Review: Kung Fu Panda 2 (Kinect)
Let’s get one thing straight. This game…
…isn’t really designed for me. I’ve…
…never watched either of the films (all I can think of is Jack Black). I think the Kinect is a waste of money (nobody‘s living room is big enough). And I hate pandas (damn cuddly animals).
That being said, even with my heart of ice I did manage to have a good time playing this game even if it does have…
…a few flaws.
So the game takes place moments after the end of the second Kung Fu Panda movie. If you haven’t seen it, the good guys win. However even though the evil Lord Shen has been defeated, trouble is still brewing in Gongmen City. A pair of komodo dragons lead an evil army to loot the city. You take control of Po and your aim is to fight off the evil do-badders. Sounds like a fairly standard movie tie-in.
Well first things first, my living room isn’t exactly designed to do kung fu in. This is one of the biggest flaws with Kinect in general. I don’t know anybody who was the optimum set up to use the device. But fear not dear reader, I found a work around.
I took everything… outside!
A few extension leads and an angry girlfriend later and I finally was ready to play Kung Fu Panda 2 in the garden. That is once I got past the multiple, monotonous loading screens. It is absolutely unforgivable in this day and age to have so many loading screens. Every single cut scene! It completely destroys the flow of the game.
But the sun was out, I was in a good mood so maybe I could let this one slide if the gameplay was quite good.
Well, it’s ok I guess. You’re told when to attack things, and you do an attacking motion. Then you’re told when to defend, and you do a defending motion. It’s pretty simplistic. There are some cute mini-games thrown in as well but it still feels a bit shallow.
Maybe I’m missing the point. Maybe Kung Fu Panda is just aimed for people far younger than myself. The common problem with this target market though is that people often underestimate the intelligence of kids. They don’t need to be patronised, they can work things out for themselves. The overall tone of this game is to cater to the thick, which is actually pretty offensive, because I believe (having once been a child) that children are very quick at learning and working things out.
I mean, the Kinect works fine and it all feels like the movie so in some sense THQ have done a good job there, but if they think just because it is tied into a franchise that kids will forgive a game with frequent loading screens and treats them like they’re stupid, then sadly they’re mistaken.
I feel though, if I were a child I might be better positioned to comment on whether you should buy it or not. What I will say is if you’re an adult and you’re looking for a new Kinect game, give this one a miss. If you’re a parent and you’re kid really wants the new Kung Fu Panda 2 game, rent it.
You will need a Kinect device though, so please bear that in mind. Bear? Oh never mind.