Mass Effect 3 saw the introduction to several new features and overall improvements, one of which was the use of Microsoft’s Kinect sensor to direct your squad-mates in combat situations by belting out voice commands.
It’s an admittedly impressive implementation, and it’s one that almost never happened. Speaking in an interview with OXM, BioWare’s Casey Hudson said that the developer originally had no intentions of adding in Kinect functionality to Mass Effect 3–it was added in almost by accident.
“We didn’t set out to make Mass Effect 3 a voice-controlled title,” Hudson said.“But a programmer was working in the studio, had the Kinect hardware, and was just experimenting with it. He realized that with the software that comes with Kinect, it was very easy to connect something that you can do in the game with something you’ve said, almost as easy as that.
“No research required – it was all there, done for us. We started thinking about what we could actually achieve with that. So many things came to mind – you could tell a squad member to attack your target, you could tell a squad member to switch weapons. While you’re busy with the controller, you can tell him to do something that you’re not physically able to do, because your thumbs aren’t free.”
Hudson went on to praise the Kinect technology, and technologies like it, as being the “future of interactive storytelling.”
“You’re just talking to a character, and you’re going deeper into their conversation, asking them questions and telling them things and after it’s over you pick up the controller, and it’s a cold piece of plastic, and you think ‘this is the old way, and what I was doing was the future’.”
Did you like how BioWare implemented Kinect functionality in Mass Effect 3?