Game review: Winter Stars – Kinect

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As I have awful hand eye co-ordination and I do next to no exercise I had a feeling I’d be making a complete fool of myself. But then I remembered how much “exercise” these games really are. Seeing as I usually like Olympics video games and love winter sport games, it was a bit of a no-brainer this game was going to be, if anything, a lot of fun.

The game starts off at a fair pace. After your tutorial you are kind of thrown in the deep end with no real easy race to allow you to get to grips with the controls more thoroughly. So the first tournament can be a bit of a drag if you’re as terrible as me.

The interface is probably the worst I’ve seen on kinect so far, it’s just so annoying selecting the wrong option because your hand was just inches off. The interface is all very neat with buttons close together but this makes it difficult to select the right option.

The graphics are decent, I mean they’re not terrible but they’re nowhere near the level of detail in the graphics of games such as Fallout and Metro 2033. However, it doesn’t take away from the game and I think better graphics would have probably gone unnoticed and unappreciated outside of the cut scenes. Then we get to the voice acting, it’s so cheesy and at times over the top that I just can’t take it seriously, it reminds me a bit of the Kingdom Hearts kind of genre. However, I’m pretty sure that all this would be great for younger age-groups.

The music in this game is decent but nothing as dramatic and spectacular as the music featured in games such as Final Fantasy. However the lack of music in the loading screens makes them plain boring. Although the loading screens aren’t very long, they are frequent but your achievements (medals won, time played etc) are shown in the top-right corner of the screen so it’s not that bad.

The tutorial in this game had me getting so frustrated at first because I just couldn’t get it right and I would have to repeat certain moves over and over until I finally got it. But when you get used to all the different commands this game can be a lot of fun. Whether you’re on your own or you’re playing with friends the game is fun – even for the more competitive. The game has plenty of events so you won’t get bored for a long time.

However, most of the time the game is very unresponsive and simply won’t do what you want it to at times. This, along with wading through pages of instructions before the event even starts, makes it very annoying!

Overall, I would give this game a 4/10 mainly because of the interface and responsiveness but when it does decide to do what you want it to do it can be a lot of fun.


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