Penello on Kinect: We don’t want “shovelware”

Sunday, 27th June 2010 11:35 GMT By Joe Anderson


Albert Penello, director of platform marketing for Xbox, has said Microsoft doesn’t want Kinect games to be “shovelware.”

Speaking in an interview with Gamasutra, Penello said he wants the consumer to be given an original experience, as opposed to something tacked on.

“This industry thrives on being able to take an engine or game and put it on as many platforms as possible,” he said.

“We don’t want shovelware, we don’t want ports, we don’t want stuff with motion controls tacked onto it.

“That’s not a slam to our competitors. We wanted original games that were really taking advantage of what our technology does.”

Penello added that although Kinect may have less games than Sony and Nintendo to begin with, he believes originality will make the 360 titles stand out.

“I know we’re going to have less games for [Kinect] than our competitors, but I think each one of those [games] is doing something interesting,” he said. “Our system works differently and has different advantages than the wand, quite frankly.

“To me it’s way more important to have a handful of really good game titles that take advantage of the tech than 40 titles of which half of them are controller games with waggle added onto them.”

Penello added for some games, such as Halo, controllers are where it’s at.

“We continue to say that the controller is the best experience for controller games. When people say, ‘Why don’t you have Halo?’ Well, I don’t want Halo on Kinect. I want Halo on a controller,” he said.

“Would it be interesting to see what kind of game they could make using Kinect? Yeah, I would love to see what those guys could do, or what the Call of Duty guys could do. But I don’t want to play Call of Duty 4; I want Call of Duty: Black Ops on the controller.”

Microsoft announced Kinect at its recent E3 conference for release in November this year.



  1. Robo_1

    It’s all very well talking about original experiences, and I’m hopeful that there will indeed be a good few original titles released for Kinect, but if you look at the launch list of 24 titles (, you’ve got six sports games, four fitness titles and three dance games already.

    Amongst notable exceptions such as Child of Eden, Fable 3 and Forza the rest of the titles featured are mostly mini game collections or party titles.

    #1 5 years ago
  2. frostquake

    So because you have a game that looks like a Wii game, but because your hands are the controller, it isn’t Shovelware…Um Like yeah it is…Almost all the Games, were copy cats and just Really Really Pretty Shovelware…Meow!

    Any Bets on how Long it takes EA to release a PETZ game on the Kinky???

    #2 5 years ago
  3. NiceFellow

    Has he actually looked at the games shown so far for Kinect?

    The only one that doesn’t look like sub-Wii shovelware is the Dance title… the rest… new experiences? They’re obvious rip-offs that wouldn’t exist if Nintendo hadn’t shown how to make games like them.

    Still, a guess PR is all and MS want to convince us Kinect is something it isn’t – at least yet. Show me something really innovative then fine – but they haven’t yet.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. Gama_888

    im really quite intrigued to see how kinect does tbh.
    i can see it being a landslide in either way.
    massive fail, or massive hit.
    only time will tell

    but oh lawd M$ are skrewed if it flops

    #4 5 years ago
  5. Gekidami

    But none of those games are doing anything interesting, they’re all just stuff we’ve already seen on Wii and most people call shovelware.

    It does show MS’ view on Kinect is very different to that of Sony’s with Move though; Whilst Sony want Move to be an extra pad useable with as many games as possible, MS want Kinect to be a platform with its own games.

    #5 5 years ago
  6. McLovin85

    Well he’s already failed that objective then….

    #6 5 years ago
  7. Demiath

    You may not want it, mr Penello, but you sure as hell is going to get it…

    #7 5 years ago
  8. Freek

    He hasn’t seen anything comming out of E3 then?

    #8 5 years ago
  9. LordCancer

    i want a game about shoveling shit on kinect. ill hold an imaginary shovel and shovel piles of broken xbox 360s in to a trash heap. fun for everyone!

    #9 5 years ago
  10. hitnrun

    In other news, Kaz Hirai has released a statement expressing Sony’s desire for the PS3 to be inexpensive on its launch day.

    #10 5 years ago
  11. ivycrew707

    One thing Nintendo did and Sony is at least headed in a good direction is aim at its core audience. Even if Sony do follow with some of the more Wii like games, its still making something for its heavier audience. MS hasent shown any games I don’t think aimed at the people who support them most. I know you want attract other age groups, but you cant forget what got you where u are. Sounds like he’s telling that it wont be able to do halos and cod

    #11 5 years ago
  12. Holesome

    I think Penello is right but what he wants and what he will get are two different things, initially at least.

    New IPs, especially for Kinect, are harder to find and will take lots of time to produce (ie. Kate & Milo). Unfortunately there has not been enough hands on time with Kinect for the developers and this would be a contributing factor to why we have not seen much yet. Those companies that are working on new ideas are sure as hell not going to say much ahead of time until they have almost completed their projects. On top of that it’s likely hard to determine what methods and control schemes will be best likely changing often and in significant enough ways that showing anything in advance would be of little value.

    I suspect that the flow of new AND REALLY EXCITING games for Kinect will not start to become available until the new year or until mid next year (E3 2011). A bit depressing but understandable in my eyes.

    For this launch of Kinect I think base game packs were needed that could quickly be produced with an extreme focus on the best and most likely target market of people to buy into this device INITIALLY. On top of this they could try and represent games that could be compared to and hopefully be shown as superior so that the casual buyer feels like there is value in making the choice to buy one over another.

    Sure must be a hell of a job for some person(s) at MS to try to crunch numbers to produce a plan for success for Kinect knowing the amount of flack that would be thrown back at them.

    For non-MS developers the first set of games need to NOT be a high risk venture as there they are selling into a zero base so tried and true franchises that can more easily be produced with a lower cost and development cycle will always be the first to hit the market.

    Perhaps we will see more exciting announcements for core complex gamers at the next game conference coming up?

    Have some patients and give it time.

    #12 5 years ago
  13. Komond_Deckard

    So Halo is a controller game? Really? A FPS is best played in a controller? Wow… Of course Kinect is not for Halo, but that doesn’t mean controllers are the best way for everything is not Kinect.

    #13 5 years ago
  14. deanimate

    I will be very surprised if most games for kinect are not shovelware. Plus even those that are not shovelware will still, mainly, be complete crap.

    #14 5 years ago
  15. CenoBit

    Right. Cause I’m guessing Reggis actually wanted most Wii games to be shovelware.

    #15 5 years ago
  16. Mr Tom

    Don’t want shovelware? Well tough luck – that’s what you’re getting.

    #16 5 years ago
  17. Blerk

    No, no. It’s not shovelware at all. It’s something completely new.

    Spadeware, it’s called. It’s really very different!

    #17 5 years ago

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