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Impression: Kinect Sports Rivals

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#1 vetDirtyLarry

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 03:33

So I rented Kinect Sports Rivals as I figured why not try Kinect for motion based games since I now own it.

 

Simply put, Kinect 2.0 has a long way to go from a motion/gesture based perspective. It was downright frustrating to say the very least.

 

Credit where credit is due. The actual character creation aspect in the very beginning was nothing short of absolutely amazing. I wish I took a picture of the Avatar it created of me*. The way it does create ones Avatar is just pretty damn special actually. You really have to see it in action to truly appreciate it, but the best way to describe it is it made a digital pin art that was actually precise...

 

FB,1428,56,pin-art-civi-tablo-hediyelik-

 

Just imagine a digital real time version of that of your face. Then it creates a pretty damn accurate likeness of you, but stylized to match the art style of Kinect Sports.

 

I honestly thought after seeing the character creation go down that the rest of the game was going to be amazing. Boy, was I dead wrong.

 

I could go on and on about every single thing that was wrong. Instead I will just say it is not accurate at all. Not at all.

 

So here is the condensed version...

 

During the wave running training which I was forced to start with, a message kept popping up about how it could not see the lower half of my body even though the Kinect Camera image on screen was showing it was seeing my whole body no issues. It was showing my whole outline, etc. Something was up...

 

So I quit the game and recalibrated my Kinect. I thought for sure that would help.

 

Same exact experience with the wave running game. Just no precision at all. I constantly felt as if I was fighting it. I found myself contorting my body to try and go straight when I should not have needed to do so. Even forcing myself to just stay straight and steer with my arms was just not really working. I have to give credit where it is due however. It did see when I was opening and closing my hand for the "gas pedal," which is pretty impressive. It was just the whole steering aspect of things was shaky. Which is kind of damn important overall.

 

The shooting gallery game was just atrocious. It relies on precision and was anything but precise. It kept thinking I was shooting when I was not. It was very jittery and slow to react to my movements. In later rounds it actually asks you to shoot targets in a sequence. It was impossible to do so because it kept thinking I was shooting when I was not. It was truly frustrating and it seemed like it should be very easy to pull off based on the gas pedal in the waverunner part. But yet it did not work as it was supposed to work.

 

I once again quit the game and recalibrated my Kinect. I REALLY thought for sure that would have to help.

 

Repeat all of the experiences above with slightly less frustration and that is what happened with my second go around. Recalibrating Kinect did nothing.

 

I then decided to try bowling. Surely that would be good right??

 

It is with bowling that my nightly experiment with Kinect 2.0 and motion controls abruptly came to a hault. After bowling 6 frames I asked myself why am I doing this when I have done it a few years ago already? The bowling was no better than the Wii Sports bowling. In fact, it might have even been less accurate. I actually feel like Wii Sports recognized subtle changes in the arm swing like tilting or coming with a spin better than Kinect Sports did. So where was the innovation? Sure I was not holding a controller in my hand as one does with the Wii, and yes that is pretty impressive when one sits back and thinks about it, however not having a controller made no difference in the overall experience.

 

If Kinect 2.0 is supposed to be this precise new way of tracking motion I would think it would be capable of at least doing as well as the Wii did. I did not feel that it pulled that off at all.

 

So I ejected the game and put it back in it's GameFly sleeve and promptly uninstalled all 9.9 GB from my One's drive. Yes, this impression is not a complete one as I never bothered checking out the last 3 events as they were the ones I was least interested in any way. I somewhat regret not checking out the Tennis now, but I just knew based on what I just spent the last two hours on there was no way I was going to check out the game again after tonight. I decided to send it back right away to get an open GameFly Queue space.

 

* I do wish I took a screenshot / video /cell phone shot of my Avatar before sealing the GameFly envelope. Lesson learned.

 

Full Disclaimer - I actually purchased the original Kinect 1.0 but could not set it up as it turned out I did not have enough room to do so as Kinect 1.0 required more space than I had. It has been advertised they greatly improved the space needed for Kinect 2.0 and one did not need as much room as they did for 2.0.

