Mass Effect 3 Kinect video shows off voice commands

Is Mass Effect 3 really "better with Kinect?" EA has released an overly-enthusiastic promotional video showcasing the voice controls of Mass Effect 3.

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Is Mass Effect 3 really "better with Kinect?" Unlike most games that utilize the Xbox 360 add-on, BioWare is simply using Kinect to offer voice controls. With your voice, you'll be able to command your partners: "Liara, cover me!" "Garrus, move over there!" You'll also be able to switch weapons and throw grenades by calling it out.

EA has released an overly-enthusiastic promotional video showcasing the voice controls of Mass Effect 3. Do you share these testers' enthusiasm?

Mass Effect 3 will be available on Kinect and other less-shouty systems on March 6th. You'll be able to give the Kinect voice commands a try in the downloadable demo, coming February 14th.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    January 18, 2012 1:30 PM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, Mass Effect 3 Kinect video shows off voice commands.

    Is Mass Effect 3 really "better with Kinect?" EA has released an overly-enthusiastic promotional video showcasing the voice controls of Mass Effect 3.

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      January 18, 2012 1:43 PM

      this is a pretty good use of kinect and I cant wait to try it out. :D

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      January 18, 2012 1:47 PM

      Oh yeah I can't wait to play like I'm Vegeta.

      CHARGE.

      SHOCKWAVE!

      NOOOOVAAAAAA!!


      Lame.

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        January 18, 2012 1:58 PM

        You know, there are a bunch of functions in the UI of ME2 I didn't wind up using as far as team dynamics go. I didn't like having to dig up into the menus, since the pace of combat was better than in ME1.

        If this means I can give orders to squad mates without digging around the menu system I'm all for it.

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          January 18, 2012 2:04 PM

          Sure but it's nothing that couldn't be done with the Xbox Live headset that comes with the system.

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            January 18, 2012 2:44 PM

            That's exactly what I was thinking during the entire video- I already have a headset so I would like to be able to try this feature out without dropping money on a Kinect that I know I'll never use for anything but voice.

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              January 18, 2012 3:15 PM

              Maybe Kinect is recognizing your head angle and using that to set where you are directing people?

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            January 18, 2012 4:13 PM

            I love the irony embedded in the fact that people used to lecture Sony for not including an HDMI cable and what not in the PS3. Now Microsoft has rendered its formerly included headset useless with a gimmicky webcam you have to buy separately for over $100.

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            January 18, 2012 9:34 PM

            I'm guessing a bit here, but I think the kinect may be used for some of the voice command processing. That's part of its function, and keeps some of the load off the main cpu. It's not just a microphone.

            However, I'm still not sold on the idea of talking to the tv though. I'll play this on PC, like the first one (haven't played 2 yet).

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              January 18, 2012 10:07 PM

              Kinect doesn't have an onboard processor, so probably not.

              http://www.1up.com/news/microsoft-no-need-kinect-processor

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              January 19, 2012 9:29 AM

              The Kinnect has no processing power. There is probably some software licensed by Microsoft as part of the Kinnect, however voice recognition of the ilk seen in Mass Effect 3 previews, has been available for eons. Seaman for Dreamcast had more sophisticated voice recognition software. So lets not sit here and try to rationalize Microsoft's corporate messaging. You truly are a fool for buying that black plastic hot dog.

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          January 18, 2012 8:50 PM

          The only order you need to give your teammates is "stay back" as you jump in take everything out yourself.

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      January 18, 2012 1:54 PM

      Not bad... But I'd still rather play it on PC.

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        January 18, 2012 4:11 PM

        Kinect for Windows: NOW AVAILABLE FOR ONLY $249.99!!!

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      January 18, 2012 1:55 PM

      I'm cautiously optimistic. I've found the voice recognition to work really well when I'm navigating the dashboard and netflix, but then I'll play KS: Season 2 and the Kinect seems to have difficulties with verbal commands. As long as the sound (be it effects or music) from the game doesn't interfere with the Kinect picking up my commands, I would make a point to use the option. If I have to raise my voice to levels where my boys think I'm yelling at them...yeah, that won't work. Looking forward to the demo in February.

