and resources.
Apparently Microsoft is really kicking up the gears over at the Kinect production factory, though. November 10 is just five days after the scheduled November 5 launch date in the US.
In the UK, Kinect will retail for around 150 euros, roughly the equivalent of just under $200. The US, meanwhile, will get the standard Kinect controller for $150, which many are already saying is too expensive. That’s nearly the price of an entire Wii console, and almost three times as expensive as the competing Playstation Move controller Sony is launching next month.
Many third-party game developers have said in interviews that they view the Kinect, Wii, and Move as identical properties and plan to develop cross-platform games for all three. Few have seen any specific value in any one of the three motion controllers.
Microsoft’s UK announcement came at the kicking off of the Gamescom show, one of the biggest annual trade shows for the video game industry in Europe.