While attending Tokyo Game Show, Takashi Izumi, Executive General Manager of the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft Japan, revealed that sales of Kinect in the land of the Raising Sun have been “far below expectations”.
According to Izumi, the initially predicted speed of adoption of the Xbox 360 motion controller has not been met, but feedback from early adopter is positive. While Kinect shipped 10 million units worldwide, official sales data for the Japanese domestic market have not been disclosed.
Izumi thinks that part of the problem is that the vast majority of the Japanese Xbox 360 users are hardcore gamers, and tend to spend their money in more complex core games. He expects that the userbase might expand once Kinect dance and sport games will be released in Japan. He also believes that the awareness raised by the presentation of Windows 8 might help increase the popularity of the Xbox brand and of Kinect in Japan.
Considering that the Xbox 360 in Japan isn’t exactly selling like sushi rolls and that the large empty area required by Kinect isn’t exactly common in the generally small japanese apartments, is anyone really surprised?
Maybe Microsoft should stop investing enormous amounts of cash and resources to try (and utterly fail) to “win” in Sony and Nintendo’s turf, in what definitely seems nothing more than a money sink, and redirect them to produce more and better games, maybe some core non-kinect exclusives that have been a tad scarce lately.