Published on July 5th, 2011 | by Bags Hooper2
Hands-on ‘n Slicin’ ‘Fruit Ninja Kinect’ Preview (XBLA)
I’m die-hard Fruit Ninja fan. When the folks at Halfbrick Studios first introduced me to the game in early 2010, all I could think was, “Holy Crap! I love slicing fruits!” I loved eating fruits as a kid, but never slicing fruits. I was the lazy kid who left that job to his mom, while I spent my time playing video games and basketball. Yes, I’m shaking my head at myself in shame. However, Fruit Ninja allowed me to slice fruits while gaming.
One word. Bliss.
My mom would be so pleased to know how much I’ve matured. If only, there was a way to eat the fruits after, I’d be in heaven.
Now, Fruit Ninja is coming to Kinect on XBLA. At first I was apprehensive. I love Fruit Ninja. But, Kinect? Meh. Conceptually, Kinect is great, but it feels like the technology and firmware is about a year or so out from being perfected. Plus, forcing a dual-thumbstick game to be Kinect driven is like asking a dog to drive a car. It just won’t work.
However, Fruit Ninja Kinect actually works out to be the perfect Kinect driven game. Slicing fruit wildly with your hands in broad strokes works with near 1-to-1 response. What’s even cooler is that the game shows you a shadowy outline of your body as you slice the fruits. So gamers will able to see what they are doing as they do it. If only this was available on some of the Wii games when the console first launched, perhaps there would not have been so many accidents. Gamers can also adjust the game to show a more boxy digitized outline of their bodies instead of the shadow.
The game has all the features and modes of iPhone/iPad game. You can play in classic or arcade mode, depending on how much you like the threat of slicing a bomb. You can also play in head-to-head and coop mode, which is a nice addition. Instead of seeing one shadow in the background of the screen, you will see two outlines. It’s kind of awesome to be able to watch a mirrored version of yourself and your opponent and see the different techniques you use for slicing fruit. Some gamers will move more like a robot (I’m thinking of the Dave Chappelle sketch as I write this with Ashy Larry doing the Robot through the club), while other gamers will go for more broad stroke karate chops. The game doesn’t pick up mini-movements so expect a workout, especially in the summer heat.
In competitive mode, fruits have a different hue denoting player one and two. If you strike the wrong fruit you will get penalized. However, there are some fruits which are freebies that any player can strike.
The Kinect seems designed for a game like Fruit Ninja and this will definitely be one title that will get plenty of replay value with a modest cost of 800 points. So step aside Rock Band and Just Dance gamers, Fruit Ninja will dominate the party if a Kinect is around. Unlike Dance Central, bashful gamers won’t have a problem slicing fruit. By the way, Sensei is back with even more fruit facts. Can you say awesome? Hell yea!
Fruit Ninja Kinect hits XBLA’s Summer of Arcade on August 10.