Zero Punctuation: Kinect

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I definitely agree that the Kinect is biased against tall people. I'm only 5'8" myself (which is not very short, I know, but is short in comparison to Yahtzee's hulking 6'5" frame) and only after fusing with the back wall of the living room did I (just!) manage for Kinect to read my body -- and even then my feet are usually cut off. Not a problem at first, until the game requires me to move around. I can only imagine the frustration the taller (than me) folk have. I've only ever played Dance Central with the Kinect (because a dancing game is best suited for a full body tracking device, and every other game should have some kind of tangible controller - period) and I can definitely see the advantage that my shorter friends have over taller me in trying to get the game to read my movements. And that's a game that involves a lot of moving -- its a shame that even the games with the simpler movements still won't read a taller person as well.

Clearly Kinect is intended for children. Not even because its a gimmicky motion control system trying to grab the "we-too-are targeting-children-and-families" group that the Wii went after, or that it lacks challenging games that would be more suited for the "we-take-gaming-seriously" type. Basically, if the only people who can use your system best are five feet and under, you're targeting a very specific group of people.

Controllers don't discriminate. Ever. Just saying.

geizr:
One could use such games to do things like actually learning how to dance, learning some martial arts, or, as mentioned, just engaging in some fun exercise(imagine a sci-fi space shooter with some rhythmically pumping trance or electronica that you have to actually dance to control, and I mean really dance, not the elephant-stomping DDR-style dancing).

This would be pretty cool. And to be honest, Dance Central does feel a lot like DANCING. DDR is obviously stupid (I've never liked it) but DC is damn near addicting. I don't know if you've ever played, but its really the only thing Kinect has going for it (and probably the only truly positive experience I've had with motion controls). Full body tracking makes a difference as oppose to "waggle waggle remote" and "stomp stomp on pad". Those commercials are cheesy, but it really is a fun experience. There's a challenge in nailing the moves and getting perfect scores, but there's also just shameless booty shaking fun to be had with friends. If nothing else, I'm glad the Kinect was made for that ONE game (and its upcoming sequels).

After that though, much like you said, motion controls can go fall in a ditch.

brinvixen:
Controllers don't discriminate. Ever. Just saying.

one of the reasons I am unlikely to ever own a Kinect.

I didn't know Yahztee and I were the same height, but I have a fairly small place to begin with. So either way, I'm boned. Either for my height, my inability to afford a place with a large space for Kinect (and I live in a town where real estate is at a premium) or both.

Plus, while I think Yahtzee's using the word "immersion" wrong, I really do enjoy sitting on my couch playing. If I'm REALLY feeling frisky, I break out Rock Band's drums and sit on a stool, instead.

While it's not intended for me (I don't desire to be active while gaming), there's some stuff I'd love to explore, but my height automatically precludes me.

It used to piss me off in arcades, too. Some of the cooler games had height/weight restrictions I couldn't meet.

I think Microsoft showcased an attachment to the Kinect that lowered the amount of room you needed to use the device at the last E3. Or perhaps I just imagined that in an attempt to salvage the idea.

DolpinWacker64:
Seriously, the Kinect's recognition software is crap unless you stand WITHIN THE DESIGNATED AREA!

Isn't that a bit like saying your car's handling is crap unless you sit in the driver's seat?

We were denied the Mental Image of Yahtzee trying to play one of the dance games.

canadamus_prime:
Wow nobody got banned this week, that's certainly a first

tee hee hee see what I did there

Its funny because its not the first time, yout joke is invalid.

I honestly think that motion gaming has a place in gaming, the thing is that the technology needed isn't here yet.

Ok yes, BUT...that Steel Battalion thing might be cool.

imnotparanoid:

canadamus_prime:
Wow nobody got banned this week, that's certainly a first

tee hee hee see what I did there

Its funny because its not the first time, yout joke is invalid.

I already knew that! Killjoy!

And thank you, Yahtzee, for saving me a motherlode of cash. I didn't care for the Kinect when it first came out, I cared even less once I saw its launch lineup, the only vaguely interesting title for it out there is Child of Eden...

So, yeah. Not buying extra hardware I'll barely even use. I've fallen into that trap often enough with my berjillion plastic controllers for music games I'm stuck playing alone.

