Microsoft Set to Release Sports Game to Silence Critics

By Kristine Mamanta,
Managing Editor

Microsoft’s Xbox One has been an easy target for many critics, especially for the group of people that criticize the video game console’s every move. Forbes de­scribes the console’s Kinect controller as a double edge sword, as it receives a wide spectrum of good and bad reviews. How­ever, one industry watcher believes that the latest Xbox One game to launch will ulti­mately silence critics.

Andy Robertson, Forbes contributor, was able to get a first look into “Kinect Sports Rival,” which he describes as Wii Sports on steroids. Xbox One has boasted of its latest and updated Kinect feature that brings motion tracking and voice recog­nition to its games. According to Robert­son, Kinect Sports Rival makes great use of the Kinect motion controller. The game brings together various sports and activi­ties. While Kinect brings back familiar sports such as soccer, bowling and tennis, it also expands its range by adding fresh and interesting activities like target shoot­ing, climbing and wake board racing.

Whether one is creating his or her own digital avatar, picking a specialized sports team, or playing the sport, Robertson senses finesse and quality when playing the game end-to-end. Kinect Sports Rival is now complete with high quality graphics and impres­sive gameplay.

Craig Duncan, studio head at Rare, the devel­oper behind the game, told Forbes, “When we started to work with the Xbox One hardware team it made natural sense to take [Ki­nect Sports Rivals] further – make it look better, player better and add more depth and mastery.”

According to Robert­son, mastery was incorpo­rated into each of the differ­ent sports. On screen advice was provided by the game to help ease the frustration of poor body motion plays. Duncan also adds that players need to set up the Kinect camera properly and adjust it to have optimum playing experience.

“There’s a number of things we do to make it easier for people to play,” said Danny Isaac, Executive Producer on Ki­nect Sports Rival. “With the sensor itself it’s a lot more accurate so we can really pick up the intent of the player.”

After testing the game for a fair amount of time, Robert­son found that Kinect Sports Rival surpasses its counter­parts. Compared to other pre­vious Kinect Sports titles, the game encompasses a better sense of competition and skill.

“[It’s] not that the game is harder per se, but that the increased accuracy of the Ki­nect sensor moves this from an exuberant frantic work out to something requiring a deft touch and strategic understand more common in the likes of FIFA,” Robertson said on Forbes.

Despite Robertson’s re­view, will Kinect Sports Ri­val really silence critics? The game releases Tuesday, April 8, so critics will have to wait then to see if the game comes up to par.

A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, Mar. 25 print edition.

Contact Kristine at


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