See if this story doesn’t sound familiar. You excitedly unpacked your brand new Kinect and after hooking it up place it on top of your TV. You popped in a game, but quickly realized that most of the game require at least 8-10 feet of space. But in your cramped apartment (or living room or space), you only have 5 feet of space or less!
I live in the New York City area, and this is one of the most common dilemma amongst my friends who live in small apartments and have the Xbox and Kinect. There have been many creative workarounds. One friend of mine purchased a Wall Mount so he could sneak in an extra foot of space behind the TV–problem is, it didn’t exactly look very pretty amongst the rest of the artwork on his wall. Another friend completely re-arranged her furniture around the Xbox, again sacrificing aesthetics for the Kinect.
As for me, I was stubborn. I insisted on keeping my TV where it was and my sofa where it was, meaning that I had exactly 6 feet 9 inches to work with. That was enough to allow me to play most games, although most of them also gave me a “your gameplay may not be optimal” message. And for some games, I literally had to move the sofa out of the way each time (I know this blog is about Kinect fitness, but that’s not exactly the way I wanted to get exercise!)
This is why I am exceedingly excited that Nyko is releasing a product called Zoom for Kinect on August 16. (You can pre-order it from Amazon by clicking on the link). This is a rather ingenious little device, and at less than $30 it’s probably going to be one of the best purchases people who live in cramped spaces will make for their Xbox.
The Zoom is basically a lens that you clip on to your Kinect. Honestly, the lens reminds me a little of WALL-E–it makes your Kinect even more darned cute than it already is. But most importantly, the lens acts as “corrective lenses” of sorts for your Kinect. The Kinect will be able to see a wider field of vision, meaning that you’ll be able to play games in your tiny apartment or living room without drilling holes or rearranging furniture, and you’ll even be able to play with two people without bumping all over each other.
When it’s released, I’ll try to give you a review of the product to let you know how it works. But kudos to Nyko for recognizing a need and coming up with a solution, which gives hope to all of us apartment-dwellers!