If you click on a link and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. Read our editorial policy.

Why Kinect Sports is Rare's priority

And first-person shooters aren't.

Rare boss Scott Henson has explained why the Microsoft-owned UK developer is squarely focused on the Kinect Sports franchise and not hardcore genres such as first-person shooters.

Speaking to Eurogamer in an interview at the Develop conference in Brighton this week, Henson described some of the genres often linked to the Microsoft-owned UK developer as "limiting".

"It's interesting when people ask questions like, well, will you do this kind of game or that kind of game?" he said.

"Some of those things I find limiting in terms of what the experience is. If you go talk to just an average person about what we've done with Kinect Sports, honestly, it's magic to them.

"They cannot get their head around the idea they're moving and then there's an avatar on the screen doing the exact same thing. Just that simple thing. And then turn it into a sport and a whole bunch of activities with skill ranges and refined movement and big movements, it's an incredible thing.

"Hopefully people get as excited about that as we do. We know there are millions of customers out there that are getting excited about it."

Kinect Sports has sold over three million copies since its launch alongside Kinect in November last year. A sequel, Kinect Sports: Season Two, is due out later this year.

But despite the success of Kinect and Kinect Sports, Rare is often asked when it will dip into its rich back catalogue of games.

"When I get questions like that, hopefully people get the sense that what really excites me is what we're doing now and how we're driving and leading innovation," Henson countered.

Henson also said the sheer popularity of sports, and in particular football, validates Rare's decision.

"[Sports] has got to be one of the most accessible and evergreen categories in entertainment. You could make the definitive statement it's the most accessible category in entertainment.

"If you think about the number of people that engage in sports, it's the majority of the planet.

"The Premier League has two billion people who in some way, shape or form tune in. So then you have two billion people who have a general notion of what football is. That's a pretty cool basis to start an experience on.

"That fuels and motivates us as well."

In March this year images of the cancelled game that began as Perfect Dark 2 emerged.

Perfect Dark Core was to feature a more moody Joanna Dark than the one depicted in Perfect Dark and Perfect Dark Zero.

Before it was cancelled in 2009, the player controlled a male character. The game was still an action first-person shooter, but had mechs.

Xbox 360 game Perfect Dark Zero launched in 2005 to a 7/10 Eurogamer review. The original was remade for Xbox Live Arcade last year.

Henson told us he doesn't get sick of being asked when Rare will once again make a hardcore game.

"No, I don't get sick of it at all. One of the great things about Rare is it's got this great heritage and history people have passion around. I grew up on Rare games.

"I don't get sick of it. I would like for people to really understand our future is bolstered by the history we have, but we're buoyed by the innovation that's ahead of us."

Asked whether Rare may create a FPS with Kinect elements, perhaps for a Perfect Dark sequel, Henson said, from a technical point of view, "there is no reason why it can't be done".

"I've seen plenty of experiences that it can be done."

But, "For Rare's part, there is a huge opportunity for the studio and for experiences and for the audience for us to continue to raise the bar with sports.

"That's where our focus is, and that's what we're going to continue to push on. There is a massive opportunity there, not just for Season Two, but even further, for us to continue to push the boundaries around that."

Topics in this article

Follow topics and we'll email you when we publish something new about them.  Manage your notification settings.

About the Author
Wesley Yin-Poole avatar

Wesley Yin-Poole


Wesley likes news, interviews, and more news. He also likes Street Fighter more than anyone can get him to shut up about it.

Eurogamer.net logo

Buy things with globes on them

And other lovely Eurogamer merch in our official store!

Explore our store
Eurogamer.net Merch