Evil Scientists, madmen, Gannon, vengeful gods, walking mountains, giant spiders, Gannon again, zombie Nazi’s and even Death Himself.  My list of fallen enemies during my gaming career has gathered some impressive and equally intriguing names but now I face my biggest challenge yet, fruit!

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the humble mobile game Fruit Ninja, developed by Halfbrick Studios, has made its way onto the Kinect for Xbox 360 as part of their Summer of Arcade season.  With added features and full Kinect integration, it’s hard not to instantly fall in love with this juicy title!

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Firstly, Fruit Ninja Kinect is not going to offer you the deep and meaningful experience like titles such as From Dust or Bastion have so far in the Summer of Arcade but that’s not what Fruit Ninja Kinect was built for. It was built to be a bright and fun title with lots of appeal which is exactly where it excels.  Undeniably Halfbrick in design, Fruit Ninja Kinect is bold, bright, colorful, silly, fun and wonderfully engineered.

The controls in Fruit Ninja Kinect are as you would expect, you stand in front of your Kinect and use your hands to chop the offending fruit on screen.  The controls are a lot more responsive than other Kinect titles I could mention, and every time I have found myself hitting a bomb or missing a fruit in the game, I have known that it was my own fault, not my Kinect’s.

Packed with new game modes such as Classic Mode, where you have three lives to score as many points as you can, if you miss a fruit, you lose a life and if you hit on of the frequently appearing bombs, you lose altogether.  Arcade Mode is probably where you will spend most of your time as here you have 60 seconds but no life limit, the bombs which appear simply deduct 10 points from your score but to spice things up a bit you have the added element of Bonus Bananas which give you the ability to either slow down time, double your points or bombard you with fruit for a limited time.

Halfbrick hasn’t neglected the multiplayer aspect of Fruit Ninja though, with two separate multiplayer modes.  Battle mode has you fighting head-to-head against someone in local battles for the most points and Team Arcade which employs the same rules as Arcade Mode but with a partner. Though as with any Kinect game, with Fruit Ninja Kinect‘s sudden hand movements, be mindful of your co-op partners face! Slapping someone in the face and yelling “Ninja’d” will not earn you any bonus points!

Probably my favorite mode of the entire game has to be Zen Mode, with a 90 second time limit and no power-ups or bombs to distract you, you really can just have fun decimating bucket loads of fruit.

Fruit Ninja and its Kinect counterpart will always remain a casual mini-game, there is no escaping that, but what Halfbrick has done is they have brought a widely successful mobile game to a home console and not only made it better in my opinion, but maintained its soul. Fruit Ninja was never a mobile game which you would spend hours playing like a console game, it was that fun little game that would brighten up your commute to work or that especially boring team meeting at the office.  Fruit Ninja Kinect does exactly the same thing; when you have been worn down from the UFCs and the Your Shapes, Fruit Ninja is that wonderfully colorful little escape you have that lets you mess around and have fun.

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Title : Fruit Ninja Kinect
Format : XBLA
Developer : Halfbrick Studios
Publisher : Halfbrick Studios
Release Date : 08/10/11

[starreviewmulti id=1 tpl=20]

*Halfbrick provided SlimGamer.com with a promo code for a review copy.

If you you have fast fingers, here’s an XBLA redeem code for the full version of the game:
PKV4M-BG9DY-3BTM7-HM4MX-X3H6Q – Good Luck!