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Nic and I got some hands-on time (or should that be hands-off since you don't actually touch a controller?) with Kinect. They people running the demos paired us off into groups of 4 and each group of 4 were led into circular rooms with Kinect running. Each room's walls were transparent, so the people outside could watch the demos as they happened.

The four games being shown were Kinect Sports, Kinectimals, Kinect Adventures, and Joy Ride. We played Sports and Adventures. In Sports, we first played a hurdles race (in versus mode, so we were both playing at the same time) in which you had to run in place to make yourself run in the game. The higher and faster you raised your knees, the faster your avatar ran. As you approached a hurdle, it would give you a visual clue as to when to jump, and of course, to make your avatar jump, you had to jump. If you jumped too soon or too late, you would hit the hurdle and be slowed down for a moment. Once I got my timing down, I was able to clear the hurdles fine. Nic wasn't so lucky, so I won the race. :)

Next we played Bowling. After picking up your virtual bowling ball with either your right or left hand, you can step from side to side to aim. As you do, one of the arrows on the bowling alley (which are seen on real bowling alleys) will light up to tell you where you're aiming. When you have your aim ready, you simply do the same motion you would if you were really bowling - bring your arm back and then forward while stepping forward. The harder/faster you do it, the harder your bowling ball is thrown down the alley. You can also twist your wrist/arm while as you're "releasing" the ball to put a spin on it, making it curve as it approaches the pins.

Next up was Kinect Adventures. The other two people played a 2-player co-op game where both players are in a large raft. As your raft travels through the water, you steer it left or right as well as make the raft jump, but only if you work together. In other words, to steer the raft right you both have to lean to the right, and to make the raft jump, you both have to jump at about the same time. While traveling down the in-game river, there are gates which you want to steer the raft to go between (similar to the classic arcade game Toobin'). There are also plenty of ramps, in which you and your partner have to jump at the same time to give the raft enough lift to reach the landing ramp.

Nic and I played an obstacle course in versus mode. Similar to the hurdles, it's a race to see who finished first. You basically are travelling through the course on a rail. The various obstables are either high, low, or on left or right side, so to avoid the obstacles you either jump, duck, step to the left or step to the right. Hitting an obstacle slows you down, so the person who avoids the most obstacles wins.

Overall the Kinect was quite responsive and accurate. Each of the 4 games that were available for demo will be released in November as stand-alone products.

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