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Microsoft's Gosen warns of 'thin line between gimmick and great gameplay'


Look, it's not that Microsoft's Xbox VP, David Gosen, dislikes the Wii and its parade of people-friendly peripherals. "What Nintendo have done with the Wii is truly fantastic – there is no question about it." No question at all -- but there is a but. "But I think sometimes there is a thin line between gimmick and great gameplay." And there's no question that said but refers to that thing that lets you play games with your butt.

Speaking at a Gamefest UK keynote and later to the folks at Develop, Gosen admitted that while different interfaces, whether they be video cameras or plastic guitars, are important in bringing new players into the market, they need to serve a "truly game changing experience." Gosen went on to cite research which found Wii Fit players abandoned their "digital bathroom scales" quite quickly. "They are not good if they are gimmicks. There is a challenge for us to make sure that all new user interfaces are deep and are rewarding to the end user."

And how do you do that, exactly? Gosen offers, "So we have to get the balance right, because what we are doing is bringing new consumers into the market for the first time in their lives sometimes – and we have to treat them with respect." Get the balance of game design right, huh? Sounds like the perfect Wii Fit game, no?

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