Today I learned that I may never learn my lesson.
Kung Fu Panda 2 isn’t the first absolutely awful Kinect based movie-tie-in game I’ve played, it’s not even the first I’ve reviewed in Backlog Quest 2, but things were just a tiny bit different with this one. Unlike Ice Age: Continental Drift, where I had little to no expectations going in, I had thoroughly enjoyed the movie-tie-in game for one of Dreamwork’s other films Puss in Boots. Plus, lets be honest, a motion-controlled game based around a character that knows Kung Fu seems like an obvious fit.
It probably is too, but something really doesn’t fit with this one. While the game is better than Ice Age, it is far to repetitive, frustrating, boring and fragmented to enjoy in any meaningful way (trading it in for a descent price does not count). Lets break it down:
Repetitive: Much of the game involved fighting a series of enemies in a row. Each enemy was basically a small boxing match. Dodge some attacks (more on this in frustrating) and then punch and kick when you can. And repeat. Again and again. More on how this gets extra repetitive in frustrating.
Frustrating: The dodge controls in particular are very poor and it seemed I was hit by a vast majority of the strong attacks enemies threw. While not an issue in the first couple of fights, the later fights where you face larger amounts of stronger enemies means you die. And when you die you have to repeat all of the fights again. Often times there isn’t even a check point between one batch of fights and another batch that had a cut scene in between. The other games that show up in Kung Fu Panda are also prone to not working well (in fact the so-so fight game works the best). Often you find yourself going “Ahhh! I totally moved that way!” while playing.
Boring: Obviously repetition leads to boredom, and that is true here to. When not being frustrated by the bad controls you’ll probably find yourself grudgingly going along with whatever repetitive task the game is asking you to perform. Repetition isn’t the only problem though, I mean Tetris is repetitive, but what you are doing repeated isn’t even that much fun.
Fragmented: There is a story to Kung Fu Panda 2 but it is all over the place. Seriously. Now, perhaps not having seen the movie is part of the issue, but considering that the story takes place after the film should negate this. It just seems like you are in one area then suddenly are in the next, often doing the same thing, and there really isn’t ever any explanation of why things changed.
The real sign Kung Fu Panda 2 is just not wroth playing though is that when I grew to frustrated to continue playing for a while I did what I sometimes do. Took a break from the game. Upon returning the game was actually worse, and I just couldn’t bring myself to finish it.
Tomorrow I take my 3DS for a drive in Asphalt 3D.
Final Rating: 3/10
CBR Break Down:
Console Played On: Xbox 360
Time to completion: Probably about 5 hours
Gamer Score Earned: N/A
Price Bought at: $8.99
Current Price: $15.99 (Amazon)
Recommend Purchase Price: $5, maybe
Why you should buy it: It’ll probably shut the kid up for a bit.
Why you shouldn’t buy it: You have the option to buy Puss in Boots instead.