FRU | Review
FRU is a puzzle platformer that features an innovative use of Kinect, in which your silhouette becomes a “portal” between two worlds.
You will find yourself solving puzzles by strategically positioning your body, combining physical interaction with traditional platforming.
The game features four completely different chapters, all based around our innovative use of the silhouette, with a unique twist to each one of them.
In addition to moving and balancing your body to solve levels, you’ll also find yourself swimming inside your silhouette, striking crazy poses to activate contraptions, and awkwardly tiptoeing to avoid dangerous hazards!
- Innovative, never seen before use of Kinect
- Four different chapters, with completely unique ways of using the main mechanic
- 110 Levels there to prove that, and 24 Extra Collectibles as if the game wasn’t challenging enough!
- Our original E3 2014 Co-op Build ready to be unlocked!
- Achievements that ask you to move muscles you didn’t even know you had!
The much maligned Kinect sensor is sadly underused in todays games, but the small team at Through Games in the Netherlands have made a game that will have a huge number of Xbox One owners dusting off their sensors and rejoicing.
The Dutch have given us many things over the years, legalised prostitution, legalised cannabis, the Cruyff turn and Marco Van Bastens sublime volley in the 1988 European Championship Final. We can now add to the list, the best Kinect game to date.
Fru is a delight to play and I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve said ‘wow, that’s really clever’.
What the game does is use your own silhouette, as captured by the Kinect Sensor, to merge two different ‘worlds’ together and you have to work out how to get from one side of the current level to the other. There is no lag between the movement of your body and the silhouette depicted on the screen and this is key in progressing through some of the more tricky levels.
The game is split up into 4 chapters. Chapter 1 is a nice gentle introduction into how the game works and how your silhouette affects what is happening on the screen.
You can see me play through Chapter 1 on our You Tube channel here:
Your character is a little girl wearing a fox mask and at the end of each chapter there are a couple of lines of dialogue that explain why. I won’t spoil it for anyone though…..buy it and play to see why she has a mask.
Chapter 2 involves using your silhouette as a mobile swimming pool to progress through each level.
Chapter 3 uses switches that make platforms appear and disappear depending on which switches are covered.
Chapter 4 is the fire levels, you’ll be sweating but not from the heat of the lava.
The game aesthetically is very pleasing to look at and the music in the background is quite haunting. Seeing some of the level that looks shabby, being instantly and seamlessly renewed by your shadow passing over it is very pleasing to behold.
Some of the levels are designed as such that you need to stretch and twist your body into some quite spectacular shapes in order for the masked girl to make it across. Also there is no set way to traverse the screen, many combinations and shapes can be used to get the masked girl to where she needs to go.
As you can see from the screenshot above and the video further above, I’m not a slender chap and some of the positions I had to get into brought loud guffaws (not a word you hear everyday) from my watching son. In fact he loved watching me play it so much that he couldn’t wait to try it himself. He’s smaller and was soon showing me up as he sped through the levels.
This brings me to the length of the game. Although it’s quite short, took me around 5 hours to complete, this in no way detracts from the pleasure and replayability of the game. There is also an achievement for speed running Chapters 1-4 in 40 minutes or less (I won’t be getting that one).
There are 24 golden masks in the game and if you collect them all you get access to the bonus level which is in fact the prototype that Through Games showcased the game with at various Expos.
Fru is a breath of fresh air in a market saturated with FPS and MMORPG and it shows the capability of using the Kinect, which in my humble opinion isn’t used enough by the so called AAA games.
I ached alot and sweated more whilst reviewing this game, but I regret nothing. I really hope that Fru 2 happens in the future.
Fru is available now from Xbox Store .
If you have Kinect then I believe you should own this game, it really is very, very good. I’m giving it a deserved score of 9/10
Code kindly provided by Through Games