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Kinect Rush: A Disney Pixar Adventure Review

by on March 20, 2012
 

Kinect-Rush-ReviewGame: Kinect Rush: A Disney Pixar Adventure

Developer: Asobo Studio

Publisher: Microsoft Studios

Availble on: Xbox 360 with Kinect Only

Not that long ago, the wonderful Kinect Disneyland Adventures was released, bringing Disney characters to life with an unprecedented level of interaction that could only be bettered by spending huge amounts of money and going to visit Disneyland itself.

However, animation has moved on and whilst people like myself may remember Mickey Mouse and Co. as fondly as ever, the kids today are all about Disney Pixar, so along come Asobo Studio to try and create a Pixar adventure all of their own.

STORY: Although the actual story is paper thin, there has been an effort made to create the illusion that you are in a real-life park, designed for fans of the Pixar universe. From the get go you’ll create a child-like avatar via the Kinect sensor bar, which is probably the best and easiest creation to date. After that’s done, you’ll get off the bus and walk (or run) into the park. Exploring each Pixar franchise is easy enough, you’ll chat to other children in the park who will come up with fantastical adventures based on each movie, which you’ll instantly act out; there’s no loading and it’s quite impressive.

GRAPHICS: You get exactly what you’d expect from a Pixar adventure, stunning visuals. Mixed in with the assets directly taken from the movies, the newly animated adventures are crystal clear and beautiful. No expense spared, you’re definitely going to feel as though you are inside the adventure with all the returning characters from each movie.

As mentioned, creating your own avatar (you can just pick a pre-rendered one if you wish) is easy and the results are surprisingly accurate. Although as with most Kinect games, if you wear glasses you’ll be expected to take them off for the creation process, thus rendering yourself nigh-on blind, but at least the end result is then a nice surprise.

SOUND: The people who played the characters in the movies return, which is a superb, if obvious, touch. Whether you are running around with Dug from Up, or Lightning McQueen from Cars, the performances are brilliant. The soundtrack is slightly more of a mixed bag, with some sweeping orchestral compositions in places, yet some generic menu music in others.

GAMEPLAY: Walking around the park is a simple enough task, move your arms in a walking motion or running motion to move and turn your shoulders to change direction, it isn’t at all strenuous. Getting to the actual adventures however, well, move over Zumba Fitness Rush, because Kinect Rush is just as much of a workout. Be prepared to exercise, and if you want to get decent scores, sweat whilst you do it.

The actual adventures take place as mini games, though that’s a bit unfair, as some of the adventures take nearer the ten minute mark to get through; much more than the traditional mini-game you may be used to. There’s plenty of variation in the actual gameplay too, you won’t just be running into the screen and jumping around. For example, in Up you’ll have to stop and solve, albeit very basic, puzzles. These involve using your limbs in a less flailing manner, holding onto things, throwing things, you get the picture.

With the combined worlds of The Incredibles, Up, Ratatouille, Cars and Toy Story to pool from, there’s plenty of variation in how you play the adventures too. Better still, some of the adventures have had new areas crafted specifically for the game, like the Omnidroid factory on Sydrome’s Island. It all adds up to a level of content that has had care lavished upon it.

Every time you complete an adventure, your total score is added up and if you’ve done well enough you’ll unlock a new adventure. Thankfully this isn’t too tricky, so you’ll rarely be stuck replaying adventures over and over just to get to the next one. Other than that, there aren’t too many shocks or surprises in Kinect Rush, cars race, adventurers…go on adventures, and so on.

There will be frustration in some of the adventures though, expect to fall through gaps a few times in the Up sections. It’s a little odd perhaps, that a game so clearly aimed at a younger audience would even allow for those frustrating moments to exist, but the reset times are mercifully short. One would have to assume that these moments are there to create more variation in times and scores, but nonetheless, it is odd.

One thing worth mentioning is that, as usual, you’ll need plenty of space for Kinect Rush. Even in my modest living room I had issues with the jumping at times, it not picking me up and having to jump three or four times to register one. Sure, I could have moved my furniture around but most Kinect titles don’t require that. Worth thinking about if you have a small playing space, of course.

LONGEVITY: With the five franchises to pull from, each with 6-7 adventures each, there’s certainly no shortage of content in Kinect Rush. Add to this the fact each adventure is score based and there are plenty of hidden collectibles to find and you’ll probably be happy with the content on offer. Local multiplayer adds to the fun and, if you’ve got a few kids in the house, they’ll lap Kinect Rush up.

VERDICT: Kinect Rush is a fun title with so much character that you’ll adore it as much as your kids. The adult in you will love being able to play with your younger family members, and the kids will love playing with their Pixar friends. While it’ll keep a younger mind captivated for a while, the older generation will want to move back to the more adult games fairly quickly.

When all is said and done, Kinect Rush is aimed at a young audience and achieves exactly what it sets out to do. Let your children go and spend time with their Pixar friends, when a game has been developed with as much care as Kinect Rush has, it’d be a shame not to.

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