Excuse me for a moment, I'll go cower in shame and self-loathing. Thank you.

Yahtzee liked the Rise of Nightmares?? Well, then again he'd prefer to play it with a controller instead of kinect which I totally agree with him on. They should make two versions of a game just for the sake of it, but you know if the game is that fun then it's worth getting hurt playing (literally).

Sentox6:

DolpinWacker64:
Seriously, the Kinect's recognition software is crap unless you stand WITHIN THE DESIGNATED AREA!

Isn't that a bit like saying your car's handling is crap unless you sit in the driver's seat?

You should watch Mythbusters, they seem to get good vehicle handling without even being in the car... of course they do it with a remote control...Damn it, I forgot where I was going with this. Mythbusters is awesome I guess...

Goodness. I actually laughed. A lot.

It turns out, when he isn't making the exact same jokes/criticisms he makes about every single shooter ever, he's still witty and entertaining!

I'm glad I didn't give up on watching it anymore after all.

protogenxl:
We were denied the Mental Image of Yahtzee trying to play one of the dance games.

Be denied no longer (seek to 03:01).

Great vid, as always!
Next up do the dual shock 2 controller!

disappointed:
I can't help thinking motion controls will be brilliant in five to ten years when developers have got he hang of them.

Yeah, I remember that "in 5 to 10 years" everything was dropped in favour of some kind of new technology that sucked as well.

I bet we will drop 3D for some crazy 4D experiment that will never catch on.

Diegolomac:
Awww, Child of Eden and Rise of Nightmares? What about Fruit Ninja Kinect? That sounds more like the kind of stuff Yahtzee would like.

I'm kind of surprised he didn't cover The Gunstringer as well. That would fit in perfectly with Shooter Season 2011.

Also, this is just my own take, but I would love to see him review "El Shaddai" before the year's over, if only to see him bring out his "Like God of War But" stamp again.

cymonsgames:

Neverhoodian:
I cracked up at the "Well hello there, Counselor Troi" wanking scene (though I'm more of a Dr. Crusher fan myself).

Yeah, about that. Uh.... source?

It's from Star Trek: The Next Generation. Deanna Troi is the psychiatric counselor for the Enterprise.

While she does do some actual counseling from time to time, her character's primarily there for fanservice. Personally, I always thought Dr. Crusher was more attractive:
I must admit though, she has a pretty unfortunate last name for her profession.

geizr:

What I'm talking about would be a game where the progression of motion, postures, and gestures would look more like a smooth ballet or practicing of connected katas. The entire game would be an act of learning how to connect the motions and learning which motions, postures, and gestures naturally transition into each other such to create a singular, practiced flow of motion. Precision of angles, speed, and timing would all be important to the movements. Such a game could not only be entertaining but also provide great exercise, as well as improve dexterity and coordination. One could use such games to do things like actually learning how to dance, learning some martial arts, or, as mentioned, just engaging in some fun exercise(imagine a sci-fi space shooter with some rhythmically pumping trance or electronica that you have to actually dance to control, and I mean really dance, not the elephant-stomping DDR-style dancing).

Dance Central is almost what you're proposing, but from your post I kind of guess you haven't played it. The only trait missing is having more dance styles than coreography type ones (salsa, tango, etc). I've seen dance moves form that game make it into real life parties, so people some people are actually learning to dance a little better and have better sense of rhythm and coordination just from that game. I don't know how one would go about learning martial arts without destroying your living room in the process, but hey, I'm no desginer.

I'm surprised he quite liked Rise of Nightmares. From what I've seen of it, it looked pretty lame, even disregarding the Kinect controls.

He mentioned Giant's Causeway. OMGoodness.

Anyway, my xbox is in my room which doesn't have enough room for Kinect, but yeah I prefer Wii games when motion controls aren't overly used.

NameIsRobertPaulson:
Both the Kinect and the Move look awful, play awful, and are painful to use if you're taller than 6'1, or heavier than 250, or some weird combo. The Kinect refused to register half my movements because I'm 6'4 and 145 lbs. It thought I should either be wider or shorter, and adjusted things as such.

