Kinect has been on the market for about 3 months and it has already sold a few million units. Motion controlled gaming to me, seemed like a cheap gimmick to make a few bucks here and there. After spending some time with the Wii, PS Move, and Kinect, I can finally give my honest opinion on Kinect and the future of motion controlled gaming.
For this review I will be going over Kinects’ functionality, build quality and space required to play.
What’s In The Box: When you open the Kinect box you are greeted with a super sexy, ultra glossy Kinect sensor. Upon further inspection you will find an adapter that allows you to “Kinect” your older Xbox360 model with your new Kinect sensor. Kinect also comes bundled with a full game, Kinect Adventures. I will cover Kinect Adventures in a separate review. As you can imagine, Kinect also comes with a stack of paperwork explaining how to hook up your new sensor.
Whats The Build Quality Of The Sensor: Right away you can tell that the Kinect sensor was developed with quality in mind. This is going to be hard to believe if you are one of the un-lucky recipients of an Xbox 360 that red ringed. The sensor feels sturdy, very sturdy in fact. The cable that is attached to the sensor, which connects to your Xbox, is also very sturdy. It is a thick cord, rather than a cheap flimsy cord like the one found on the Wiis’ sensor bar.
How Big Is It: That’s what she…..never mind. The sensor is a little on the bulky side, but its not so big that it distracts from whatever sexy components you might have. I have my sensor directly in front of my 42” TV and it is hardly noticeable. I will admit the PS Move may be smaller but the Kinect sensor looks a lot cooler next to my TV. Below is a picture of an Xbox 360 controller side by side with the Kinect.
How Accurate Is The Motion Control: To be completely honest, the motion control is actually quite accurate. The games I have demoed Kinects functionality are Dance Central and Kinect Adventures. Both games responded to my motions almost perfectly. I was quite impressed with the motion tracking in Dance Central, considering it needs to be almost spot on. For the record I am 5’10 and the sensor had no problems detecting me. On a side note, TQcast Editor and co-host CrazyJ, who happens to be 6’3, also had no problems with Kinect detecting his enormous frame. It is rumored however that Kinect will not detect Chuck Norris, as his Ninja skill is though the roof.
How Much Space Is Required: Here comes some bad news, depending on your situation. Kinect requires a lot of floor space to play. I gave myself about 7 feet to play and that was barely enough. I had to constantly stay at the 7 foot mark or the Kinect would not detect me properly. I think the sweet spot is between 7 and 8 feet of space. So if you’re thinking of playing this in your bedroom, think again, unless of course you have a room the size of Shaq’s.
Should I Buy It: If you want to experience the future of motion controlled gaming, then you definitely want to pick up Kinect. The list of games is limited right now, but I do see the list of games growing and using the Kinect in ways that are truly unique. Kinect is not something to compare to the Wii, nor is it something to compare to the PS Move. If you have either or both, you are definitely not losing anything by picking up the Kinect as well.