MS advises against "clutter" for Kinect

And noisy areas "on top of an Xbox".

Microsoft has warned that messy floors "with clothes all over the place" will prevent Kinect from working properly. Better have a quick tidy.

The company also advised against putting the sensor in "a noisy environment", using the examples "on top of your Xbox" and "on top of your subwoofer".

"We rely on the floor for a number of different parts of the technology," said Mark Plagge, Kinect's senior project manager, during a set-up video.

"You'll see when the sensor first boots up that it actually does this tilt down, and what it's doing is it's looking for the floor plane. Titles use the floor plane as a point of reference for the skeletons as they're moving throughout the title.

"The floor plane becomes very important, so if you have a very cluttered floor with clothes all over the place and we can't get a good look at the floor - it's a great thing if people can clean that up and move things out of the way."

The Kinect sensor should be placed in the horizontal middle of your telly at either the top or bottom. Exactly where will likely be bossed by the location of your telly's speakers, as having the sensor too close will mean audio interference.

"The other thing is that you want to put as much distance between you and the sensor as possible, so [placing the sensor] higher up actually tends to put an extra foot between you and the sensor," explained Tian Lim, director of Kinect development.

"The ideal play space starts about six feet away from the Kinect sensor. Some games will need you to move side to side quite a lot, so you'll want to know there are three-to-four feet on either side of you."

The requirements don't stop there. People with halogen spotlit rooms may encounter difficulties, as the Kinect sensor prefers an even light source throughout.

"To have really bright lighting in one spot and really dark lighting in another spot: as you move between the two you might actually look a bit different to the sensor, [and it will be] a little bit harder for us to keep track of you throughout the play space," said Kareem Choudhry, principal development manager on Kinect.

Don't panic if you can't remember that, as you'll be walked through each of the elements by on-screen Kinect setup tools.

The Kinect sensor launches on 10th November in the UK. Alone, it costs £130.

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Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer  |  Clert

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.


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