E3: Kinect Voice-Powers Mass Effect 3 and Ghost Recon

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Motion controls may be out, but voice controls are in.

Last week, we reported that BioWare’s Mass Effect 3 team had been joking about Kinect functionality in the sci-fi shooter. As it turns out, ME3 will support Kinect after all – just not in the “flap your arms” way most of us were imagining.

Microsoft revealed at its E3 2011 press conference that Mass Effect 3 would utilize Kinect’s voice control during combat and dialogue scenes. During conversations, the player can simply speak Shepard’s lines instead of selecting them, though one can only imagine that this would be a bit awkward if your Shepard is the opposite gender.

In combat, though, the Kinect voice control seemed much more intuitive. You could bark orders for your squadmates – ordering Liara to move up and perform a specific attack, or ordering everyone into cover.

Kinect voice controls will also be featured in Ubisoft’s Ghost Recon: Future Soldier. The “gunsmith” mode, which allows players to customize their weaponry, will allow a user to kit out their gun with gestures and voice controls. Phrases, like “optimize for close combat,” will also work.

Ubisoft said that every Tom Clancy going forward will also use this voice recognition technology. No word on how it will work for PS3 or PC versions of the games.

Read our E3 2011 Microsoft liveblog here.

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See all our coverage directly from the show floor.

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