Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg • Page 2

Kinect vs. Move! Halo vs. COD! Etc. 

Eurogamer: I don't think my mum was ever going to buy a Steel Battalion controller. Even if it was a pound.

Aaron Greenberg: That's probably true. But I'm confident this title will sell more than its predecessor and Kinect is a big part of that. It'll be unique, it'll be different. How Inafune-san does it remains to be seen. I'll leave that to the creator to speak to that.

Eurogamer: Also launching rather soon is Call of Duty: Black Ops. Do you think it's going to outsell Halo: Reach?

Aaron Greenberg: What I can tell you is that I think Call of Duty is a fantastic title and I think Halo: Reach is a fantastic title. It's not apples to apples...

Eurogamer: It sort of is though, because they are both shooters. Like, Call of Duty is a Cox's Pippin and Halo: Reach is a Golden Delicious.

Aaron Greenberg: Yeah. But COD is multi-platform, and I think a more interesting comparison would be how they do on Xbox 360. I think it'll be very close.

We're really pleased Halo: Reach did $200 million on the first day - that's bigger than any entertainment launch this year, bigger than any movie. COD will do a big number like that, absolutely.

Eurogamer: Would you bet me a tenner that Halo: Reach will do better than COD on Xbox 360?

Aaron Greenberg: No. I don't, you know, I don't like to... Yeah. No.

Eurogamer: Michael Pachter has predicted you're going to charge publishers to make their games playable online...

Aaron Greenberg: Pach. Pach! I love Pach! The Pach Attack!

Eurogamer: Sitting there with his tea leaves and his headscarf, predicting the future...

Aaron Greenberg: Michael Pachter is obviously a great analyst and he's a fun and entertaining guy to listen to. I can't comment on his speculation about things like that. Just pure speculation, not grounded in any reality.

Eurogamer: What about Sony's rival technology, PlayStation Move? Can you describe what you think of it, without using the phrases "different offering", "we don't see it as direct competition" or "room in the marketplace for both"?

Aaron Greenberg: Well, it's really a very different offering which we don't see as direct competition, but there's room in the marketplace for both.

Eurogamer: That was a terrible effort. Achievement LOCKED.

Aaron Greenberg: Haha! Um... I think Move... Um... Is...

Eurogamer: See, it's hard isn't it?

Aaron Greenberg: No no, I'm not thinking about your words, I'm thinking about how to describe it. Here's what I think: Move is just a different approach to the market. We're thinking about Kinect as a key component to the platform, and what they've done with Move...

First off, it's a great product and the reviews seem to be pretty favourable. But they've targeted it purely to existing owners. They've said you can decide whether you want to play existing titles on the platform, like SOCOM, with the controller or with Move.

Our approach has been different. We're not going to take Halo, a game you love playing with the controller, and offer you the option to play it with a different interface which may or may not have been designed for that game. We want to build completely unique experiences from the ground up which are designed for Kinect. It's just a different approach.

I'm confident the commitment we're making to Kinect is on a par with the commitment we've made to Xbox Live. We have a significantly larger team and resources we're dedicating to Kinect. This is a big bet and it's a game changer. It's unique and different.

That said, for gamers who have a PS3 and like playing those games, it offers a different way to play - and some people will get pleasure out of that, absolutely.

Eurogamer: You did you use the word "different" several times there, but I'll let you off the hook for not using "competition" or "marketplace". When's the next Xbox coming out?

Aaron Greenberg: We think of Kinect as really the launch of the new platform and a new generation, in many ways. We have the sensor, we have a line-up of 15 new titles, we're investing in it as if it's a new launch.

What we're looking at now is how we can creatively bring variety and new ways to play. Kinect allows us to do that without having to launch an entirely new platform. So I think we're five years in and we safely feel like there's at least another five years left in this generation.

Aaron Greenberg is Chief of Staff for Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business. Kinect launches in the UK on 10th November.

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About the author

Ellie Gibson

Ellie Gibson

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Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.

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