Sonic Free Riders is all about the pelvic thrusts.

Sega's hover board racing game has you controlling Sonic the Hedgehog, or one of his many friends or enemies, with the Xbox 360 Kinect controller, which means, you use your body to play.


To play, you stand with your body almost sideways, as if standing atop a skateboard facing the television, and then you swipe your foot over the ground to start and speed up. To steer you lean forward, bending at the knees, or lean back. Kinect can also sense when you reach your arms out, allowing you to grab on screen items and pick up the lines of golden rings that litter the race track.

The weapon items you pick up are used in different ways during a race. For instance, you swing your arm down in an arc toward the screen as if bowling to toss a giant bowling ball at enemies, but you swipe your arms sideways to throw missiles.

Initially I found the steering controls a bit difficult to use, with my poor Sonic riding his hover board nose into the side of the track for long stretches of time. But once I started stretching my arm out in the direction I was trying to turn, the game seemed to become a bit more responsive.

I still had issues with making jumps, which seemed to require that I jump a bit too soon to launch properly off a ramp.


The game seems like it could be a fun diversion, but I'm not sure I'd want to invest the price of a full Kinect game to pick it up.

The game also supports two-player split-screen mode and when I played it had six riders available, with more to be revealed down the line. There are also going to be "lots more weapons and tracks," the spokesperson told me.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter