All About Kinect Sports Rivals
Kinect Sports is a motion controlled sports game played with the Xbox camera controller. This means you play the different activities without holding anything, while the game detects your bodily movement.
After Kinect Sports and Kinect Sports Season 2 on the Xbox 360 the new version of the game is about to be released for the Xbox One. The new console from Microsoft includes the Kinect 2.0 camera by default and offers a higher definition for more accurate game play.
To start the new Kinect Sports Rivals game you first scan each family member in with the Kinect camera. This creates a digitized version of you that will be used in the game. Football, Bowling and Tennis return in updated form while new activities Target Shooting, Climbing and Wake Racing expand the Kinect Sports Rivals cannon. For families this will attract a wider range of players, something that is reflected on a greater focus on competitive play in this version of the game — think FIFA rather than Wii-Sports.
Each of the sports lets you learn the required motions as you go, but largely you perform the same action as you would in real life and the Kinect controller interprets that into the game. This means that Kinect Sports Rivals can be a good entry point for those in the family (whether young or old) who haven’t played many games.
As you progress you can unlock special power-ups, outfits and equipment for your in-game character. Along with this there is also a greater emphasis on developing your skill in each activity. Perhaps more than previous technology players that invest time and effort will see a more tangible return in their performance. For families this genuine competitive edge works well and offers an opportunity for certain family members to shine — whether that’s a competitive dad or rising football enthusiast daughter.
The team behind Kinect Sports Rivals, Rare, have a long history with family games are are based in the UK. We had the chance to talk to Danny Isaac, Executive Producer for the game and ask him about the creative talent working on the game. He also talked about how they use test families to hone the experience and how this had affected the finished product.
As mentioned by Isaac, families should note that some consideration should be made about the location and set-up of the Kinect controller. Although the Xbox One version requires less space than on Xbox 360, the room should still be well lit and large enough to accommodate a couple of players stood up in front of the TV to get the most out of it.
Kinect Sports Rivals is rated PEGI 12 for “Non realistic looking violence towards human characters” in the UK. In the US it is rated E10 with the following descriptor: “In the rock-climbing game, players can pull opponents off the wall, causing them to fall and burst into pixels. Players must also avoid electrified handholds that can shock players’ character; frequent cries of pain can be heard.”
Kinect Sports Rivals will be released in the UK on 11th April.