First, a potential release date for Project Creeper. (Yes, I changed the nickname – it’s my nickname for it, I can do that.) Jonathan Ross of Friday Nights with Jonathan Ross tested out Creeper and the Xbox with one of the sport game demos from last year’s E3. He later updated his twitter with a message that basically said, I’m paraphrasing here, “Natal is impressive, not quite there yet, but they have until October to get it right.”
We already know Microsoft was advertising a Holiday 2010 release date, and this falls in line with that information.
Now, for the price?
Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter says Natal will retail for $50 in the US. That’s a guess, mind you. After speaking with his hardware specialist colleagues at Wedbush, he came up with the figure.
In his show he said:
“I’d be very surprised if the thing is more then $79, and I really think it’s going to be $50. Microsoft’s not trying to make money on the device, trying to get everybody to have the device so that they can sell us other things, eventually can sell us a lot more Xbox 360s.
“My call is $50, I think that’s where it’s going to be launched.”
Remember this, Microsoft has not given Creeper a an official price yet, so this is merely a (well respected, arguably) analyst’s guess. We don’t even have Creeper’s proper name yet, but that’s coming in June.
Over at MTV Multiplayer, Russ Frushtick got a chance to play with and observe the Hand Ball demo for the Creeper and experimented with just how close the motion capture is to real life movements.
I had a pretty large sample size, sitting through 5 demos, capturing about 40 different movements from a variety of journalists. Across those 40 movements, the fastest life-to-screen transition was .08 seconds, while the slowest was .12 seconds. A tenth of a second was the consistent average, though.
Creeper isn’t an instant capture. Most cameras aren’t, so this makes sense. Only being off a tenth of a second isn’t bad, though. And this is only the beginning of Creeper’s hardware life, so this gap could get cut down considerably, much like the Wii did with MotionPlus.
The demos that Microsoft are allowing people to play for the camera are pretty limited, so there might be even less of a delay than that… or not. We won’t really know the specifics of Creeper until it’s in homes and people are using it, and writing about it.