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MS: Batman AA 3D a "science experiment"

"I don't need to sell you a TV," Spencer says.

Microsoft Game Studios' Phil Spencer reckons Sony has backed the wrong horse with 3D. But then, Sony has pressure to sell televisions whereas Microsoft doesn't.

"We're trying to do things that millions of people can go enjoy today. And for better or for worse, people just don't really have TVs in their house right now that are going to do 3D in a way that's going to work," Microsoft Game Studios' corporate vice president Spencer told CNN.

"As a corporate mandate, I don't need to sell you a new TV. That's not part of my business model," he said.

"Other companies maybe have that part of their business model. I don't."

And it's not just the television: Spencer questioned the pricey 3D glasses and the alienating effect they have on spectators.

"A bunch of people sitting around the living room wearing $150 glasses," he mulled, "I'm just not sure that's mainstream today.

"Trying to get a bunch of people playing together in a room where not everybody sees the same thing ... is a weird disconnect to me."

There are games on Xbox 360 that support stereoscopic 3D. Batman: Arkham Asylum is one of them. So what did Spencer think about it? "It felt a little more like a science experiment than something that's going to go touch millions of people."

Nevertheless, Microsoft "clearly" won't ignore the technology, as "it is something that will play a role in entertainment".

Meanwhile, Sony aggressively backs 3D as the future of gaming, forcing its inclusion in big first-party PS3 exclusives Gran Turismo 5, MotorStorm: Apocalypse and LittleBigPlanet 2. Those two racing games were demonstrated in 3D at the Eurogamer Expo 2010 earlier this month in London. Were you there? Did you play them?

Nintendo is also employing 3D technology for the 3DS. "I like the 3DS," Spencer said, because "you don't have to wear the glasses".

The 3DS is due to launch here in March 2011. Eurogamer's Digital Foundry blog explored the leaked 3DS tech specs last month.

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Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

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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