Generally I am quite good at having five a day, however recently I have found myself slicing up so much fruit that I seem to be seeing it in my sleep, that though is what Fruit Ninja Kinect on Xbox LIVE Arcade will do to you, because once you start to chop, you can’t stop.
For those who haven’t played Fruit Ninja before, the basic idea of the game is to use your movement to karate chop bits of fruit which fly up onto the screen, while avoiding booby traps such as bombs. As you swipe at fruit you will gain extra points for slicing multiple fruit with one swipe, you can also get points from critical hits, although I have to admit I’m still not 100 percent sure how this is decided. Finally you can also get a large score by hitting a pomegranate, which stops on the screen and allows you to hit it as much as you can, with each hit counting as a point, after a while it explodes and adds to your score.
In classic mode, you fail by either hitting a bomb or failing to chop three bits of fruit before they fall out of the screen. It really is that simple.
Outside of the classic mode, developers Halfbrick have also included quite a few other modes which all add a lot to the game. First up is the Arcade mode, which basically sees you trying to rack up as large a score as possible before the time runs out. To help you and hinder you there are a few things in the way. On the positive side there are glowing bananas which give you multipliers or freeze the screen, while on the negative side there are bombs, which if hit take ten points off your score. It’s a bit of a frenzy in Arcade Mode but it’s really good fun as you try to get a huge score which you can then boast about to your friends thanks to the leaderboards. Another available mode is the Zen Mode; here players basically try to rack up a score without the hinderance of bombs, although other than the leaderboards for your score that’s about all there is too it really. Party Mode sees two players either play together on the same screen, or go up against each other, it’s great fun, although I have to admit that it can be a bit wild, i.e you can probably expect to get smacked a few times due to your close proximity to the other player.
The final mode in the game, and probably one of my favorites is the Challenge Mode. This isn’t really a mode in itself, rather a combination of all the other modes. What happens here is that you are tasked with reaching a certain score, e.g 50 in Zen Mode, and then once you achieve this the game will then set the next challenge, which could be something like achieve a score of 200 in Classic Mode. As you would expect, as you go through each challenge things get tougher and tougher, however it’s extremely addictive and really great fun. Also, you can also try to beat other players scores in this mode, although I was unable to test this fully as no-one on my friends list had the game at the time of reviewing.
What I really love about Fruit Ninja Kinect is the fantastic presentation. The fruit looks fantastic as it springs up and gets splattered over the background, while the sound effects of sliced fruit seems absolutely spot on. Another fantastic addition is how your shadow is placed in the background, not only giving you a fantastic idea of your position, but also allowing your to have a good laugh pulling off all sorts of over the top moves and watching as your shadow replicated them. In addition to the wonderful presentation, the leaderboards, which are available for every mode really add to the longevity of the game.
There is no doubt that Fruit Ninja Kinect is probably one of the best uses of Kinect yet. Sure it’s a simple enough game, but that’s what makes it so great. It’s so responsive to every movement and seems to pick you up every time, which is all you can ask from a game designed for Microsoft’s motion controller.
It’s hard to pinpoint what makes Fruit Ninja Kinect such a great game, maybe it’s a combination of the simple gameplay, responsive controls and fun sound effects. Or maybe it’s just that slicing fruit and watching it splatter into pieces is just crazy addictive. Like I say, I’ve no idea what makes this game so good, but it is, so if you have Kinect your one apple short in you’re fruit basket if you miss out on this.
Rating: Excellent Review policy