Namco Bandai America Inc.’s Dragon Ball Z Kinect for Microsoft Corp.’s Xbox 360 is a solid motion-sensitive title that allows users to act out key battle moments in an active yet stationary fighting game.
Dragon Ball Kinect includes a Story Mode to battle in key moments in the Dragon Ball storyline, Score Attack to fight in select levels for a high score challenge, and Card Reader to import QR codes to unlock characters and power-ups.
The first-person fighter allows users enough freedom to pummel their opponent in Dragon Ball style. Basic jabs and kicks will initiate a furious combo which will lead to multiple jab-fests before a final blow. In addition, users can perform moves like the Kamehameha, Spirit Bomb, Final Flash, and Special Beam Cannon.
A handy icon guide on the right side of the display dynamically indicates which moves are registering with the Kinect.
The Kinect does a fine job of recognizing each move and there wasn’t any trouble in landing jabs or tossing fireballs from a distance. Each fight is structured in a particular way to allow users to deploy a range of moves, but in the specific range that the fight allows. For example, after a close-range melee, the enemy will move to the distance to force long-range attacks. While there is plenty of attack prowess, users don’t have free range of character movement.
The graphics engine is good at 30 frames-per-second. Dragon Ball characters are cell-shaded and animated like a standard cartoon episode, with over-the-top, cinematic blasts against character battle cries.
Dragon Ball Z Kinect is a solid motion-based fighter. The title successfully adapts a first-person battle experience with intense fights, though punching in place can exhaust the fun out of a long battle.