Ease of Play: 10
Event Friendliness: 10
Overall Fun Factor: 9
The folks at Microsoft have managed to capture all the addictiveness and fun of one of the top iPhone games of all time and pair it perfectly with the Kinect. Fruit Ninja is not going to win any awards for its depth of storyline or its varied gameplay; however, as far as games that are easy to pick up and fun for people of all ages go, this one is near the top of the list.
The premise of the game is remarkably simple: chop the fruit flying across the screen while avoiding the occasional bomb. In order to make up for the loss of control resulting from moving away from a touchscreen, the developers inserted a glowing shadow outline of the player so that you can better predict where you will be chopping. There’s something really satisfying about being able to bust out your best ninja moves rather than running your finger across a screen as well.
There are several different game modes to choose from with varying levels of franticness in the game play from the peaceful and bombless “Zen Mode” to the fast-paced “Arcade Mode.” There are both cooperative and head-to-head multiplayer modes too, but, overly enthusiastic players should be careful or else someone’s real melon could get smashed.
Overall this game may have limited playability for someone purchasing it for himself, however it has all the ingredients for an outstanding party game.
Event Theme Integration:
There are a few obvious themes here that would work great with Fruit Ninja: Ninja, Martial Arts, Eastern etc. This is also a great opportunity to introduce different ninja props to the game. You could also hone in on the fruit angle and use that to tie it into a tropical theme. Perhaps have the game set up next to a bar that is serving an array of tropical drinks that all feature slices of fruit found in the game.