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      January 18, 2012 2:03 PM

      Shocking this looks helpful,better dust off the kinect I guess. Shit has not been plugged in for months:(

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      January 18, 2012 3:10 PM

      I've been waiting for voice activated weapon switching since forever! This is awesome :)

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      January 18, 2012 3:17 PM

      [deleted]

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        January 18, 2012 3:18 PM

        They have to live up to that 'core games' promise somehow.

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      January 18, 2012 3:19 PM

      But im sure they wont let people with a mic on their pc to use this since MS wants people to buy Kinects.

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      January 18, 2012 3:25 PM

      "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward" "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward" "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward" "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward" "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward" "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward" "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward" "Couch behind cover" "Stand" "Walk forward"

      REVOLUTIONARY

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        January 18, 2012 5:25 PM

        How are you supposed to take cover with all of those couches in the way!?

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        January 18, 2012 5:49 PM

        There's gotta be a loveseat somewhere in there.

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      January 18, 2012 4:09 PM

      Behold the POWER of a $150. microphone!!!

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      January 18, 2012 4:09 PM

      I was actually one of the lucky people at the event depicted in the "Mass Effect 3 is better with Kinect" video. I honestly believe that the game is significantly better. In fact, it's a huge differentiator between the Xbox 360 and PS3/PC versions. It's that good. It worked extremely well, and it allowed me to focus on the combat without having to worry about the ability wheels, etc. It's fantastic.

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        January 18, 2012 5:51 PM

        What's the starting pay over at Microsoft?.

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          January 19, 2012 3:48 AM

          Approving of any feature that people rage against is automatic proof of being a shill. It's not like the vocal minority could possibly just have their head up their ass, that could never happen!

          Not to sound like a dick, but I get sick and goddamned tired of anyone who approves of a feature in a game that the "hardcore" (aka extreme minority) of gamers dislike being labeled a shill.

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        January 19, 2012 2:06 AM

        Couldn't they have just used the headset like other games have done in the past?

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        January 19, 2012 2:35 AM

        Sounds like how I played ME1 and 2 on the PC. Except in those you just look at the enemy and spam 1+2+3 and nuke the fuck out of whatever you're looking at.
        You don't have to speak the full words

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      January 18, 2012 4:13 PM

      Hopefully this will recognize when to finish sex cutscenes based on when I ejaculate.

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      January 18, 2012 4:43 PM

      It ruins the nature of tactically pausing the game, telling multiple commands and watching multiple skills combine on one enemy. They stressed that in ME2. I guess they don't care about that now that MS wants them to stress Kinect.

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        January 18, 2012 4:49 PM

        the defaults were for all those things to happen for you I'm pretty sure. ME has never been about tactically pausing the game due to its deep combat system. The only reason pausing happens is being using the skill wheels via a controller is cumbersome and time consuming, especially once you want to do it for more than just yourself.

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          January 18, 2012 7:10 PM

          On the highest difficulty, I was using the tactical pause/wheel combo all the time, because of all the shit that was going on around me.

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          January 18, 2012 9:47 PM

          what? i paused to issue commands and coordinate my squad constantly, especially on hardcore/insanity...that's why i'm glad that they're raising the difficulty across the board in ME3, to force more people to use squad powers

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      January 18, 2012 4:47 PM

      No reason this couldn't be done with the headset XBL microphone, or with any microphone on the PC. It won't be, of course.

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      January 18, 2012 5:38 PM

      I will actually use this for commanding my squad-mates (you could do this in UT2004 way back in... 2004 and it was awesome)

      But using it to switch weapons, or to "activate" something that I'm pointing at instead of pressing A? Come the fuck on

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        January 18, 2012 5:46 PM

        In fact, not only could you do this in UT2004, but it was a completely open system which allowed modders to add their own voice commands to their mod. When I made CTF4, I made sure it worked with the voice commands so you could command your team mates to attack specific teams. It was really fun to use

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        January 18, 2012 10:34 PM

        I wonder if you can grief people playing when you're watching by shouting random commands.

