Kinect Sports Party Pack DLC Impressions

Posted December 27th, 2010 at 6:30 pm

The arrival of the Kinect Sports “Party Pack” downloadable content was a pleasant surprise especially considering it was being provided for free. Kinect Sports already carried a number of mini-games for each sport but the DLC provided a new one for each. Though the DLC only adds a little in the way of depth and variety through the new mini-games they actually turn out to be worthwhile additions.

Target Smash (Table Tennis)
Moving targets from left to right cross the table, hitting the target once gains a point, twice gains two points, and so on. Since the targets move though it is not easy to hit particular ones multiple times. Getting 20 points adds seconds to the timer.

Pinvaders (Bowling)
Think Space Invaders only with rows of bowling pins. The goal is to knock them down and keep them from reaching the “hazard zone”. Bowling balls can be thrown with both hands. The concept is pretty cool for a mini-game of this sort but it isn’t as easy as it sounds.

Fruit Splatter (Beach Volleyball)
I like this one quite a bit. Fruit is served at the player and has to be hit for points, and multiple servers come in as time goes along so it gets more frantic. Making it more challenging are bombs that are tossed over and have to be avoided. Getting hit by a bomb ends the game.

Rapid Runner (Track and Field)
Racing against the clock around a track with zones for the player to rest where the CPU moves them along. The goal is to cover the most distance possible in the time frame. It worked pretty well and seems a good fit with the other Track and Field events though it goes away from the theme by not being a real life event and adding the rest zones.

Super Striker (Soccer)
Corner kicks are sent in and the player must attempt to score on them with headers and kicks. There are also boots thrown in that have to be avoided. This one was okay but not nothing I’d go out of my way to play.

King of the Ring (Boxing)
I had especially low expectations for this one since Boxing was the worst sport included in the game. KOTR, despite carrying with it the boxing flaws, is not too bad. It involves a 30 second clock and unending opponents to knockout. After each is knocked out the next one comes along and four seconds are added to the clock. I think its better because there is no need to be defensive which the game struggled with handling in the full boxing mode.

The mini-game additions may not be anything remarkable, and have limited longevity, but for free DLC they are quite fun to play. A few of them are even more entertaining than the full sports representations. It was a nice bonus to an already good total package that is Kinect Sports.