An instructional game for making fruit salad?
Fruit Ninja Kinect, from Halfbrick Studios, brings the casual fruit slicing goodness of the hit smartphone game to the big screen on Xbox360. What’s more is that you now get to use your entire body to slice those pesky fruit, not just your finger. Aren’t video games great…
The quick hit action of Fruit Ninja has not really changed much during its transference to the home console. The basic premise remains the same, as does the overall look of the game. Players have to slice various different fruits that are thrown into the air to achieve impressive scores, whilst avoiding trying to slice one of the bombs that occasionally gets tossed in.
But the finger action of the smartphone versions is replaced here with entire body movement. Prepare for some potential bumps and bruises as flailing arms and legs are all thrown around the room in an attempt to chop up apples, pears, watermelons or any other fruit that may pop onto the screen. It is not exactly the most graceful of control schemes, but it suits the Kinect peripheral down to the ground. There are no complex movements needed here – if you see it on the screen, just hit it. The precision is perfectly suited to the game and it can even be played with very little trouble in rooms which may have been too small for previous Kinect games (as long as you don’t mind the physical damage caused by leaping around a small room).
The game manages to pack in a nice selection of different modes, some with timers, some with lives. But perhaps the most entertainment comes from the included multiplayer, pf which there is versus and co-op.
Whilst it could be said that having two people standing next to each other whilst waving there arms and legs at virtual fruits would be the recipe for a visit to the emergency room, the action lends itself very well to a party atmosphere. Co-op mode will see two players working together to get a high score. However, versus mode will see different coloured fruit be launched onto the screen and players having to slice their own colour. Things very quickly descend into chaos with this level of simple competition.
Playing Fruit Ninja Kinect is not just about chasing that high score and then bettering it though. There are a selection of unlockables that will sweeten certain challenges within the game, including different blade types for your on-screen knife, adding something to the games longevity.
However, at its core Fruit ninja Kinect is still a casual game and as such many players will find it difficult to keep coming back for more. The game has a brilliant “quick hit” feeling about it, which works great on the mobile platforms, but less so on the home consoles.
Sophisticated it is not, and constantly revisited it won’t be. But Fruit Ninja Kinect is a party game that will not only provide hours of fun in a party environment, but also impressively show what your Kinect unit is capable of. 800 MSPoints may not be the 59p that the game costs on iPhone, but it is a good price for watching friends slap each other silly whilst trying to chop up virtual fruit.