 

So perhaps I just need more room in my TV room for Kinect 2.0 to work. I leave that for the reader to decide...

LIVING_ROOM-Kinect2.jpg

 

So maybe I do not have enough room for Kinect 2.0 even though MS has said I should with the improvements made to it, and my completely negative experience is all a result of this. If that is the case then so be it.

 

Whatever it is, I was not only left unimpressed by Kinect 2.0's motion capabilities, I actually left feeling they were pretty damn bad.

 

So will continue using it for my voice as I have been lately. I can say with the utmost of sincerity I will not be using it for any motion based stuff any-time soon, if ever again.




#2 ReptileX

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 04:12

It's too bad that this is the reality of the console too, I really wanted to be left with the impression that K2 would be a step in motion sensing immersion. DL in your opinion does knowing this devalue what you think of the xbox one?

 

Either Kinect got a foot fetish from that girl and got distracted or its as you say :laugh:



#3 blerk

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 04:42

It is a well known fact that the Kinect will simply refuse to operate if there is a Mac (or two) in the room. The Kinect camera is less of a device that you can use to game, but rather it is designed to be Microsoft's little anti-Apple spy in your living room. Kinect v3 will be able to detect iPhones and Android phones inside pockets.  :shiftyninja:



#4 +mram

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 04:43

I bought a Kinect V1 for my 360.  I had what I thought was a decently sized living room with probably more space than yours.  It couldn't see my kids well.  I ended up moving the 360 to another room where I could play around with the architecture and at least get it functional.  Success.

 

Then we actually played the games.  It was imprecise and basically like playing a Wii.  I know people won't like that comparison, but really, seriously, what you see in the game is an approximation of what you're doing in real life.   Motion controls I get, playing games I do not.  The best happiness we got was something like Kinectimals where my kids could pet the animals and go "awww."  Then they pick up a controller and play a real game.

 

I don't regret buying it, as it was a lesson learned and I do like playing with tech.  It however promptly got removed, the games forgotten, and never played again.  My obsessive kids never once asked to play any of that.  To me, personally, that says a lot.  (5 and 10 yr old, just in full disclosure)

 

But when I heard the XBone had a kinect built in and cost more (not to mention being not being backward compatible) I knew something was really wrong.  It's like forcing the game devs to build it on, and forcing the consumer to eat the price.  If the Kinect were that good, we'd all just buy one, like a headphone or a keyboard.  But the reality is like above.  It's good as a tool, as motion sensors, as recognition, but I wouldn't pay 100$ extra for that.  I'd just pick up a controller and choose my login, or pick up a controller and move my selection. 

 

In any case, I'm sorry to hear it was bad for you.

 

I hope MS gets their head out of their butts and sells an XB1 console without the Kinect and lowers the price. 



#5 vcfan

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 05:02

I bought this game,because kids,(ok I admit,i like it too).

 

the only game I had trouble with was soccer,where kicks would go sometimes haywire. could be because the way I have Kinect setup, sometimes it doesn't see my feet. I have it setup in a big open room, minimal furniture and lots of light.

 

gamewise, I would say its pretty good, not amazing, although definitely lots of fun to be had. loads times are kinda annoying.



#6 Vandalsquad

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 05:12

Definitely not enough space with the lounge and coffee table shadowing in. I have no problems with an area say with those 2 items removed and the back lounge pushed further back another metre or so. But I also play with other people when playing.. Never tested if it needs as much room solo.

 

Outside of maybe before going out and a few drinks it gets no use from me but.



#7 jakem1

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 06:27

I originally had my Kinect placed in a similar fashion to yours.  I thought it was OK sitting on my TV stand as it was just over 2 feet from the ground and seemed to recognise all my gestures.  However, I ran into problems with the Kinect Rivals Preview and struggled to get it working despite multiple attempts to recalibrate.  In the end I bought a stand that sits the sensor on top of the TV and it made a huge difference.  The wave running game was immediately responsive.

 

Here's the stand I bought:

 

http://www.amazon.co...one accessories

 

Your room looks like it's the same size as mine or slightly bigger so I don't think distance is the issue.



