World of Warcraft (Not Miis) Influenced 360 Avatars, Says Microsoft

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Microsoft has finally confronted the criticism--whether fair or not--that the company cribbed Nintendo's Mii avatars for inclusion in its upcoming New Xbox Experience, the dashboard overhaul coming in November.

"It's not like Nintendo created the concept for having a virtual character," Xbox director of marketing Albert Penello said to MTV Multiplayer.

"A lot of people want to compare it to the Miis but ... if you talk to Mark [Whitten, Xbox Live general manager], he'll say his inspiration came more from [World of] WarCraft and seeing how dedicated people get to their characters," Penello explained. Hands-on reports with Avatars coming from the Tokyo Game Show indicate that Avatars have many, many more customization options than Miis, making them more akin to World of Warcraft characters.

Penello even alluded to the chance that the Mii-vatar controversy circulating the gaming press was created by the press itself: "All the [gaming] editors were asking, 'When are you guys going to do your version of the Miis?' ... [and] I remember going, 'You guys are going to slaughter us in the press if we ever do it.'"

From The Chatty
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    October 9, 2008 8:03 PM

    lol...

    Does anyone really believe that?

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      October 9, 2008 8:27 PM

      that depends, have you used the avatars? because the customization does put it closer to the Sims or WoW than Miis

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        October 9, 2008 8:43 PM

        WoW? Are you kidding me? People customize in WoW no differently than any other MMORPG, they pick a face, hair, and body type, that's all. Then it's all about stat and ability gains. This really is nothing more than a play off of Mii's, I can't even see how anyone could try to pretend that it isn't.

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          October 9, 2008 9:45 PM

          yeah except how part of the reason people do that endless loot grind is because the higher tier loot makes them look more badass. They wear a specific colored undershirt and other pieces. Plenty of MMOs have dyes to change the color of other pieces of equipment too.

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          October 9, 2008 9:52 PM

          its closer to sims in regards to the avatars. The only thing relative is that both the Avatars and the Miis are a personal representation, thats it.

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          October 10, 2008 4:23 AM

          I spent fucking HOURS in Oblivion creating my character's face and that was before the Wii had even come out. I demand that they're called Oblivion Characters and not Miis or Avatars! Oh wait, Oblivion didn't invent the concept either...

          (Kinda sucked that after all that effort the face only really mattered on the inventory screen and even then was usually obscured by a helmet. lol, what a waste of time! Fun, though.)