Fruit Ninja Kinect 2 maintains the original’s gameplay to a fault and doesn’t expand enough on this formula. Select few new modes don’t alter the game enough to raise much interest. The game remains a fun time but feels more like a direct port of the first game on the Xbox 360. My enjoyment did not last very long and a memory erasing error I ran into made me leave on a bad note.
Fruit will fly all over the screen and you must wave your arms to slice them, creating combos and increasing your score, while avoiding the bombs. Power-up bananas will cause the fruit to slow down, grow in size, or increase their frequency in order to create more hectic and rewarding moments to play through. It also features multiplayer that, when the kinect works properly, can be a good time. It’s a great deal of fun that is incredibly easy to pick up (or walk to in this case) and begin playing.
This concept is familiar since it is identical to the last game. Fruit Ninja Kinect 2’s biggest flaw is that it doesn’t add or change enough. This game feels like more of a port of the Xbox 360 version in how similar it is. There are a few new modes that will force you to dodge elements while slashing fruit but they alter the core formula so little that it doesn’t alleviate enough of the repetition. The gameplay is still as fun s before but a lack of new, exciting ideas doesn’t help sell this sequel.
Most exciting is how the game motivates you through in and out-of-game achievements to strive for. In-game there will be three optional objectives to work towards each time you enter a game session. These can range from slicing a cumulative number of kiwis to not allowing any watermelons to pass by you for fifteen seconds straight. The Xbox One achievements are where some of the creativity really shines. These will often task you with playing the game in quite unconventional ways that really add an element of quirk to the game. Such as slicing every bomb you encounter, or requiring you to miss every fruit that comes on screen. These additional objectives really twist how the standard goals work and gives the gameplay longer legs.
Any time you play or complete a new objective you will earn experience towards your overall level. Increasing your rank will unlock new blades for you to use and silhouettes to inhabit on screen. Constantly adding to this score through any of the game modes (solo or in multiplayer) is great since you never feel like you could be better spending your time elsewhere in the game. The sense of progression is strong as you are always working on increasing your level.
While playing the game I encountered a couple major issues. The first was that the kinect had a really hard time picking up a second player at any given moment. Fruit Ninja Kinect 2 makes note that you can have a friend walk up during any game and wave to join - mid session. I rarely had this feature work. The kinect picked up multiple people when specifically setting up a multiplayer session but had major issues trying to add someone in to, what was originally, a single player game. The other issue is that the game erased all my progress randomly. For some strange reason I started up the game and found my rank was back at the start. Nothing was unlocked and the cleared objectives had reset. This caused me to stop playing the game since I did not feel like repeating the hours of goals I had already achieved. It is a real shame that the game left me on such a bad note.
Fruit Ninja Kinect 2’s biggest problem is that it is too much of the same. The scarcely new modes are uninteresting and the core gameplay remains unchanged. If you didn’t play the original then you are bound to have a great time since it is still a fun formula. Hopefully the game does not reset all your data at random intervals like it did for myself. Be prepared for what is essentially a port of the first Fruit Ninja Kinect.