In Insert Coin, we look at an exciting new tech project that requires funding before it can hit production. If you’d like to pitch a project, please send us a tip with “Insert Coin” as the subject line.
We won’t lie: this might be the ultimate Insert Coin. It’s not often that you get the author of Snow Crash and Cryptonomicon asking for Kickstarter funding, after all. Neal Stephenson and Subutai Corporation are tired of swordfighting in video games being reduced to abstract button presses, and they want to produce both a video game and a control system that will replicate what it’s really like to fight steel-to-steel, complete with pommel hits, blocks and distinct techniques. The initial game, Clang, will focus on two-handed longsword dueling with an “off-the-shelf” controller to get out the door quickly. In the long run, however, the plan is to work on custom controllers, and the project will involve an open framework known as MASE (Martial Arts System Embodiments) that will let anyone build their own fighting game. You could create a realistic Wushu simulator… or an extremely detailed Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles beat-em-up.
Any pledge will help the cause, but if you’d like a credit in the game or an actual copy, you’ll want to spend a respective $ 10 or $ 25. The rewards escalate quickly after that: $ 50 and $ 75 pledges first give downloadable concept art and later a digital fighting manual, while $ 100, $ 150 and $ 250 donations will add a very real t-shirt, a hard copy of the manual, a signed poster with a patch and eventually a signed poster. Are you a high roller? Spending $ 500 or $ 1,000 adds a signed manual as well as either the first book or whole collection of the related The Mongoliad trilogy, plus (at the higher tier) invitations to Subutai parties in Seattle. Pledges at $ 5,000 will supply the actual concept art; at the peak $ 10,000, you’ll get a real longsword, lunch with Subutai and a tour of the offices. If you’re game in the literal sense of the word, you’ll have until mid-day on July 9th to help Neal reach the lofty $ 500,000 funding target.
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Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) announced that it will roll out the Kinect for Xbox 360 in North America beginning on November 4, and other places thereafter. “Xbox LIVE is about making it simple to find the entertainment you want, with the friends you care about, wherever you are. Kinect is about making that experience more natural and engaging than ever before,” said Marc Whitten, corporate vice president of Xbox LIVE at Microsoft. “Once you experience your movies, music, sports and games with Xbox LIVE and Kinect, you won’t ever want to go back.” The Kinect is controller free and is motion-controlled. It allows you to do things such as play movies instantly by saying “Xbox, play,” or browse music libraries with a wave of your hand, as well as other features. The company did not announce a price for the system but mentioned 15 game titles that are designed for the system and will be available at the time of the launch. Microsoft shares are currently trading 0.51% lower at $25.53.Related Posts:
Not a headline I was expecting to write today. A program at the University Of Central Florida is putting together a video game aimed at promoting abstinence among middle-school-age girls. It utilizes a full-body motion-capture studio to put girls in situations where they need to reject their pawing suitors. Right. Well. Couple things.
I’m not going to object to using public money to promote abstinence — it’s useless, I feel, but a variety of approaches is surely justified in efforts to keep teen pregnancy rates down. My problem is that they’re spending so much — $434,000! — on a program that will not work, because A: the game looks really weird and B: middle school girls aren’t going to go for it.
I mean really, a full-body motion capture studio? Who approved this budget? Did they not consider working with an existing studio to produce a game for the Kinect?
As Conrad points out at Destructoid, that kind of money would hire a couple extra teachers, maybe people with counseling credentials, people who could do an entire class on issues like this or be available every day to help kids deal with their problems.
Anyway, if they really want an abstinence simulator, they could just put a camera helmet on me and have kids watch the 24-hour feed. Instruction and warning all in one!
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