Power Rangers come to Kinect finally after a long wait, but in case you haven’t been following along, here’s a summary:
Wield all the power of the Super Samurai universe in this motion-control Power Rangers battle for Xbox Kinect! Experience what it’s like to be a Power Ranger as you Morph into the Red, Green, Blue, Gold, Yellow, or Pink Ranger and take on the Moogers and Nighlok. Learn how to control Fire, Water, Earth, Sky, and Light using the ancient Kanji symbols. Use awesome Power Ranger weapons like the Spin Sword. Unleash unstoppable attacks with Super Samurai power-ups including Mega Mode, Super Samurai Mode, and Super Mega Mode. You can pilot a Megazord in gigantic showdowns with Mega Monsters, team up with a friend in a co-op battle against the Nighlok, and more.
Overall, it’s ok. Kids that are fans of the show will probably like it although it lacks a lot of content compared to other games in my opinion. The good sense is that its very authentic, but can become very repetitive. There’s basically only two modes to the game which I’ll go into detail below.
The menu can be controlled via voice or the normal hover and lock Kinect method. It works great either way so there shouldn’t be any issues. The menu is split into 3 main categories which are Ranger, Training and Collection. The credits can be viewed from the icon off in the top right.
This is main mode of the game. In here, you can choose to start a New Game, Continue where you left off, or Battle Select which lets you replay the stages after you complete them. New Game is basically the story mode. You pick a ranger, either Pink, Green, Red, Blue or Yellow. As far as I could tell, the Gold Ranger isn’t in this one. Each ranger all has their own unique weapons and special abilities so kids will be able to choose their favorite. Once you pick a ranger, you are put into the game literally using the Kinect camera and a little introduction to the bad guy evolves. You then get to transform into a Power Ranger. You do this by making some fruit ninja gestures and make your symbol sign. Once you transform, then the battle ensues.
To move, you have to attack. You can either use your weapon, use your other hand to slice, and both legs to kick. Defensive moves include dodging to the left or right, jumping and ducking. Over long distances, your ranger will run by themselves but it just looks odd. As you battle the evil doers, some will have your power discs allowing you to transform your weapons. All of their transformed weapons are available and each ranger has their own unique gestures to activate their special weapons. After you get through all of the Nighloks, you then get to battle the main boss of the stage. It’s pretty similar except some of them allow you to use your weapon in blaster mode. After you beat the boss, he then grows into his giant form, displayed with a full motion video which is a nice touch. You then have to transform into your Megazord with the other rangers. You do this by doing another fruit ninja gesture and another full motion video shows the Megazord transformation and I do believe there are 5 or so different types of Megazords which are in the game. Here is a video of the regular Ranger battle:
In Megazord mode, it’s basically the same as regular battle mode except you are much slower. Sometimes the boss will charge at you and you then have to flail some punches to push him back. You then go into a combo move and the rangers show you which gestures to use. After you defeat the giant boss, the stage is complete. I did want to note, for whatever reason, in between the FMVs and the battles themselves, there’s a good couple of minutes of loading so it does get annoying. I also created a video of the Megazord battle that you can view below:
The game is really short. There are only 8 stages and it took me roughly an hour to go through it. The only differences between the story mode and the battle mode is the FMVs aren’t included and you just jump right into the action. You can also change your difficulty level after you complete it once. There’s 3 difficulty levels which are Kids, Normal and Hard. I noticed in Normal mode, you have to do your finishing moves as your special gestures. I did take notes of each stage and its boss. The list of stages are:
- Stage 1 – Splitface
- Stage 2 – Rofer
- Stage 3 – Steeleto
- Stage 4 – Deker
- Stage 5 – Gigertox
- Stage 6 – Dayu
- Stage 7 – Serrator
- Stage 8 – Master Xandred
This is the most strangest thing I have ever seen so far in a game. I thought it would be some mini-games or something defeating the Nighloks, but it’s like a dance/simon says mini-game area. It’s broken up into 3 areas, Breaking Challenge, Ranger Training and Nighlok Training.
Breaking Challenge has you following the rangers in a simon says type of game, but in beat with music to create blocks. Then you smash the blocks at the end of the little dance. For example, one of the rangers will say, “Punch, punch, duck, jump, chop” – so you do the same gestures and then chop your blocks. There are 5 levels in this mode, each having you break a specific number of blocks. Basically, you have to be super fast in order to create the most number of blocks. Otherwise, you will create 1 or 2 blocks. Your video image is projected in the game so it makes it more weird since there’s a delay.
Ranger Training is the same thing without the blocks. You just dance along to Kick Kick, Jump Jump things. Because it’s so fast, it does get tiring. There are 4 different levels in this one.
Nighlok Training is the same as Ranger training except you dance with the Nighlok’s. There are only 2 levels in here. I found that doing really well will get you “Extreme” which makes some giant thing appear in the background.
Collection just keeps tracks of your photos and your badges. You get to pose with the Rangers as you make progress in the game. You can view your photos with them in here. There are 8 albums in total to collect. I did forget to mention, that when you first start, you do get to create a Samurai ID which requires you to take a photo ID. On your Samurai ID, there is a spot for badges. Badges are collected by gaining Action points and Skill points throughout everything. There are total of 6 badge cases with 8 elemental badges in each case.
Overall, the authenticity is perfect. The theme song and everything else is very authentic. The problem with it is the lack of content. Most kids watching Power Rangers will probably beat it a couple of times and then become bored with it because there’s nothing else to do. The controls at least work pretty well for the most part, but the only real problem I could see with it is the lack of content. The graphics are par, although they could tidy them up a little bit. I suppose if your kiddo is a Power Ranger Super Fan, then you’ll probably want to pick this one up, otherwise you can probably wait until it’s in the bargain bin.
This review is based on a retail copy of the Xbox 360 version of Power Rangers Super Samurai
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