Sonic Free Riders is a launch title for the Kinect and the seventh racing game in the Sonic the Hedgehog series of games.
Eggman, disguised as a king, announces the World Grand Prix. Though he offers prizes to the winners, his real plan is to collect the data from the racers in order to program them into robots. After defeating Eggman, the real enemy is revealed to be Metal Sonic and challenges Sonic to one final race, and Sonic wins. Even though are no prizes, everyone is happy because they had fun.
The game brings full body motion controlled fast-paced boarding action, developed to take full advantage of Kinect for the Xbox 360. Kinect's unique motion sensor means Sonic Free Riders will see family and friends controlling their fully customizable hover board or bike by twisting, turning, and jumping in an exhilarating race to be first to cross the finish line.
Choosing from one of the Sonic characters for an avatar, one can reach out and grab a variety of pickups along the course. By throwing, shaking, or swinging one's arms to launch one's items, you can gain the competitive edge over your rivals in high octane single or multiplayer races. Players can use Kinect to hurl items such as bowling balls, rockets and other traps toward opponents in the race to the finish.
Why It Sucks
- It requires the Kinect. You can't use a regular controller.
- The nearly unresponsive controls make the game borderline unplayable at times.
- Besides the unresponsive controls, the movements the player has to do are tiring and even painful. In particular, having to lean back and forward can hurt your back.
- Menu navigation is frustrating.
- Voice commands barely work and require to say the exact name of the option you want. How are you supposed to know what that option's name is?
- Repetitive music.
- The multiplayer mode can be very awkward for certain players.
- It marks the debut of a new voice cast.
- The graphics look really good.
- Bike gears are more fuctional and enjoyable.
The game's overall reception is mixed. IGN gave the game a 7.5/10, praising the gameplay, music and options. They had said that that it is a must buy game of the Kinect because there are lots of features in both multi-play and single-play. They had criticized the menu screen saying that it does not have a good presentation but the voice support helps a lot. They had also said that the cutscenes aren't so cool because they are just "talking by heads". Official Xbox Magazine also gave it 7.5, praising the wealth of content and multiplayer options whilst criticizing occasional unresponsiveness in the controls. GameTrailers gave the game a score of 4.5, panning cumbersome controls that tax the body. Brian Crecente of Kotaku reviewed it negatively, calling it "the most broken of the Kinect titles I've played." Kotaku's Crecente later reported that the responsiveness of the controls seemed to differ between persons, with fellow reviewer Stephen Totilo saying the controls worked fine for him. Joystiq gave the game 1/5 stars, calling it "the equivalent of patting your head while rubbing your stomach while riding a unicycle." GamesRadar gave it 4/10 and X-play giving it 2/5 stars. As of 27 June 2015, it has sold 1.05 million copies.