Rancor Rampage felt like an odd addition to the game, but wound up the sole bright spot in my Kinect Star Wars experience. It put me in the role of a monstrous rancor stomping and tearing its way through civilization. I got a kick out of chucking civilians like baseballs and jumping around to crush buildings. Even the clunky controls didn’t feel as frustrating here as they did in other parts of the game. This was simply good, chaotic fun but began to feel more like the Incredible Hulk than anything out of Star Wars.
Finally, I played through the single-most puzzling use of the Star Wars license I've ever seen -- the Galactic Dance-Off mode. It takes various Star Wars characters and uses them as the performers for a dance game like others on Kinect. The dancing mechanics work well enough that anyone could become a Sith Lord of the Dance, but I feel strange using moves like the Force Push and the Chewie Hug as dance moves.
Worse yet, rather than dance to songs from the films (which would be a ridiculous notion in itself), the characters dance to Top 40 pop hits that have been re-worded to fit the Star Wars license. The very first song I heard was Gwen Stefani's "Hollaback Girl," but with the lyrics switched to work with "hologram girl," while the chorus repeated, "It's my ship! It's my ship!" If you enjoy cheesy pun-filled lyrics, this game mode is chock full of them. My Star Wars fandom has survived Jar Jar Binks, the Asian stereotype Nute Gunray, and the Star Wars Christmas Special. Yet, I found nearly every single song in this catalog utterly groan-inducing. I'd rather kiss a Wookiee than play songs like "Princess Leia in a Bottle" and "I'm Han Solo" (a reworded Jason Derulo song, of all things!). What has happened to the film franchise that I loved so much as a child?!
Kinect Star Wars should have been a crown jewel for the Kinect. Instead, it feels like a disorganized mess, filled with control quirks, wooden character models, and awkward animation. I could have looked past these shortcomings. I could have even looked past the pandering Galactic Dance-Off mode. I would have overlooked it all had LucasArts, Terminal Reality, and the long list of other developers who worked on it done lightsaber fighting and Force moves justice. All I wanted was an immersive experience that would make me yell out, "I am a Jedi! I am a Jedi!" like 30 Rock's Tracy Morgan. But it was not meant to be. Only a Sith Lord deals in absolutes, but I feel comfortable saying that Kinect Star Wars is an absolute disappointment.
Galactic Dance-Off to Top 40 hits? What has happened to you, Star Wars?