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Star Wars Kinect Preview

/ Jul 4th, 2011 No Comments

It’s hard to argue that the Kinect device is an unmitigated success for Micrsoft and the Xbox 360 platform, but we’ve really be dying to see some second generation showcase titles emerge. LucasArts is working on Star Wars Kinect, which offers the opportunity to enter into the Star Wars world and use the force or battle with a lightsaber. Promising gamers the chance to meet iconic characters like Yoda and battle the likes of droids and other galatic evil-doers, the game was one of the more anticipated demos at E3 2011.

Originally designed to be one of the launch games to accompany the XBox 360 Kinect motion system, Kinect: Star Wars has now been slated for release near the end of 2011. Fans everywhere are anticipating what the game will bring and looking forward to this unique motion game from Terminal Reality and LucasArts. While the game was unveiled at E3, many of us that got to play the game at the booth came away feeling befuddled and disappoint with the game at this point in its lifecycle.

We know that players will get to play as Jedi and wield lightsabers that they will control using the unique motion capture technology built into the Kinect. It isn’t a lot to go on, but for all of us who spent our childhoods in our rooms wielding imaginary lightsabers or attempting to use the force to move objects with our minds, it’s more than enough to generate significant interest.

There are rumors going around right now that in addition to lightsaber fights, players will get the chance to experience pod racing as well. This is certainly generating some excitement, and while this is still currently a rumor, it has been enough to set message boards ablaze with speculation as to how the feature will be introduced and exactly how it will work. There is also a lot of buzz going around about the supposed ability to play as a Rancor, something that delights anyone who’s ever longed to experience a Star Wars game from this unique perspective.

While the demo at the show went for about 10-15 minutes, we can saw that the controls were far from perfected. You expect a level of responsiveness out of Kinect games now that warrant the hype, which this title thus far failed to achieve. Bizarrely, to turn on your lightsaber you have to have one hand held out while the other is in your pocket. You can only imagine how odd this might appear to someone walking into the room. While swinging the lightsaber around to deflect droid laser fire we found that the game was super laggy and failed to be as responsive as needed to even pass the demo training level. The game felt like it was on rails since you couldn’t control the camera nor really move your character more than lunging around to defend yourself. The force powers to move objects was the highlight of the demo which worked decently, but again, the lag really cut into any enthusiasm we experienced.

Almost everything about Kinect: Star Wars is a mystery at this point because it felt like we demoed a game not even 25% finished, but already fans are chomping at the bit to see what the game will have to offer. Star Wars is one of the biggest movie, game, and merchandise franchises in the world, so we fully expect the game to eventually be done with some polish, mostly catering to younger gamers. Only time will tell what Kinect Star Wars will bring, with high hopes there’s a lot of improvement between now and the final release date later in 2011.

Will Fairway

Will Fairway

Will Fairway is literally the most exciting and electric person to have ever lived, period.


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