At this year’s E3 Microsoft debuted Smart Glass; their initiative to integrate devices you already own into the Xbox experience (something I really wanted). This of course was met with varying opinions on the web because the presentation for Xbox Smart Glass, well, just wasn’t that exciting. It wasn’t exciting because it doesn’t have potential; it wasn’t exciting because it didn’t show what this new tech can do with dedicated games. The presentation showed off some conceptual integration for Madden and Halo 4, which I thought was a step in the right direction, but then the presentation nose-dived with its media applications. I think it’s cool that you can start a movie on your tablet than finish on your TV at home, but that can already be done with other devices currently on the market (Apple TV). Than showing off IE for Xbox 360 was an absolute snore fest. We all wanted MS to show us something new and different, not things that would probably run better on our tablets and smartphones to begin with, but I digress.
The reason I am enthusiastic about Smart Glass is because of what it will bring to gaming on the Xbox platform. Like I said the media functions and core gaming integration will be welcomed, but I am thinking about what kind of games Smart Glass will allow me to play on my Xbox that weren’t necessarily possible before, also what kind of market this could open up for Microsoft. Like Apple’s App Store, Microsoft’s Smart Glass could have a similar market (aside from the one that Windows already has), offering unique games that could be playable on our televisions, being controlled with our smartphones and tablets. Well, I already have a few games in mind that I could get down with on my HDTV, so let me give you the 411.
1 – Infinity Blade – Infinity Blade is the sole reason I got into smartphone/tablet gaming. I had always been a fan of dedicated handhelds, but kind of brushed of smartphone gaming, never really giving it a fair shake. That all changed when I played Infinity Blade for the first time. Infinity Blade blended brilliant gesture based gameplay with addictive RPG elements and literally infinite replay value. For me Infinity Blade established smartphones and tablets as viable and capable gaming platforms, but I always wished that the game would crossover to a console. Infinity Blade hit arcades and I was sure that it would have saw a Kinect release, but nothing yet. This game would make an excellent debut for the inevitable launch of Smart Glass titles.
2 – Angry Birds – The game that flipped the gaming world on its head, put it in a figure four leg lock, than power bombed it off a skyscraper. That might sound a little extreme, but in a way it’s very true. Angry Birds is the epitome of the mobile gaming experience. It has sold phenomenally well on every platform it’s been on and I believe that success could easily be replicated on Xbox 360 through Smart Glass. Using your smartphone or tablet, you could perfectly recreate the mobile experience on your HDTV, making Angry Birds an excellent console experience in conjunction with its immense mobile success. This casual title would and should be a no brainer for MS when games start to roll out.
3 – Jetpack Joyride – The smash hit from Halfbrick Studios would be an absolute blast (no pun intended) on the Xbox 360. The game is as simple as they come, but it has so much charm and replay value that I could easily find myself dumping hours into a console variation as I did the mobile one. Barry Steakfries needs some console lovin. MS and Halfbrick already have relations with Fruit Ninja, so let’s make this happen MS.
4 – Draw Something – OMGPOP’s take on Pictionary was an overnight success and even though the game’s following has tapered drastically in recent times, I think that Draw Something would make an excellent title for Smart Glass. It would take full advantage of a tablet or smartphone and your elementary-esque drawings would look…less elementary on your HDTV. Draw Something pretty much integrates with everything already so why not get Xbox in on the fun. I’d be surprised if this game didn’t crawl its way onto Xbox when Smart Glass picks up speed, so keep your eyes out for it.
5 – Temple Run – Run away, run away, run away to save your life…from monkeys (and if you wish to survive). Temple Run and all its gyroscopic glory would be terrific for Xbox Smart Glass. The game is simple, fun, and like most mobile games can drain hours of your life if not careful. Imagine if there were Xbox exclusive skins, how awesome would that be? Master Chief being chased by Covenant or Marcus Fenix being chased by Locust, or Ferraris being chased by, ugh, Lamborghinis; what I am getting at is there are so many possibilities with Temple Run on Xbox. It might sound a little farfetched, but that kind of fan service would draw in an audience both old and new, so let’s keep our fingers crossed.
If Microsoft plays its cards right and can get some of these experiences on Xbox I think Smart Glass will be adopted by more than a few people. It will have an audience just based off its media functions alone, but after all Xbox is a gaming platform having more gaming experiences is paramount.
I am by no means a mobile gaming expert and these games are just a few of many that would work well with Xbox Smart Glass. So what did I miss? What games would you like to see integrated with Xbox Smart Glass and brought to the big screen in your living room? Sound off in the comments and let us know, you may even get me more excited. Until then stay tuned for more of me here at HeyUGuys Gaming.