#8 MikeChipshop

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 06:48

I've had pretty similar issues to you, however, like jakem1, i had it where you had it and it's performance was shaky at best. This includes voice command. I bought this and the performance jumped considerably and i've noticed none of the issues you're unhappy with.

 

I honestly think MS should include some sort of TV mount in the box, even just a cheap crappy one, to alleviate some of these issues.



#9 neoadorable

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 07:01

Thanks for sharing, nice living room, very homey!



#10 Audioboxer

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 12:33

It is a well known fact that the Kinect will simply refuse to operate if there is a Mac (or two) in the room. The Kinect camera is less of a device that you can use to game, but rather it is designed to be Microsoft's little anti-Apple spy in your living room. Kinect v3 will be able to detect iPhones and Android phones inside pockets.  :shiftyninja:

 

This got a laugh :laugh:

 

At least they finally got it out, not launching with a Kinect game was crazy. I think the real sad thing here isn't the usual iffy motion controls we always see (using a casual newspaper review on purpose), but that RARE is stuck doing this and not another Banjo or Viva Pinata.



#11 ndoggfromhell

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 12:44

I have a huge space infront of my tv in my living room and I have to say the Kinect is pretty accurate.  Lighting helps (consistent placement too)  On sunny days I have to recalibrate it.  Anytime we play at night we have consistent lighting and it works really good.  



#12 spenser.d

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 13:04

Polygon ran an article saying something similar. They thought the controls were better than the original Kinect, but still not great, which is a shame.

Here is it: http://www.polygon.c...ll-isnt-serious

Hopefully it gets better in the future. Sounds like I'll be passing on this game though.

#13 +patseguin

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 13:23

I played the game shortly last night before bed. I did the avatar creation and it didn't really look like me aside from my glasses. I only did the waverunner part so far and I thought it was astounding. The graphics are amazing and the kinect controls are flawless.



#14 OP vetDirtyLarry

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 15:54

Thanks for the replies so far everyone. And thanks for keeping it mature and civil. I did not post this to just say it was not a good game and Kinect is doomed, I posted it as I also did want to hear if it is perhaps my Kinect setup as to why I did not think it was a good game as I am no doubt aware of the fact it could be.

 

So it sounds like the people who have their Kinect mounted on the top of their TV's who also have a somewhat similar setup to mine are not having as many issues. I do have my PS4 camera on top of my TV since it was not as big, and it also did come with a mount unlike Kinect, so perhaps one day down the line if a motion based game is released that I just have to play, I will consider picking up the mount itself.

 

I have thought about it some more and decided for now, especially since I do not have kids, I am just going to use the voice control stuff, which luckily the layout of my room does not have much to do with things, and just leave the motion control stuff for others to enjoy. I could perhaps get it working with the mount on top of my TV, but then I start to think it really does not matter right now as I would not use it anyway. If and when a killer game is released I will revisit this fact.

 

Thanks again for the replies and hopefully maybe this saves someone some time down the road. If you experience similar issues to the Kinect 2.0 not being very precise or responsive with motion controls, strongly consider picking up the mount for the top of your TV.



#15 trooper11

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 16:03

Its good to get these impressions out so anyone thinking of buying this game will know what they are in for.

It seems like there is yet again a wide range of experiences. Some have run into nothing but problems and crap, some have only run into a couple of issues, and then some have not run into issues.

As long as even a single person has a terrible experience with it, Kinect will never be an acceptable addition to the Xbox platform as far as motion gaming goes. Even if the fix is something like rearranging your furniture, most people have no interest in being forced to work around such things, not to mention that MS was trying to make the experience less intrusive this time around. Bad experiences offer plenty of fuel to the idea that Kinect must be removed from the package. Not looking good.

What gets me though is that in some cases, it sounds worse than the first Kinect. The OP mentioned how poor the bowling experience was and yet Kinect Sports bowling with the first Kinect never gave me issues. The fact that it does now just makes you scratch your head.

I doubt I will buy this game unless its heavily discounted. My only experience with the game is the wave racing in the preview, which actually worked well for me. Clearly though, the rest did not turn out well at all.