|System: X360 (KINECT)||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Rare Ltd.||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Microsoft Game Studios||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Nov. 4, 2010||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-4||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Some games, like Track and Field, are fun, but aren't very kind if you don't have a space where you can be loud. It requires you to pound your feet on the ground as you run and then leap into the air. As I've noted a couple times before in other Kinect reviews, this kind of thing is anathema to apartment dwellers. So consider your living quarters carefully before getting your hopes up about Kinect Sports.
The Kinect camera also works well in this game. I had a lot of problems in some sections of Motion Sports that made me appreciate the level of control Kinect Sports offers. Many other games I've played on Kinect have had a hard time registering my jumps, kicks, etc, but here everything worked almost flawlessly. It stands with Dance Central as one of the better games at utilizing the camera effectively.
The graphics may have surprised me the most though. It's not so much about how good individual things look, but rather how well some scenes are put together. I laughed myself silly when I saw my little avatar come strolling into the arena in Boxing as thousands of individual avatars cheered in the crowd. And that was before I noticed that I had two little avatar body guards, an older balding avatar trainer, and even an avatar ring babe accompanying me to the ring as pyrotechnics went off everywhere. This amount of polish is afforded to every segment of the game.
The only complaint I can levy against Kinect Sports is that there's just not enough of it. While Sports Champions achieved depth by offering a huge amount of opponents and difficulties, Kinect Sports does no such thing. Without some friend/family to play with, you'll probably run out of things to do pretty quickly. That said, I think most of the games are good enough to make you want to replay them many times.
I never would have guessed that Rare's return to form would come as they released a game like Kinect Sports, but in this case they did a great job. It's certainly not going to be a legendary game by any stretch of the imagination, but anybody looking for a compelling experience for their new Kinect unit would do well to give Kinect Sports a try, especially if you've got some friends or family that can experience the fun with you. It easily could have become a weak game that nobody cared about, but Rare gave it a special touch that elevated this game to the level of other great motion-sports games.
CCC Freelance Writer