Microsoft announced on its official press site that it will start selling Xbox One units without the motion sensor Kinect at US$399 in its current 13 markets (which is in North America and Europe) this June. In addition, any user who subscribed with Xbox Live’s Gold account will get one of the free games this June for the Xbox 360: Dark Souls, Charlie Murder and Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition.
Sources close to the company told e27 that this particular unit and the current Xbox Live Gold free game plan will be available in Asia. Details on its finalised price would be shared at a later timeframe, as the Xbox One is scheduled for a September release this year in the region, including Japan, Korea, China and India.
Frankly, it’s a great idea for Microsoft to minimise console cost and a step forward for the company in terms of listening to its player base. If it wants to succeed and maintain its relevance in Asia and China, it needs to find a way to make its console cheaper or equivalent to the Sony PlayStation 4 console’s price point. Barring a few uses with dance games like the Dance Central series, the Kinect wasn’t received well by its core market and most developers who worked on Xbox consoles.
On the other hand, the company previously touted the motion sensor as a necessity for the Xbox One. This does make the company look like it’s going back on a lot of its obligation and just caving in to market expectations. Change is necessary at this point, but it’s hard to take a company seriously if it changes up its ideals when it’s convenient. Still, the tides may change if it has games that will catch its audiences’ interests when its Electronic Entertainment Expo pre-show conference starts June 9.
Stay tuned to e27’s gaming section for its takeaway on E3 starting June 10 (timezone differences, don’t forget).