Credit to imail for first bringing this to our attention in the infamous Kinect-does-not-work-while-seated thread. This one seems to have slipped under the radar. There's been a lot of interviews asking about multiplayer but every answer I've read only states that "multiple" people can be supported at a time.
There was this one interview which stated that Kinect can track up to four people--but this recent article with the creators of the tech states that while it can actually track as many people as can fit in camera sight, it can only process two at a time.
The relevant quote:
I've been looking for official specs from Microsoft which might state how many players are supported but so far can't find a thing. Discuss?
PrimeSense reps also told me that the camera can "see" any number of people on the screen -- you can fit as many people in that camera as possible, and the computer will see all of them and can even recognize them as human shapes. But it can only run calculations on two people at a time, just because the processing power required to track all of the body's locations and movements is so great. During our testing with the device, a person moving in front of the camera was able to "steal focus," but the computer can also be told through gestures to keep focus on a certain person.
UPDATE: Alx wants it clarified that these people are the original tech creators who licensed it to Microsoft and that their statements do not necessarily reflect on the final product.
UPDATE: Literally no one in the gaming press seems interested in asking questions about this yet, but not a single announced Kinect title supports more than two person multiplayer--this goes for games which support it on PS3 and Wii:
Originally Posted by Alx
So the standard Primesense camera embeds a chip that does the processing, but is limited to 2 complete skeleton analysis, while the kinect outputs only the depth map and also the human detections (which is not limited to 2 persons according to the other statement).
It's still probable that there is a limitation on what can be processed on the 360 (like this dancing game that could only manage two players), but it put the OP in another light...
Originally Posted by beast786
I think it for sure has the 2 people limitation. Atleast for launch. For example
This is from the company itself
"Zumba instructor, the stage transforms into a high voltage party atmosphere with special effects and additional crowd dancers. Players can also grow that party at home with up to four players on Wii™ and PlayStation Move, and up to two players on Kinect for Xbox 360. "
So 4 for PS3 and WII but only two for 360. Why only two for 360. Especially since other two have 4 players.