Getting his baller beat on

NBA Baller Beats is the latest take on rhythm games from Majesco games.  NBA Baller Beats is an Xbox 360 Kinect exclusive and the game tracks not only your movements, but also a basketball, making this game the first basketball game that is played with an actual basketball.  NBA Baller Beats also comes with an official NBA sized Spaulding basketball at no additional charge.

So what is this game all about?  Well with NBA Baller Beats players have 30 songs to choose from and they must dribble and perform moves to the beat of the song they choose.  Some of the moves include crossovers, through the legs, pump fakes, and behind the back which are all combined with left and right hand dribbling.  The game has songs that range from really easy and basic to really fast upbeat tracks that will test even the most talented of ball handlers.  The Professor (street ball legend) had some trouble with the game on the higher difficulties to give you some context to how difficult this game can be.

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NBA Baller Beats also sports Facebook integration.  Over the course of a song play through the Kinect will snap various images of you and at the end you can choose which ones you want to upload to Facebook or none at all (think Kinect Adventures).

The NBA Baller Beats Stage at E3 2012

I had an opportunity to play NBA Baller Beats and while my first run through was a bit rocky, I did enjoy it.  The Kinect tracking was solid and I think the game is a fresh take on the rhythm game genre.  We have seen this genre beaten into the ground so it’s nice to see something different like NBA Baller Beats.  I do have a few concerns about this title however.  Most Kinect games require a great deal of space to begin with and this game will require that plus a proper dribbling surface.  So people that don’t meet these spatial and interior decorating requirements will not be able to play Baller Beats.  While the idea of using a real basketball is a cool concept, I think it might scare those who don’t fancy themselves athletic.

This is where I took the game for a spin

I spoke with Tony Chien, the Senior Product Manager for NBA Baller Beats about the game and he answered a few questions I had about the title.  With it being a Kinect game involving a basketball I initially wondered whether or not this game would work on multiple surfaces.  Tony said that it will work on both hardwood floors and light carpets, but anything too shag or plush will likely inhibit the game from performing properly.  I also asked Tony about other social media integration (i.e. Twitter) and he said that they have nothing confirmed beyond Facebook, but they are “exploring” other social media options for NBA Baller Beats.

So if you have a Kinect, like basketball and are looking for something new in the rhythm game genre than NBA Baller Beats just might be that game for you.  NBA Baller Beats is scheduled for a September 2012 release.  Stay tuned for more E3 2012 coverage right here at HeyUGuys Gaming.