Core Kinect Shooter?
Back when the Wii came out, I was excited by the prospect of a first-person shooter. The pointer device seemed almost perfectly crafted for use as a gun.
Of course, things didn't turn out so well on that front. In the years since, we've had exactly one great and one decent Wii FPS (Metroid Prime 3 and The Conduit, respectively), as well as a few ports (the Call of Duty titles) and some reasonably entertaining rail shooters (the Resident Evil and Dead Space games). Will Kinect have a better record when all is said and done?
It seems unlikely, given that when it comes to shooters, the Kinect's controller-free motion-sensing probably isn't as precise as the Wii's pointer. But Vancouver's Zipline Studios (a branch of Microsoft Game Studios) is reportedly giving it a shot: They've got a "hardcore" Kinect shooter in the making. There's no indication of whether this will be a Halo title (remember, Bungie severed its ties with the series with Reach), a new IP, or something else entirely.
Only time will tell whether this will make the Kinect something more than a way to convert your Xbox into a Wii. As always, I'm hoping for the best.
A Batman "Impostors" Game for XBLA?
There are plenty of indications that such a thing may soon exist: A rumor started several months ago, and now Warner Bros. has registered the domain names BatmanImpostors.com, BatmanRedHoods.com, and BatmanHushGame.com.
This isn't proof, of course, but I personally wouldn't mind seeing the Arkham Asylum stealth formula being scaled down in the manner of Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light.
The Sony Plot Thickens
As PSN remains in limbo, Sony's stock has fallen six percent, and rumors swirl as to who's responsible for the outage (the hacker group "Anonymous" is often whispered about, but has denied involvement), at least one person is taking action. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has asked Sony to gather information about the attack and the compromised data, in particular the nearly week-long gap between the data breach and Sony's decision to inform its customers about it.
Personally, I wouldn't mind if law enforcement laid off until Sony at least had PSN running again; any distraction from that task just hurts everyone. However, if the company violated any laws, it should be held accountable.
Side note: Some details of Sony's "make good" package have become available. Everyone will get a free month of PlayStation Plus service that includes Qriocity music, plus a day of network service for every day the network was down. Given the consumer data the company lost and the trust they need to rebuild, I think they can do better.
Government Money for Game Companies?
I hate to get all political (and I'll repeat the standard disclaimer that these are my views, not Cheat Code Central's), but why is Massachusetts joining the contest to see who can offer game developers the biggest possible tax breaks? Under a bill currently under consideration by the state's legislature, game developers could earn up to $75,000 a year in credits—including one for stamping their games with what's essentially a "Made in Massachusetts" logo.
I love games and hate taxes as much as anyone, but the government should not treat a game company any differently than it treats another business of a similar size and revenue. Alliantgroup, which dubs itself "the nation's premier provider of specialty tax services," claims that there are already sixteen "game-friendly" states. Perhaps they should be more concerned about states that treat all businesses equally.