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Kinect Star Wars

version: pal - year: 2012 - developer: terminal reality - publisher: lucas arts- format: xbox360, kinect, dvd - condition: mint - rarity: common

One of the better Kinect games out there, bundled with the Star Wars branded X-Box360

 

After years of trying to resist to the obtuse region locking practices of many publishers on the Xbox360, I finally gave in and got a European system. The trigger though has been this awesome-looking Star Wars themed X-Box360 which is really a little jewel to behold. It comes with a 320 GB hard-drive, a white Kinect, the Kinect Star Wars and Kinect Adventures games and has heart-warming customized R2-D2 sounds when opening/closing the DVD tray or when switching the console on/off. I just love it!

 

The singleplayer game is entertaining and rather varied

 

The space shooting sections play like an on-rail shooter

 

The vehicles sections are fun and being able to lean your body left and right to steer is a dream come true

 

Podracing is a racing mini game somewhat reminiscent of Sega's Star Wars Racer arcade coin-op

 

Rancor Rampage mini game: here, play as one of these giant beasts and destroy cities by swinging your arms like some kind of monkey

 

Galactic Dance-off: Dance along with Star Wars characters to impress Jabba!

 

The Duel of Fate is maybe the most hardcore mini-game which requires a lot of practice to be mastered. Do you have the skill to become a Jedi Master ?! So far, kicked my ass Vader has... (to say it Yoda-style)

Review - Many gamers across the world wondered for some time now what would happen if Kinect and Star Wars were put together.

I am new to Kinect but I grew up with the original Star Wars trilogy. From the old VHS tapes to the remastered DVDs, I watched the movies countless times, and every time I got completely fascinated by what is admittedly George Lucas Opera Magna.

If you have any interest in the trilogy, there is a good chance that at one point or another in your life, you found yourself standing in front of a mirror, possibly in your underwear, swinging an imaginary lightsaber while pathetically mimicking its distinct and iconic humming sound.

Well, now with Kinect Star Wars, you’ll be able to do just that as well as a variety of other exciting and even more embarrassing things, like dancing in front of Jabba the Hutt along with Princess Leia, Han Solo etc to the beat of Christina Aguilera or the Village People (Y.M.C.A.) in the Galactic Dance mode.

The main story mode is a mix of different Star Wars fiction which I am not really familiar with, with a bunch of new characters which aren’t very charismatic and the return of some of the classic characters from the original trilogy.

Graphically, Kinect Star Wars can count on nicely modelled and animated main characters and some really cool spaceships modelling.

Unfortunately, some of the backgrounds lack in detail especially the textures for the terrains which look a bit pixellated and out of focus when up-close.

Also, minor enemies have a low polygon count, which makes them look way boxier than the main characters.

The music and the voice acting fare better and allow for a greater level of involvement into the Star Wars universe.

Gameplay is where things get really interesting though.

Kinect Star Wars has been polarizing the specialized press and users with people getting either disappointed by the crude and simplistic gameplay experience or seeing some merit into the game’s gameplay mechanics.

Kinect Star Wars may not offer what die hard Star Wars fans were looking for in terms of depth, but in my opinion, that would be missing the point.

What Kinect Star wars does is to offer a fresh new way of interacting with the Star Wars universe which can range from the casual experience to the totally hardcore. Let me explain how.

The singleplayer campaign is largely scripted although it requires players to neutralize enemies, avoid obstacles, drive vehicles and fly spaceships. The lightsaber is mapped onto your right arm while the force is mapped on your left arm (these can be switched around if needed).

To advance forward, you are supposed to make a step towards the TV while avoiding obstacles is achieved simply by side-stepping.

Jumping over obstacles or over enemies is just done by…jumping!

If initially the controls will seem complicated, it only takes a couple of minutes to get adjusted to them and the only thing which will stop you from playing the game from start to finish on one go will be the physical limits of your body!

Kinect motto is “you are the controller” and this means that your muscles will suddenly start aching from all over the place after a prolonged gaming session.

Since the campaign is so short though (about four hours and something), it won’t be long before you free the galaxy from a generic and forgettable threat which I already forgot about.

You shouldn’t play this game expecting to find a deep story or anything like that but rather to have some genuine, mindless fun.

To me though, what really made this package worthwhile and a must Kinect buy is the Duels Of Fate mini-game.

Here, you’ll go on a face off against a variety of famous and less-famous opponents from the Star Wars universe in a series of lightsaber duels.

As you make progress, you’ll be required to clear each fight in less and less time. Defeating count Dooku is the first real challenge while ROR with its insidious and hard to dodge dual lighsabers will seriously put your skills to test. But the real challenge will be Darth Vader himself.

To defeat him, the game requires to clear the battle in under a minute therefore granting you the title of Jedi Master. Here, the timing is so tight that I found it extremely hard to clear the fight in that time. Side-stepping Vader’s attacks, performing perfect blocks, using the force to lift objects from the background to slam them onto him are all tricks to be learned to perfection.

It is worth mentioning that when your lightsaber collides with the opponent’s lightsaber for a prolonged period of time, you’ll be required to push him back either by using the force, or by kicking or head-butting him. At first it may seem totally random how to successfully land these counter attacks but in fact, you simply have to carefully look at a small energy spark which will be moving back and forth between the two lightsabers and perform your move when the spark is close to the hilt of your sword.

Timing is everything is these duels and I truly believe that the real potential of Kinect Star Wars is to be found in this mode.

Bottom line: In the end, if you like Star Wars or simply want to enjoy a fun Kinect game, go for this one without hesitations. All the hate it received is largely unjustified and related to the excessive expectations and neat-picking of bitter and entrenched Star Wars-obsessed purists. 8/10


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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