If you haven’t already bought the Kinect for Xbox 360; what the hell are you waiting for? Yeah, I know you need an Xbox 360 to play, you don’t like video games, and you’re poor. Whatever, I don’t want to hear your excuses. The Kinect is worth its weight in gold.
So what’s so special about the Kinect? Your whole body is the controller! Kinda’ like on that old game show Nick Arcade, but way cooler because it’s 20-something years later and, in case you didn’t know, technology has come a long way since then!
The Kinect sensor (shown below) is basically an insanely advanced web cam that detects faces, gestures and voices. It also tracks up to six people at a time with dumbfounding accuracy. So when you stand in front of the sensor and move, your avatar moves in the exact same way. It’s almost freaky at first! This movement technology totally blows the controller-dependant Nintendo Wii and Playstation Move out of the water.
Right now my favorite games are Kinect Sports and Kinect Adventures. We spend most of our time playing Kinect Sports, which features a ton of mini games. My personal favorites are soccer, javelin, long jump and body ball. Soccer is freakin’ addictive, body ball is super intense and usually leaves you chugging a lot of water, and javelin and long jump will have you doing high-knee sprints in the middle of your living room.
Kinect Sports is great for parties – split the crew into two teams and prepare for a death match. I’m sure you could think of a fun drinking game to incorporate into it too. Just be sure to warn your guests that they may want to bring athletic shorts, a t-shirt, and even a sports bra. Oh, and make sure the area is clear of any hazards because injuries are likely. Yeah, I’m being serious!
Kinect Adventures also has a ton of cool mini games like obstacle courses, white water rafting and a game that reminds me of a scene from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. You know the part when Charlie and his Grandpa almost get sucked into the fan? Yeah, it’s like that, but instead of burping you have to wave your arms while moving forward and backward to maneuver yourself.
Although a total blast, the Willy Wonka game was probably not very well thought-out. Fiercley flapping your arms up and down while moving forward and backward results in a lot of kinections (like my elbow kinecting to Ben’s face). I’m sure when the Kinect accident reports start rolling in, this game will be a major contributor. I’ve also kicked the ground a couple times during soccer and rolled my ankle in track and field. Yet the best Kinect blooper so far was our friend Jeff “kicking the soccer ball” and landing directly on his ass. Classic! I also enjoy this Kinect fail: (post continues below video)
After every round the Kinect replays some of your finest moments so you can see what a dork you looked like. If you have an Xbox Live account you can also share the videos so everyone else can see your dorkiness. Unfortunately I don’t have a copy of Jeff’s soccer blunder, but not to worry, we have captured loads of other awesome moments. Like this one of Lindsey and me, which I call Spontaneous Soccer Dance Party (wait for it…wait for it): (post continues below video)
My only complaints about the Kinect are that we need a large area of space to play in; the sensor is finicky about where we stand in the living room – it’s constantly telling us to move right, move left, move forward, move backward; and occasionally if there are multiple people playing it gets our limbs mixed up. However, considering this is the first generation, and what an awesome invention it is, I’ll go ahead and forgive the Kinect for its shortcomings.
Now get your butt to Best Buy and get one for yourself!