Microsoft's Vice President Talks Xbox 360 In 2008

Microsoft's Vice President Talks Xbox 360 In 2008 Microsoft's Vice President Talks Xbox 360 In 2008

At DICE summit, Microsoft's Game Studios corporate VP Shane Kim answered all questions about Xbox 360 and its future.

One of the major setbacks for Microsoft in 2007 was the loss of Bungie Studio, Shane Kim admitted. "People have speculated that we were stifling their creative freedom, but I can tell you there's no studio that had more freedom at Microsoft Game Studios than Bungie. I think, at the heart of it, they wanted to return to their independent roots. At the end of the day, you are talking about human beings here. My personal philosophy? You want to work with people who are happy to work with you."

But losing a second party developer, according to Kim, is not a big deal for a console which relies mainly on third party developers. "The vast majority of software sales are going to come from third parties. We don't have the dominant share on our own platform - that comes from third parties. And if you look at the results for great third-party platform titles, we're outselling other platforms 2:1, 3:1 and so on."

Kim asserted that while Wii has already surpassed Xbox 360's hardware sale, Xbox 360 fans spent more money than their Wii counterparts. "It's easier to focus on console unit sales, but if you look at the consumer spending on the current generation, Xbox 360 customers spend 45 percent of next gen spending."

But that doesn't mean that Microsoft won't be learning from Nintendo's successes, namely, capturing the casual market.

Oddly enough, Xbox 360's big guns are the biggest deterrent for this new approach. "When your flagship titles are Halo and Gears of War, most people naturally attribute a brand of mature-rated hardcore to the Xbox platform. I'm glad we have Halo and Gears of War, but it makes it harder to reach out to some people", Kim explained. "We do have a lot to offer to people and we have to do a better job of letting people know. We're trying to get mass-market with Xbox 360, and the generation has a long way to go."