Kinect making a comeback in my household!
After starting with a bang last November the Kinect captured gamer’s imaginations with its sci-fi tech which created a new paradigm of gaming controls. Unfortunately with only a handful of good games, hit and miss responsiveness, space concerns, and too many mini-game collections that were overly successful on the Wii, the air slowly seemed to be leaking from the Kinect’s bubble. While sales exceeded expectations, the software did not.
At my house games like Kinect Sports, Dance Central, and Kinectamals kept the troops happy for awhile, but as 2011 soldered on Kinect became more of an expensive interface to control my menus and movies. The good news is that on the cusp of its first anniversary, Kinect has poised itself to once again recapture that excitement it produced last holiday season. Already I have my Fall line-up of Kinect games that have me once again excited to play the Kinect. he following is what has me standing and shaking all around in front of my TV these days:
Strength, Power, Agility – You sure taught those 8 or more fruit a lesson!
Gamerscore = 20 Unlocked on 16/08/2011
Fruit Ninja Kinect kicked off the Kinect renascence around my house. Though Child of Eden came before, I chose to start here as I felt more comfortable playing CoE with a conventional controller. One of the most important Features of FNK is that everyone in my family can play and enjoy this one, especially my littlest one! While very simple, Fruit Ninja has its elements of strategy as well. You will get your fair share of a workout from slicing fruit on this one for sure!
The First Kill – Defeated your first creature
Gamerscore = 5 unlocked on 23/10/2011
Rise of Nightmares was the next game to arrive, though it was not my next game to purchase. I originally was not sold on the gore-driven story, but a recent sale plus the onset of Halloween I decided to take a chance with it and I am glad I did. I posted previously during Fright Week about how impressed I was to that point with a survival-horror game being playable on Kinect. And while I have yet to return to the game, I am really looking forward to my next session just to see what happens next!
Look Ma, No Controller! – Use Kinect to drive any car in Free Play
Gamerscore = 5 unlocked on 11/10/2011
Forza Motorsport 4, while nor built exclusively around the Kinect, is integrated very deeply into the game. Other than for navigating menus, the Kinect driving mode actually works quite well. You can play by yourself, or with a friend using the Kinect to steer your car. Where the Kinect kind of falters within Forza is head tracking. For me I just found it did not work as I would like, fortunately it is not integral to the experience. The Kinect expands the overall Forza experience and is an excellent addition to the series.
Far Out Field Goal – Scored a field goal with at least 40 yards to go when playing Football Gamerscore = 20 Unlocked on 25/10/2011
Kinect Sports Season 2 for me is the breakthrough Kinect title of the season. With six great sports to play: Darts, Football, Baseball, Golf, Tennis, and Skiing, there is never a shortage of great games to play! The improvements and integration of the Kinect tech are very evident in this title. Personally I love playing Darts, and the other games play to be very fun as well. The inclusion of sports like Football and Baseball will ensure that it will be another Kinect Sports Christmas!
Patience Is a Virtue – Listened to the entire background theme of the game in one sitting Gamerscore = 10 Unlocked on 01/11/2011
Dance Central 2 arrived the same day as Kinect Sports 2, just like their predecessors on the launch day of the Kinect. And today like then these two games are the flagships of the Kinect. Dance Central 2 ramps up its game with two-player simultaneous play, a campaign mode, dance battles, and the ability to port all you old Dance Central songs to the new version. While I have not had too much time to play with this game yet I want to dig into it more, even if just to get my wintertime exercise.
Certainly a lot going on with Kinect right now. A lot of great variety and games to choose from, I look forward to putting the Kinect through its paces. There is also a lot of great content on the horizon to look forward to as well. Here is but a short list of my must-play Kinect titles of 2012:
- Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor looks to exceeded the ambition of the original!
- Mass Effect 3 will be even more intuitive with voice commands…
- …as will Ghost Recon: Future Soldier. The Gun-Smith looks cool as well!
- Project Draco, the spiritual successor to the much-beloved Panzer Dragoon.
- Haunt looks to provided scares-a-plenty!
There is a lot to do with connect as it slowly integrates itself into your daily entertainment package, but it is always about the games, and the games look to be there and coming along with increased quantity and quality. Remember that you are the controller…