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      January 18, 2012 8:02 PM

      I once spent hours setting up a system that let you bind speech commands to commands in Operation Flashpoint. That game had ridiculous voice menus so you could literally say something like "move west, stay alert and engage at will" or "squad disembark, spread out, watch the horizon".

      Used it for 5 minutes, felt like the biggest nerd in the world, stopped using it.

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        January 18, 2012 9:55 PM

        I did the same with Descent Freespace 2. Freespace 2 Open supported it or something. Issuing orders to my wingmen was pure awesome. I was using TrackIR as well, and then I put a red lightbulb in my desk with the rest of the lights off for that extra-spacey feeling. Boy, that phase in my life was... interesting. You are not the biggest nerd in the world, I guess.

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      January 18, 2012 11:44 PM

      Why does it need kinect? doesn't any microphone do the job just as well?

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        January 19, 2012 2:11 AM

        Must rely on some Kinect software specific speech recognition, otherwise yeah, it should work just the same on the PC or PS3 as they all support microphones. If it's using MS software and not BioWare's own concoction, then I can see why they can market it as "better with kinect".

        However, if it's BioWare doing all the voice stuff, then MS must have paid them for that 360 exclusivity. Which is still dumb as far as the PC is concerned being a Microsoft platform with its own kinect coming soon.

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      January 19, 2012 2:08 AM

      There is so much more one that could be done with the Kinect. Very disappointing.

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        January 19, 2012 7:31 AM

        Like what? You know as well as I know that if they would have tried anything other than voice command, gamers would have complained that "They were ruining the game" (I hear a lot of gamers doing that now). What do you think they could have done that would have made sense? Please don't say swing your arm out to throw a grenade or move your hand forward to activate a power. I guess what I'm saying is that I don't understand why you are disappointed. They have added an optional feature that actually makes sense for the game. What else would you have them do, without redesigning the whole game?

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          January 19, 2012 10:28 AM

          Of course gamers are going to complain, they always do when there is an exclusive features. But we can't move things forward if we never try anything new or don't use the new tech available to us.

          What should they use the Kinect for? I don't know, head tracking might be a good start that shouldn't break the game for people who don't have a kinect. Really though I would set it up for the sex scenes they always have in mass effect games. Do any of the members of the crew want a back massage? Instead of swinging your arm you will be making slow smooth motions giving a hot rub down with the NPC on the screen responding to the motions.

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            January 19, 2012 2:11 PM

            Interesting ideas. Hmm...head tracking in a third person game... I don't know. Back massage?...I'm not sure. Sounds kind of forced.

            I agree that we should always try new things with new tech, I'm just not sure what else they could have done that makes sense. I think what they have done with the voice command/control makes sense. I'm sure Bioware had many ideas, but ultimately settled on the voice control stuff because it made the most sense.

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              January 19, 2012 2:51 PM

              You could do voice control with the mic that ships with the system, so they really aren't doing anything that has to do with the unique abilities of the Kinect.

              Head tracking might be kind of cool and immersive. You move your head and your character's head moves and so does the camera. It could be subtle enough that it wouldn't really be used for aiming or turning your character. Maybe. Maybe it would be fucking awful if you could move the camera independent of the crosshair. But it doesn't even seem like they are trying.

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      January 19, 2012 7:22 AM

      Lol. I've been using voice commands for games for like 12 years. I bought this stupid fucking sidewinder thing way back when that you basically programmed macros for and then activated them with voice commands.

      It made photoshopping a ton of fun actually. "Save"... "undo"..."undo"..

      Also, wasn't there a tom clancy game built entirely around voice commands like 5 or 6 years ago?

      So innovative!! :(

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      January 19, 2012 7:23 AM

      I am excited about this feature! I plan to use voice commands only when it would make sense for my character. For example, I don't plan to yell "Switch weapon!" or "Grenade!" because that just doesn't sound like something Jericho Shepard would need to yell. However, I do plan to use voice commands like "Liara push!" or Ash, cover me!". I feel that using the voice commands in ways that make sense will work best for me.

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      January 19, 2012 9:59 AM

      [deleted]

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