It’s finally here; Michael Jackson: The Experience has been released for the Xbox 360’s Kinect, and it does not disappoint. Grab your fedora and your sequined glove, and get ready as we bring you a first glance at this title.
I have to admit, the titles for the Kinect have left me a little disappointed lately and I had my reservations about this game as well; they all went away with the first time I played. Upon starting the game up, you’re taken through a montage of MJ’s hits and dance moves. After you sign in to your Kinect, you’re whole body is scanned in. The Wii version doesn’t have this capability, it just tracks the controller and it’s basically the equivalent of using your hand instead of an oar to row a boat. That being said, the 360 version already stands head and shoulders above the Wii version, and we haven’t even gotten into gameplay.
I’m going to warn you up front, outside of the easiest difficulty level, this game can get insanely hard! You can play this game anywhere from just busting out a few generic MJ-esque moves, all the way to basically doing full on MJ choreography. If you don’t have any dance experience, I suggest you start on easy. Oh, I don’t mean game dancing experience either; all of the Dance Masters you’ve played cannot save you here, haha. You will actually need some experience to take on the more difficult settings. Don’t worry, though, there is a guide in the bottom right corner that gives you a heads up for everything. That way you know what move is next. You can follow your back-up dancers as well as they already know what moves are coming, and they pull them off flawlessly.
You can sing too! The Kinect sensor’s built in microphone will track your voice and you will be judged on pitch accuracy and rhythm accuracy. It’s not as easy as it sounds.
In fact, the only flaw I can find with this game is the delay. I’m not sure if it’s an issue with the game itself, or my HT receiver needs a little fine tuning. I always find myself just a little behind on the dance moves, and with the lyrics. It’s just barely noticeable, but you can see it.
Michael Jackson: The Experience is also a multi-player game! There’s a battle mode, and it’s a lot of fun; you basically each take on an entire track and the best score wins. Then there’s party mode; this one is really fun. It’s a hop in, hop out experience. Players will take turns during each section of the song and there’s a different color indicator for each player, so there’s no confusion whose turn is next.
The catalog of songs is amazing! There are a ton of tracks to select from right off the bat. Ubisoft has said that there will be DLC (downloadable content) for this game. I’m not sure what they have in mind, but I can’t wait to see it. I mean, you already have pretty much all of his biggest hits in one package. What more can they add??
In the end, I recommend this game to anyone. If you’re a fan of MJ or dancing games, you’re going to love this game! It has everything. I think that the multi-player feature of this game offers something that everyone can enjoy as well. Overall, I would give this game an 8.5 out of 10.