Although I don’t own an Xbox (I’m a Sony boy) a good friend of mine, Jamie, does. He checked out and website, and kindly wrote us up a review of Xbox Kinect. Anyway, check it out below and you can follow him at http://twitter.com/jamie_reiter.
Jamie’s Kinect Review
After reading Ewan’s great review on Sony’s Playstation Move, I was finally tempted to take Black Ops out of the XBOX, and give Microsoft’s reply to Move a try.
The XBOX Kinect is basically a long camera, or ‘sensor’, which can pivot and track your movement, and sits on top of your TV. It really does feel like a next generation version of the Eyetoy on the Playstation 2, only longer, sleeker, and made by Microsoft.
The best thing about the Kinect is the fact that, because it uses a camera and motion sensor, there is no remote. You just use your body. On the Wii, you could cheat some of the games by instead of standing up and moving your whole body, you could just sit down and wave your arm. This is not possible on the Kinect. You need to jump, duck, punch and kick your way through the games, and I believe this is a good thing.
The Kinect sensor is surprisingly accurate, but not so accurate that every single move you make is shown on-screen. While it is hilarious dancing and watching the character on the screen dance, if you hold up the peace sign, it will just show a normal hand. The Kinect also works best if you are standing in between 1.8 – 3 metres away from the television, and if you move out of this space, it warns you.
So far, 41 games have been published for Kinect, and more are in development. Also, the Kinect has Video Chat with other XBOX 360 users, or can connect to your Windows Live Messengers account.
I received ‘Kinect Adventures!’ with my Kinect, a game full of different mini-games for Kinect, much like Wii-Play. Kinect Adventures has 5 mini-games, each with 9 different levels or tasks to complete. Out of the 5, my favourites were Reflex Ridge, where you are on a moving platform and have to dodge obstacles, and Rallyball, a game where you bounce a fast-moving ball back at a wall.
As well as Free Play, you can also play a campaign, play online, time yourself at the mini-games and view photos the Kinect takes of you during your games.
The Kinect also has some great little features too. If you need to pause at anytime during the game, just hold your left arm out for a few seconds and the game will pause. And in the regular XBOX menu, waving at the Kinect will activate a special Kinect menu, which you can navigate with a movement of your hand.
On the other hand, the Kinect also got a little frustrating. I had trouble with the game ‘Space Pop’, a zero-gravity mini-game where you must pop floating bubbles, because when I tried to pop the furthest from the back or closest to the front, the Kinect said I wasn’t standing in the right place. It also had trouble with recognizing me pausing halfway through a game.
Still, the Kinect was great fun, even for a more serious gamer like me. I’d recommend it to anyone, even just to rent for a party or to have some friends over. As for replay-ability, I’d say it would last a fairly long time, because you are always trying to beat your old scores. Add in online and offline multiplayer, a campaign and timed games, Kinect is perfect, and would easily last as long as any other game.
I give the XBOX Kinect 9/10 and Kinect Adventures 8/10
Also, it is believed Microsoft will be bringing Kinect software to the PC, with Korean game developer GamePrix announcing their MMORPG ‘Divine Souls’, will be one of the first PC games to use the Kinect software.
I have now also given the Kinect a bit of a go, and I have to say, I was surprised by how good it was. I am a Sony fan, and although I’m not conceding defeat, I think Playstation and Xbox have drawn on this one .
Xbox doesn’t have the Move’s calibration difficulties and a much wider (and better quality) selection of games, but the lack of physical controller isn’t everyones cup of tea. The Kinect is pretty cool how is senses entire body movement but it doesn’t have quite the same accuracy as the Move. It’s not much of a difference though.
I’d still give both the Move and the Kinect 8.5/10
On terms of which motion controller to buy, I’d say that it depends on which console you prefer. Of course I’d say that I think the PS3 is a better system, but the Xbox does do a couple of things better then the PS3, and it just depends on what you want from the system. If you’ve decide you want to play motion controller games without owning a system, I’d first research both systems and then get the motion controller that comes with that.