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Child of Eden: 'This makes Kinect worthwhile for core gamers'

Producer James Mielke on mixing Mizuguchi magic and motion control...

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I think we're just going to kick Cliffy B's ass! I love kicking Cliffy B's ass! No, I love Cliffy B, but yeah Gears of War is a fun, visceral experience where you get to kill the shit out of some people in Gears of War. I love Gears and can't wait for GoW 3.

But when you want to have a chilled, blissed out audio-visual experience that is like nothing else you or your friends have ever seen, when your friends come over and you want to make your audio-visual system sing, this is the game to do it.

It's so expressive and it is the reason why I went to Q Entertainment. When he showed me a tech demo for what the target visual was for the end of Child of Eden's development I was like 'oh man, I've got to be a part of this'.

I'd never seen anything like it before. Moving video textures on particles and cubes... it's such a mind trip. I don't want to play games that are super-realistic all the time, because I play games to get away from the things you see in real life. I play games to do things you can't in real life.

So Child of Eden is really an extension - you extend your hand and a shot comes out, you're purifying things wherever you put your hands - it's really immersive. That's a word that is thrown about a lot but this is really something that is unlike any other game experience. I think people will see that when they try it.

What kind of audience are you expecting Child of Eden to reach?

Everybody who plays it loves it. There's a real big difference between looking at it and then playing. A lot of people have said that when you watch it it is interesting but when you play it... that is when it clicks.

So we hope that everybody in the world buys a copy because that would make us very rich but that's probably not going to happen (laughs). As long as whoever does buy it enjoys it - that's our mission.

I think the core gamer is going to adopt it first. So many people bought Kinect and they're still buying it. Now that they've got their early library out of the way, they've played those games and see what it can do. Now they want something to challenge their senses - they want a core game that is going to make them feel like it was worth it, and they can only enjoy it on Kinect. I think this is that game.


Hopefully with word of mouth they evangelize it and get girlfriends to check it out. You're not chopping heads off, ripping people's spines out - you're shooting flowers. There's a beautiful result in everything you do. How can you not want to give that a spin? That's that kind of game that infects people in a good way and makes them want to try it. If they do that then I think we've achieved our goals.

Of course the game is also playable on PlayStation Move...

When we first started developing the game it was before we knew about the Kinect technology - it was originally designed around the controller to play similarly to Rez. But when Microsoft unveiled the Kinect tech we were able to see what it could do because they showed us Kinect applied to a racing game, to a painting application, so on and so forth.

But for some genres it doesn't make much sense to me because if I'm suddenly doing something with my hands that isn't natural in real life, like racing where I get into a car and expect there to be a steering wheel, that doesn't feel natural to me. If I'm playing a shooting game and I'm pretending to hold a gun that doesn't feel natural because it's a surrogate... I feel like I'm faking it.

With Child of Eden you're extending your hand and what's happening on screen is a direct result of what's shooting out of your hand. So it's like you're Iron Man and you're shooting a repulsor beam... you're Spider-Man and you're shooting a web. That feels natural.

With Child of Eden when I first started working on it I thought I'd probably play with the controller and then when people came over to my house and I wanted to impress them I'd show them the Kinect version because it's much more physical.

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