Report – Natal scaled back to hit financial targets [UPDATE]

Thursday, 7th January 2010 12:14 GMT By Patrick Garratt


Update: Microsoft has declined to comment on whether or not the motion cam had one of its internal processor chips cut so it could implement a lower cost.

“Microsoft does not comment on rumor or speculation,” a spokesperson told CVG.

That’s that then.

Original: Microsoft’s dropped an internal Natal processor to cheapen the camera at retail, GI’s reporting, citing “development sources”.

The news tallies with rumours VG247′s heard in the past week.

Apparently the hardware change won’t have an effect on the motion system’s overall lag.

The load previously handled by the chip now falls on one of the machine’s other processors, but while taking a “percentage” of performance away from the system, most games don’t use up 100 percent of the available processing power anyway.

It was confirmed last night that Natal will release this year.

MCV reported last November that Natal will retail at a sub-£50 price-point.

The details came from a “behind-closed-doors Microsoft tour of UK publishers and studios,” with one source saying the camera could cost as little as £30.

There’ll apparently be 5 million launch units.



  1. Zarckan

    Awesome! :-D

    #1 5 years ago
  2. Patrick Garratt

    *says nothing*

    #2 5 years ago
  3. Quiiick

    AFAIK the 360 does not have 3 Xenon processors.
    It’s 1 Xenon processor with 3 cores.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. Psychotext

    Price seems right, and yeah, it’s one Xenon processor with three PPE cores.

    #4 5 years ago
  5. Patrick Garratt

    I’ve edited it.

    #5 5 years ago
  6. McLovin85

    It will definitely need to be sub £50 in order to tempt people into buying it. MS notoriously overprice their accessories so it’s good to hear they are aiming for that sort of price range.

    #6 5 years ago
  7. Hunam

    I still don’t know what to think. I’d love to get some hands on time to be honest and to just pick the brains of MS to see what they actually want to do with it.

    #7 5 years ago
  8. Blerk

    Now that the 360 has to handle the processing itself I’m guessing it’ll limit the amount of CPU you can dedicate to the game itself. That said, how much grunt do you need to do a ‘wash the car’ or ‘full body Pong’ game? :-)

    #8 5 years ago
  9. Eregol

    I wonder how many will create a female avatar and make her pose provocatively?

    #9 5 years ago
  10. Blerk

    A lot more now that you’ve suggested it, I’m suspecting. :-D

    #10 5 years ago
  11. pleasant_cabbage

    /raises hand

    “Ever wanted to see a female avatar present her lady bits to the world? BAM!”

    #11 5 years ago
  12. Quiiick

    I’m still skeptical about all this NATAL stuff.

    My guess is that the controls will not be precise enough. It will be fine for swiping through a list horizontally or vertically but any game which demands precise controls will not work properly.

    Honestly I have much more confidence in Sony’s “motion controller” in this respect.

    #12 5 years ago
  13. Eregol

    I doubt it’ll go as spasmatic as THAT E3 demonstration did though.

    What’s worrying is the amount of crotch grabbing and the like.

    And what will Natal pick up if you’re a naturist? Last thing you want is to be playing a Natal game online and see that the person you’re playing has extra joins inbetween their legs.

    EDIT: Maybe THAT’s why they removed the processor?

    #13 5 years ago
  14. sg1974

    According to Kotaku although it will only need on average 20% of the processor it has to reserve a whole core which means it will always take up 33% of the processor regardless of what it needs.

    #14 5 years ago

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