I'm 6'3 and 200lbs and I have to stand far, far away for Kinect to work ok. I also need a LOT of room.

Unfortunately there are a lot of poorly conceived Kinect games out there that make a mockery of it, but games like Dance Central really shine on a platform like Kinect. It's still in it's teething stages at the moment so I think people need to cut it a little slack.

The one thing that I see kinect benefiting from would be a peripheral along the lines of the Wii nun-chuck with no Wii remote. Sure everyone would scream "Ripoff of Wii/Move", but at least it will allow movement without requiring stupid body language, or holding a controller awkwardly in one hand. Also a start button would be nice. From the limited time playing on the kinect, trying to move about the menu by holding your hand over the screen felt like real life Fable. But even less fun.

It sounds like the usage of Kinect in Forza 4 would be pretty satisfactory for Yahtzee. Same goes for upcoming Steel Batallion and Mass Effect 3's inclusion of the thing.

Well this was certainly unexpected. Nevertheless, I still found it to be throughly entertaining.

I too think that motion control would be better off as something that would simply compliment the experience.

Take Dead Space: Extraction for example. It's a rail shooter and it is on the Wii. Thus, it makes sense for it to utilize motion controls.

Now take Donkey Kong Country Returns. It's a sidescroller/platformer and it is also on the Wii. Still, it wouldn't make sense for it to utilize motion controls.

So even though the Wii does have motion controls, the developers aren't trying to cram them into games where they don't belong. At least not anymore.

Edit: Sorry about the double post. I thought the website had eaten my post somehow.

I rather enjoyed Rise of Nightmares it was pretty fun for a movement controlled game, good workout too.

To quote your Lords of Shadows review, Yahtzee, this Kinect review is "attempting to jump on the bandwagon so late that the band has completed three sold out world tours and sold their wagon to a scrap dealer." You should've ripped this piece of gaming abortion the moment it came out, man. But oh well, better to shit on it late than to shit on it never. XD

One of the BIGGEST hard-on I have against Project Natal is the fact that the end product seemed to be cobbled up together in waaaaaaay too much of a hurry to meet the Evil Empire (read: Microsoft) deadline. The demo showed so much promise, but for some odd reason, all of those promises took a swan dive into a pit of spikes filled with venomous snakes come launch day. What the HELL happened, Microsoft? Was someone asleep on the wheel? Or do you just feed on crushed hopes, broken dreams and tears of gamers everywhere?

To bad he didn't do The Gunstringer. It has fairly simple movements and you can sitdown while playing it.

rangerman351:
To bad he didn't do The Gunstringer. It has fairly simple movements and you can sitdown while playing it.

It kinda defeats the purpose of the Kinect as a new type of controller, doesn't it? Instead of working properly on select games, it should have, to quote a certain meme, WORK PROPERLY ON ALL THE GAMES. XD

To be completely honest, even though I spent a shitload of money on the whole Playstation Move thing (yes, I know this topic is about Kinect but they're pretty much the same thing), I found Child of Eden far easier to play with a regular old controller. I'm guessing it's probably more to do with the slippery Move controls than my muscle memory playing Rez. Also because I live in a small fucking apartment.

Still, Yahtzee mentioned my two favorite games. Yay.

He might be able to control the game better if the kinect weren't facing the wrong way around.

rickicker:
To quote your Lords of Shadows review, Yahtzee, this Kinect review is "attempting to jump on the bandwagon so late that the band has completed three sold out world tours and sold their wagon to a scrap dealer." You should've ripped this piece of gaming abortion the moment it came out, man. But oh well, better to shit on it late than to shit on it never. XD

He was probably waiting for the wave of shovelware to rush through so that he could review something actually worth reviewing. He can't really find much to talk about from Kinectimals or Kinect Sports when he's already reviewed identical games recently.

rickicker:

rangerman351:
To bad he didn't do The Gunstringer. It has fairly simple movements and you can sitdown while playing it.

It kinda defeats the purpose of the Kinect as a new type of controller, doesn't it? Instead of working properly on select games, it should have, to quote a certain meme, WORK PROPERLY ON ALL THE GAMES. XD

It's a new technology it needs time to test itself and secondly I've played enough games to know that some games don't even work with a regular controller.

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