A game like Eyetoy: Kinetic exists today thanks to one game; Dance Dance Revolution. A funny, and probably unexpected, phenomenon occurred with DDR. People actually enjoyed playing a game that required a certain degree of physical activity. Stories began to surface chronicling the tales of an overweight individual who found DDR and began shedding the pounds thanks to the physical activity associated with the game. This opened up developers eyes to a whole new perspective on what gamers will embrace. Thanks to Sony and the cool little eye toy camera, the DDR concept has evolved into a full scale personal trainer. And guess what? It really works.
Okay' let's get something straight right out of the gate. You cannot play this game sitting on the couch. You will not be blasting aliens, saving the world or racing at high speeds. If you think this game can be played with your Dual Shock controller, you might as well pack it in and move along because there is nothing for you to see here. If you are ready to get up out of the Lazyboy and not be afraid to push yourself, you will be sweating in no time. See, Eyetoy: Kinetic is serious about working out but packages the exercise in fun games. You may actually forget you are getting a workout until you stop and notice the sweat dripping from your forehead.
One of the cool things about this game is the variety. There are four main 'fitness zones'? that are hit during the training. My personal favorite was the combat training which has you punching and kicking in all directions. Throw any self dignity out the window because you will be flailing around in front of your TV trying to get the moves down but stick with it and you will be rewarded. The cardio routines were enjoyable but I could have done without the mind and body stuff. Then again, I am not the most spiritual person.
If you are really serious about your training, you begin a 12 week fitness program with a virtual trainer helping you out. The trainer will mix in all four of the fitness zones. The training gets progressively more difficult and really can push you. Your trainer does a great job showing the correct form and using the eye toy to see how well you are replicating the moves works well. I do wish the trainer gave more feedback on your form because I often felt I was not doing the exercises properly but never got any feedback. Oh well, this is still pretty fresh technology so hopefully it will keep evolving.
Overall, I think this is a good game. You have to set your expectations going in and you will enjoy it as well. Think of this as a much more enjoyable version of a fitness DVD that allows you to easily select the routines you enjoy as well as follow a set path. In the end, I almost scored the game a 'Fans Only'? but decided just about every gamer I know could benefit from a bit more physical activity and this is a fun way to do it.