Microsoft announces five new exclusive Kinect games from Japanese developers

From what we're feeling, consumer sentiment on the Kinect seems rather divided, and frankly the opinions of those within the Engadget team is similarly split. Ultimately, though, it won't be the hardware itself that decides the fate of this peripheral, it'll be the games. At E3 this year Microsoft didn't really wow us with any Kinect titles that turned the thing into a must-buy, but the five games announced today are at least showing some creativity and a lot of potential. Read on for all the details.

  • codename D - This is one of the games we know the least about, but despite that we're perhaps most excited about it. It's from Grasshopper Manufacture, developer of Killer 7 and No More Heroes -- two highly intriguing titles. We were only treated to a short teaser trailer showing a guy wielding a flaming baseball and making peoples' heads explode, not enough to give us a good impression of what the gameplay will be like, but we're hoping for good things.

  • Steel Battalion Heavy Armor - This title from Capcom has to be next in the order of most anticipated. You may remember the original Steel Battalion, an Xbox game made famous for its outrageous $200 controller. This Kinect version will not require such hardware, but looks to still offer the same sort of gameplay. How? That remains to be seen.

  • Project Draco - This title from Grounding again was only teased, with a short trailer showing an odd mix of creatures. It appears to be some sort of dragon riding game, where you'll work your way up from fuzzy critters to fierce dragons. But, with no gameplay shown, we're making some assumptions here.

  • Rise of Nightmares - Sega is bringing some survival horror to Kinect with Rise of Nightmares. We did see some actual gameplay, but it was brief and, ultimately, we're left not knowing much about this game except that you'll apparently be exploring spooky areas full of creepy undead ghoulies.

  • Haunt - Haunt is another survival horror game from NanaOn-Sha and Masaya Matsuura, the man behind Parappa the Rapper and who basically single-handedly created the music game genre. This one, however, looks to have no musical aspects, just a bunch of somewhat goofy looking ghosts.

Overall these five titles are some of the most interesting looking games we've yet seen for Microsoft's new adventure in gaming, but with so little of them being seen -- just 30 second teaser trailers for the most part -- and with none of them set to ship when the Kinect itself does, we're still left wondering whether the thing has enough backing to be a real success this holiday season.