Straight to the point, if you’re looking for a must-buy game to justify the purchase of a Kinect, then look elsewhere. There’s nothing particularly “bad” about this game per se, but there’s also nothing remarkably good either. Adrenalin Misfits doesn’t have anything to really set it apart from the other board racing game from Kinect’s launch (yes, I know AM has snowboards as opposed to Sonic’s hoverboards – but they’re really the same thing)
The controls are simple enough – leaning from side to side in order to handle turns, jumping to jump – as I said, simple. The controls also work fairly well, which is something considering the issues the other launch titles showed. Unfortunately, saying that “the game works”, is about the best thing that can be said for it. It’s incredibly boring, and extremely mundane.
The game might say “It’s not a race, it’s a battle!”, but that’s not completely true. Yes, there are powerups you’ll find while going downhill, but they’re not that good or very creative. It’s pretty much ends up just being a race. There are trick competitions, but they’re also pretty “common”. To pull off a trick, you pretty much lift your knee and wiggle, or twist your body a bit. If it sounds counter-intuitive, that’s because it is – a game like this would have been much better suited as an XBLA title using a standard controller.
Like almost every other Kinect game I’ve played, AM takes pictures of you while you play it – usually during jumps – and it plays them back when the game is over. You get to see how stupid you managed to look, and everyone around has a good laugh – just like with other games.
The courses aren’t really bad – they have the normal branching paths, the normal giant air, the normal shortcuts; pretty much everything you could expect. However, there are issues where an obstacle is placed in a stupid fashion right on a downward turn, so that your momentum almost always makes you careen into it, causing you more and more frustration.
One of the best things about the game in the price, at only $40 it’s not only $20 less than a normal game, but $10 less than other Kinect games. Maybe Konami realized the game wasn’t worth all that much to start with. The menu is also pretty good, being second to Dance Central’s interface in my eyes. It’s very fast and responsive, and never feels overburdening.
The graphics are, well, extremely cartoon-y – almost tacky, but I can see how kids would get into that (hell my 8-year old seemed to love them). The characters all wear a random amalgam of fashions – from baggy jeans, to over-the-top jewellery. They look, sound, and act pretty ridiculous.
In closing, Adrenalin Misfits isn’t a horrid game. It’s not completely broken, nor is it unplayable. Unfortunately, it’s so mediocre that no one will bother with it unless they either have an absurd amount of money to blow on games, or they’re dead-set on playing every Kinect game there is.
Adrenalin Misfits was released on November 4th, 2010.