OXCGN’s Kinect Star Wars KidGamer Review
Does anger lead to hate, or is this the one we’ve been looking for?
©2012 Kid Gamer
Editor: We at OXCGN decided that it was more in keeping with the target market of Kinect Star Wars to get our guest ‘Kid Gamer’, a tween who held a game controller before he learned to walk, to do this review.
I have to admit that since getting my own Kinect over Christmas for my own children and non-gamer guests, I’ve had a load of simple but pure fun swashbuckling and kicking hombres in Puss In Boots and swinging my arms around wildly in the must-have Kinect Fruit Ninja.
However, for a ‘real’ gamer this is the snack before the upcoming AAA title.
How does this long anticipated Kinect Star Wars ‘snack’ fare with the ‘Kid Gamer’ tester? Is it the way to anger and the dark side, or is this the Star Wars game he’s been looking for?
Star Wars: Episode Kinect
I have always loved the Star Wars movies and when the opportunity to review Kinect Star Wars came I was so happy I ran around the house acting almost as silly as Jar Jar- almost.
When I thought about a Star Wars Kinect game I immediately thought of waving my arms around vigorously trying to smash through goons using a lightsaber and the power of the force, but that Jedi feeling didn’t happen very often unfortunately.
Instead Kinect Star Wars was a mixed bag set of mini-games with a few things that could easily have been improved with more time and work and a few that were tons of fun.
I was upset when I first heard that the release date was extended from last Christmas to April, but now I think with a little more time Microsoft and LucasArts could have done a better job with this game. Maybe it should have been released for this Christmas.
As the game is mostly a series of mini-games, I felt it best to break this game into parts to review it.
I felt that the characters were well voiced by imitators of the popular Star Wars characters.
It was really fun when I had the chance to smash through some battle droids or train to become a Jedi, but unfortunately there were a number of problems as well. One of the problems with the campaign was dodging, ducking, jumping or even using the force which didn’t feel very responsive.
However, the arm movements of your character were very responsive. In fact it was so responsive I made my character do the chicken dance while Yoda was gabbing on about something or other.
This campaign had a variety of activities from racing in a speeder to shooting enemy ships in a space ship.
Graphically, the game looks average when compared with many recent titles but does the job. It does have very poor lip syncing though.
I found the mode Duel was lacking something. When I saw this mode I was hoping to invite a bunch of my friends over and have some duels with them but then I found out that you can only work with a friend battling your own foe.
Then I discovered the system of the duel didn’t feel like you were a Jedi battling Magma guards because most of what the duel is, is blocking.
You are basically putting your arm forward in a horizontal then a vertical then a diagonal then a horizontal position which was not fun at all.
Then you only had a short time to attack and when you did you had to shake around like a manic, which also didn’t make you feel like a Jedi at all.
After you defeat your chosen enemy, the location changes and you fight the same character all over again.
I loved that it was a different system to turning in a car.
If you don’t do the tutorial you will struggle though. After I did the tutorial it still took a bit of getting use to, but once I got use to it I fell in love with it.
I couldn’t find one thing wrong with this part of the game and it reminded me of my father’s N64 Pod Racing game.
The visuals were very attractive and there are a variety of hazards like Tusken Raiders shooting at you, womp rats chewing on your engine, and special abilities from other vehicles like laser fire to avoid.
Then I played it and enjoyed it a lot!
I found it incredibly destructive fun being a huge monster chucking Jawas and Tusken Raiders at buildings!
I also loved that with one stomp a building would collapse. This was one of my favourite parts of the game.
This was responsive, fun and I loved the simplicity. Mind you that same simplicity means gameplay doesn’t advance much.
GALACTIC DANCE OFF
I was amazed that they would put dancing in a non-dancing game. I’m a fan of dancing games (don’t tell my friends) but this was something that looked like one of those April fools game jokes, like the Kinect Assassin’s Creed trailer.
To be honest I thought it was so weird that this was the part of the game I tried first. But then I saw the song selection and I was very confused.
Seriously ‘Dancing like Han Solo’? I had to see how ridiculous this was but then I actually found myself enjoying a Star Wars dancing mini-game!
I also loved how they made up different move names like ‘trash compactor’ or ‘force push’ just because that is what the moves actually looked like.
However I found it got a bit repetitive.
Which side of the force?
I still can’t believe I enjoyed dancing to a bunch of cheesy music. More believable was that I enjoyed smashing people up when I was a rancor, waving my arms around in the missions bashing through enemies, and especially the pod racing.
My father’s first movie was Star Wars and so he was disappointed with the focus on the newer films and the silliness of it all.
This game, however, was aimed at less serious gamers, and less serious Star Wars fans.
On the whole this game succeeded in being fun for kids. The look is adequate and the sound is strong with the usual Star Wars anthems making the experience authentic.
It didn’t impress me with the Jedi duels, which should have been the highlight, and the unresponsiveness of jumping, ducking, dodging and using the Force.
I felt this was a solid effort at making a Star Wars game and one that I’ll get out whenever my little cousins come to visit and need to get rid of some of their hyper energy.
©2012 Kid Gamer
Filed under: 3rd Party Games, Console gaming, Game Impressions, Kinect reviews, Microsoft Games, New Game Information, New Xbox 360 Games, Xbox 360, Xbox 360 Game Previews, Xbox 360 Game Reviews, Xbox 3rd party exclusives Tagged: | Jedi, Kinect, Kinect Star Wars, LucasArts, Microsoft, Star Wars, Star Wars Kinect, Yoda