Posted on September 1, 2011 AT 06:38pm
Though it may come across as a simple game, Fruit Ninja Kinect actually carries a lot of weight with its release. Since it’s part of XBLA’s excellent Summer of Arcade—an initiative that’s already brought us the superlative Bastion and Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet this year—players expect the game to match a certain level of quality.
It’s the first downloadable Kinect game, and many Kinect owners are hoping this will begin a push for more software to support the device. So, how does a game originally designed for smartphone touchscreens feel when you’re not touching anything at all? Pretty damn good.
Anyone who’s played the original Fruit Ninja will instantly be able to jump right in. After only a couple of sessions in the perfectly ported Arcade, Classic, or Zen modes, you’ll be swinging your arms as proficiently as you swiped your fingers across a touchscreen. The only problem players may find with the controls comes when you’re swinging upward; when you bring your arms back to your sides, the game sometimes interprets that as a downward slice and will cut into something you never intended. Still, you’ll learn to compensate, as the original game translates very well to Kinect overall. In fact, it may actually translate a little too well.
See, after only an hour of play, I’d matched or broken the high scores I’d set in the smartphone app and found myself bored with the game. Would I play it again at some point? Maybe, especially if I had a friend coming over for the local versus or co-op modes—the only real difference between this and some smartphone versions.
But swinging your arms instead of swiping your fingers just isn’t enough to sell me on this game at this price. I could just pick up my phone or iPad and do the same exact thing with a lot less effort—and for one-tenth the price. Bright, colorful, easy to pick up, and initially fun to play, Fruit Ninja Kinect is a solidly built game. But given its quickly dissipating appeal and minimal replayability, I don’t see why you’d pick this up when you can get virtually the same experience—and a lot cheaper—on your smartphone.
SUMMARY: Fruit Ninja Kinect is just as fun as the smartphone app, but it isn’t worth the bloated price.
- THE GOOD: Just as much fun as the iPhone app…
- THE BAD: …for the same amount of time and 10 times the price
- THE UGLY: You after sweating from ferociously chopping in your living room for a couple of hours
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