E3 2011: Use the Force with KINECT STAR WARS

E3 2011: Use the Force: KINECT STAR WARS

Earlier today, we took you on your first trip to a galaxy far, far away with Star Wars: The Old Republic. Now we take a break from the complex and go to a simpler version of these worlds, one where you are the Jedi, and your body is the controller.

Teased during Microsoft's massive presentation last year at E3 2010, this time LucasArts and Microsoft brought Kinect Star Wars to E3 2011 with a playable demo.


The premise is simple. You control a young Jedi Knight and get thrown into battles from throughout the times and places of all six films. While there will be other gameplay like pod-racing and space battles in the final game, we only got to have hands-on time in a ground-based lightsaber fight.


Playing two-player, we stood side-by-side, each controlling our own Jedi at the height of the Clone Wars. With droids as our enemies, it was easy to cut loose. The coveted one to one lightsaber controls are almost there. Close enough that we may actually see that in the final game. I have to say, however, that the lack of something physical in your hand was actually kind of a detriment here. I felt like I would've had more fun playing this game with a toy lightsaber in my hand at least, or Sony's Move controller with the saber lit up on screen ala Alternate Reality Games. I digress, the controls were pretty simple, turning your hand to turn your lightsaber and slashing, stabbing and deflecting with it.


Force powers were both easier to use and more fun, though. pushing one hand forward quickly sent out a wave of power to blast enemies back. Lifting it up slowly let you grab onto your foes with the force and send them flying. Leaning forward, your Jedi dashed into action, making it easy to close big distances quickly and dispatch foes with your weapon once more.

Overall, Kinect Star Wars has some work to be done before its release in Holiday 2011. But with the basics in place, a little clean-up will go a long way to allowing players to truly live out their Jedi fantasies. Just don't try to use the force on random people and objects right after playing. When you're not in front of the screen, it makes people look at you funny.

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