[Editor’s Note: With this post, our newest blogger Wayne Rowe joins the team here at The Bonus View. Wayne will be contributing some coverage of gaming and other topics. Please give him a warm welcome. –JZ]
Microsoft recently announced a new ‘Star Wars’-themed Xbox 360 Kinect bundle at Comic-Con to coincide with a Kinect-enabled ‘Star Wars’ game that will be released soon. I must admit that the console looks pretty slick, despite my misgivings toward Kinect and the ‘Star Wars’ game itself. Regardless, I shared the link around to some of my gaming pals, and the headline question above was soon in debate. My friends are fairly evenly split into two camps. Either:
1) Lame. I didn’t buy a Wii and I’m not buying any of those. If I wanted to jump around, I’d go outside.
2) Looks really cool and technologically advanced, but I’m unsure about the actual games.
I think that I find myself right in the middle of those two camps. I didn’t buy a PlayStation Move or a Wii, and have no interest in those or the new WiiU iPad thingamabob that’s coming soon. However, I do think that the idea of ‘Minority Report‘-style air gestures might be a neat way to interface with a videogame console/entertainment hub ala Xbox Kinect. Is this a more organic interaction than using a controller? Does it truly bring you into the action? I’m not sure.
Truth be told, I nearly bought a Kinect for the ‘Fighters Uncaged’ game and, to a lesser degree, Harmonix’s ‘Dance Central’ (for my wife, of course). How cool would it be to give that baddie a real live knee strike or an actual punch to the face? I’d jump around for that! The ‘Fighters Uncaged’ game got miserable reviews. Joystiq‘s reviewer went so far as to say that he’d “rather eat a rain-soaked box of poison buttholes” than play it again. Ok, gotcha.
Well, what about ‘Dance Central’? You love ‘Rock Band’, don’t you? Sure, I’m an RB geek, but I’m not so much an R&B geek. Apparently, that’s what Harmonix thinks will make you get up and dance. Call me a grumpy old fart, but I don’t dig Soulja Boy or Rihanna.
So what does that leave me with? As far as I can tell, mostly with a lot of games where you have to gesture or jump around wildly to “play.” This seems to me like the next generation of button-mashing games, which I also don’t dig.
What would get me excited? How about some groovy multi-player, multi-gesture puzzle games? How about a fighting game that works? How about some popular games with specific portions that are Kinect-enabled? For example, the next time you need to strangle someone in ‘Call of Duty’, you’d get to choose to wiggle those two thumb sticks or stand up and choke a bitch! Is that too much to ask for?
What would get you excited about picking up a Kinect?