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‘Boom Ball for Kinect’: Review

Posted on December 4, 2014 by Alan Walsh

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Boom Ball for Kinect: Review
One of my favourite features of the Xbox One is the unique Kinect Sensor. Kinect opens up motion and voice control not only to gamers but to developers too. We haven’t seen many Kinect games on Xbox One so far, but we’ve just got a new ID@Xbox Kinect game called ‘Boom Ball for Kinect’, developed by Virtual Air Guitar. It’s target audience is kind of everyone! Although it’s aimed for kids, it definitely fun for older folk too! The game only costs £7.99/$9.99 and is already available in the US and will be available in most other markets on December 5th 2014. So, does the game deliver value for money? Let’s find out!
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The game has a simple, easy to use interface. If you’ve Kinect Sign In enabled, you’ll be automatically ready to pick a level and start playing. There’s a total of 55 levels in the game, some easy, some more challenging. There’s also various different areas in which you must unlock a certain amount of stars in each area to progress to the next. The amount of stars you get in a level is based on how quickly you finish it and finishing it without losing a ball. Some levels are also based on getting a high score. You also have the ability to replay levels as much as you want to improve your time to unlock more stars in a particular level.
Gameplay is easy to get into. You can use either your left or right hand and is best played while standing up. You are given a certain number of balls (usually 5) to complete the level with and you lose a ball if you don’t hit when it reflects back to you. You start by grabbing a ball, this is done by reach up with whichever hand you want to shoot/push it with. You then fire the ball forward by pushing your hand forward (whichever one you initially selected the ball with). It will then hit and destroy the bricks and reflect back to you in which case you hit it again (you only need to have you hand where the ball is going to you) and keep going. Your aim is to destroy them all as quickly as you can without losing too many balls. You may also unlock the “boom ball” which destroys bricks immediately upon impact. Sometimes you may have multiple balls to hit a time too, helping you finish a level faster.

Boom Ball for Kinect launch trailer above.
Tracking is fantastic. The game was optimized really well for the Kinect as I have very few to no tracking issues. And this is in my tiny room, where I’m about one meter from my Kinect which can’t see my feet. Brilliant! Sometimes you need to be careful when hitting the ball back, I find when you try to push you hand, it can often miss and just holding your hand steady to where the ball is coming can work better.

I feel the game is best played in short bursts. I haven’t found myself being able to play this in a long one hour run, but this is something you could play for 15 to 20 minutes today and again tomorrow and so forth. It would also be a great party game to take turns with family and friends (might be a good idea for Christmas in the living room). At times it can feel repetitive but the game tries to keep itself fresh with different balls, environments and bricks to hit. There isn’t any story or local multiplayer or online modes so it’s just limited to the Boom Ball game. But when you look at what you’re getting for the price, I think it’s well worth it. If you have kids, I think this is a great game for them. If you’re an Achievement hunter (the game ships with 1000G) or you simply love Kinect games, I think this is a great title for you! I’m happy to give ‘Boom Ball for Kinect’ a well -deserved 8.5/10.
– Easy interface, short time to get into a level.
– Optimized really well with Kinect, works great in small and big rooms.
– 55 levels and challenges within levels to accomplish.
– Fantastic price, £7.99/$9.99.
– Great fun with family and friends.
– Might feel repetitive when playing solo.
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