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Session with Shane Kim

Microsoft’s Shane Kim is the Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Game Studios, and often makes himself available at major press events. The Spring Showcase was no exception, and Kim helmed one of the several stations on the floor and we were able to ask him some tough questions to which he gave some very frank answers.

We asked Kim about the “Newton” project, a motion sensing device Microsoft is rumored to be working on for the 360. While he did not confirm nor deny such a device, he did tell us that Microsoft is always looking to expand their hardware accessory and peripherals and content lines, and with any product they release, Microsoft will be looking to take a unique approach, focusing on Xbox Live features. To us, that sounds like any possible Wii-mote type device on the 360 will absolutely take it up a notch (is there any way to make the Wii-mote better though?).

On the subject of a possible price drop this Holiday season, Kim indicated that while Microsoft is always looking for ways to be more competitive, and in time, inevitable, there are many factors that go into the decision to lower the console’s price – and at this time, or for the Holiday season, the stars just aren’t aligned for that to happen.

Kim could not be clearer about the possibility of adding a Blu-Ray product or accessory for the Xbox 360 – there simply are no plans of bringing Blu-Ray to the 360. When asked about a possible coalition with Netflix to provide video content on the Xbox 360 platform, Kim offered “no comment.” Naturally, we had to ask about the so-called project “Lips.” Unfortunately, Kim denied any knowledge whatsoever about “Lips.” Kim also provided no comment on the Spring Dashboard Update.

To wrap things up, we threw Kim a question we knew he couldn’t possibly divulge any information on – we asked him about Peter Jackson’s Halo project. To our surprise, Kim offered us one great nugget of information. Kim told us that the story has already been chosen and that Peter Jackson likes it. We were extremely excited to hear that this project actually has legs and is moving forward!

We definitely appreciate Shane Kim’s candor and hospitality at the Spring Showcase. Somehow, our chat with Kim makes us think E3 is going to be very interesting this year.


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