If you're craving a less kid-friendly experience on the Kinect at launch, then your options are limited to just one game--Ubisoft's Fighters Uncaged. Sadly, not only does it fail on nearly every level to offer a compelling fighting experience, but its broken motion controls also make it immensely frustrating. Lifeless animation, generic visuals, and a baffling scoring system all serve to sap the fun out of playing. And, in a crazy omission, there isn't even a two-player option. Uncaged isn't so much a game as it is a way to make you want to bang your head against a brick wall in despair.
6283894The stilted fights are an exercise in frustration.
The premise behind Fighters Uncaged is as short and generic as they come. You play as an up-and-coming street brawler named Simon, who must battle his way through other brawlers in underground leagues to save his father from a kingpin. Aside from a mention in the manual and a short cinematic intro, you hear nothing about the story once you start playing, which makes this setup completely unnecessary. The game offers up just one mode, called Fight. But, before you can get down to fighting, you must endure an excruciatingly dull tutorial that teaches you the basics in a drawn-out fashion.
You view your character from behind in an over-the-shoulder perspective, with your opponent directly opposite. To fight, you mimic the moves you want your character to perform. For example, punching out directly in front of you launches a jab, while arcing your swing launches a hook. An onscreen animation demonstrates the movement, after which you must perform it three times against an instructor before you can progress to the next move. The game handles lateral movement of your character, so all you have to worry about is performing one of the kicks, punches, and dodges on offer.
The tutorial stretches on for what seems like an eternity because you not only have to perform each move three times, but you also have to repeat the process for both limbs--it's like attending a fighting school for toddlers. Furthermore, once you've completed basic training, you then have to fight against the instructor three times in best two-out-of-three matches before you can actually jump into the leagues. There is a skip option, but using it means the game thinks you haven't completed the training, so you can't progress anyway.
Getting dropped to the floor is a regular occurrence as the game fails to recognize your motions.