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Welcome to Michael's blog. Michael Andrew, (aka Michael The Maven) is a freelance producer, photography instructor, tech innovator, and when needed, disaster aid specialist. Disclaimer: Michael is a participant in Bhphoto & Amazon affiliate programs that provides an advertising commission if you purchase through links on this website.


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11.19.10         gadgetry  

Xbox Kinect Review


I just got a Kinect Module for my XBOX 360 (after waiting for a couple weeks on backorder). This technology is really fascinating to me and I wanted to check it out. I have only tested it for about an hour, and so far, I am very impressed. It's much like a Wii, just taking it a few steps further. Like Minority Report with Tom Cruise, you can interact with the XBOX Menu and other controls with hand movements. It works better if you have a lot of room, like 10'x10 but seems to be able to work ok in smaller spaces.

From what I am seeing, most of the games are like exercise, dance or sport related. Not seeing any 1st person shooters or anything like that. (Bungie...please make one for Halo!) Right now the selection of games is it's weakest point. I hear there is a Harry Potter Game coming but I haven't seen it. I hear another great one is called "Children of Eden" which is coming out next year.

As far as the Games that I tried go:

The game it comes with, "Kinect Adventures" was unimpressive to me and I got bored of it quickly. It seems like this is a "warm-up" / "learn-to-use" the Kinect type deal.



"Dance Central" on the other hand was quite fun, especially because I typically do not enjoy dancing. There is now hope for me to hone my soon to be amazing dancing skills...yes...it will all happen on Dance Central...if I can only memorize all these fancy moves. Cannot wait to show up my dance instructing friends! It's pretty my Rock Band or Guitar Hero, only instead of playing music you are dancing. The Kinect Module seemed to work best with this game compared to the others.

I also tried "Fighters Uncaged" where you use body motions to fight opponents. I am 50-50 on this one, it may turn out to be really amazing once I finish all the "training" of learning the moves and techniques. The one thing I didnt like about this game was that sometimes it "missed" my moves, for example, my opponent trying to hit me and I attempt to block or dodge and it completely missed. I am not sure if this was me not moving correctly (which I thought I was) or if the sensor couldnt pick it up. Otherwise it was a fun game and once you get into it, a nice little cardio workout.

I hear that the "Zumba Fitness" game is great, but I am not so sure I am going to go there just yet.

To sum it up, I would say this: If you are thinking about getting this as a present for someone for Christmas, I would suggest ordering it immediately. As in yesterday. While the technology is not perfect, it is a very different video game type experience and is a great indication of things to come. It took a couple weeks and they are moving like hot cakes. I also have a few friends that have children friendly games who say they just love it. It should be one of the big hits for Christmas, which means they will be hard to find very soon.
Other Game Previews:

Kinect: Star Wars could be good, but s lacking some polish as of this preview (note how the storm troopers fall over)



Sonic Freeriders



Here is a video showing what "Children of Eden" Looks like... keep in mind- the player is only using his body to play the game, there are no handheld controllers.


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