Mar 24, 2014

X-Box: Here's Your Audience. Where're My Freakin' Games?

For years now, I’ve been lamenting the non-existence of a particular game type for the X-Box Kinect.

For those of you still playing Galaga on your Atari, let me explain the potential magic that is X-Box Kinect.

At its heart, X-Box is a game system – like Playstation, Nintendo, Atari, Intellivision. You remember those clunky boxes that hooked to your television that allowed us to play Pac-Man when we were teens? (Okay, when I was a teen.) Frogger? You remember Frogger?

The X-Box Kinect is all that and MORE. (Well, kinda.) The X-Box Kinect includes a camera that reads the players’ body movements. Get this! Instead of using a handheld controller, your body is the controller!!! You walk in place - your avatar walks in place. You reach out to turn a knob, your avatar reaches out to turn a knob. AWESOME!!!

Well, the system is fabulous. But a system is only as amazing as the games with which it is compatible. So at present, the sort of games available are cartoony, boring, incomplete... made for... who? Star Wars, Just Dance 4, Carnival, Haunted House. And very few new games are being made that are compatible with X-Box Kinect. I've been waiting for almost three years for some better games.

Let me paint another picture for you. I’m a dumpy, middle-aged mother of two teens. My days are torn between writing, cooking, gardening, antiquing, property management, and child rearing. (Note the absence of exercise in this daily regimen.) There is no travel in this scheme. There are few trips to the National Art Gallery – 2.5 hours away, money for gas, pre-planning. I don’t Zumba or rhumba, (or Roomba for that matter, although I’m saving my pennies). I want adventure in my life. I want world travel. I want – a reason to walk laps.

So where is the X-Box Kinect Google Earth? Where is the Kinect tour of the Louvre? Where is the Kinect Spelunking Adventure? Where is the X-Box Kinect Game of Nosey Neighbors? You know, the one where you walk, slink, and poke around inside houses that don’t belong to you? Where is Kinect Sims? Where is the mystery game in which the player moves around the small town, meeting and greeting the townsfolk, finding the homicide victim, solving the murder? Huh? Where is that?


It’s a cool game system. The current selection of games are decidedly lacking. I’d even go for a version of GTA (Grand Theft Auto) for Kinect. I’d be the one player who plays in peaceful mode, who lives in the mountains, eschewing the violence of the big city. Yeah, I might have to outrun some coyotes, but it’s a dog-eat-dog world out there. Get Kinected or get eaten.

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