A few months ago, I joined the video game elite and picked up a 250GB Xbox with Kinect bundle. I grew up with PlayStations, but the controller-free part of the Kinect (as opposed to the PlayStation Move and Wii) really appealed to me.
The system came with Kinect Adventures, which is actually a pretty impressive game, to be honest. But really, Kinect is the impressive part. For starters, you can setup your profile with Kinect, and the system reads your face. This means, when we have friends over, as soon as I step in front of the screen to play my turn, the system ‘sees’ that it’s me, and uses my profile. I’m not kidding.
The other impressive feature is the accuracy. Even little things like scratching my nose or drinking a beer during play – my on-screen avatar mimics the action perfectly. It’s a completely new way of thinking about video games. This past weekend my buddy was over and brought his 15-month-old son with him. As we were playing Kinect Sports (I just got it, it’s sweet, too), I realized that it’s entirely possible his son will grow up not knowing what to do with a video game controller. It will feel foreign in his hands. Of course, it immediately reminded me of this scene from Back To The Future:
Of course, currently, the Xbox isn’t entirely controllable via Kinect. You still have to use buttons to turn it on, and most parts of the system still require that you use your controller. However, the Kinect capabilities are being included in more parts every day.
It’s also not just motion sensing. Kinect also listens to you, so that you can control your system by voice commands. Here’s a quick video demonstration of this from my friend James Whatley. Speaking of, Kinect also does video calling – James and I have done a couple video calls, on our TVs, through Kinect. It’s brilliant.
If you have an Xbox, get a Kinect. If you don’t have either, go get one. They’re sick.