Kinectimals – Safe or Dangerous?

February 22, 2011, By Christian Cawley

The new Xbox 360 Kinect game Kinectimals (which you will see a trailer for below) has been released this week, allowing everyone in the family to enjoy the experience of interacting with some of the world’s most feared animals.

Kinectimals - a danger hiding in a home console game?

Using the Kinect controller system, Kinectimals enables children and parents alike to build friendships with onscreen animals that will come running when they hear your voice, respond to commands like “jump,” “roll-over” and “play dead,” and purr with joy when you scratch them behind the ears!

In addition to the default creatures a selection of plush big cats (White Tiger, African Lion, Asiatic Cheetah, Bornean Clouded Leopard and Iberian Lynx) can be bought from Toys “R” Us and other stores, all of which can be added to the game using Microsoft Tag technology.

It all looks lots of fun – but just how safe is a game that encourages children to approach and interact with creatures that will easily, effortlessly and without a second thought cut them down in real life?

There seems to be a considerable degree of “cutesiness” about Kinectimals – but while giving this interaction in a virtual sense might allow a rare opportunity for children to see animals they might never see in real life, there fact remains that the game builds familiarity with the creatures, something that is potentially dangerous…

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