I went to the Microsoft store in Mission Viejo.
The two Kinect displays they have are just outside the store in the main corridor. Which made trying it very intimidating considering it was 4th of July weekend and there were a lot of people around.
One display was bowling. The bowling is pretty cool. A lot of people were throwing 1-pin and gutter balls at first. You do have to watch the position of your wrist. If you pronate (as a lot of people do), the ball will tend to go in that direction. I was intimidated by so many people watching that I ended up bowling the way other people were (didn't want to look weird). So I didn't try a full bowling motion. I just cupped the ball and threw but I tried not to rotate the wrist and did pretty well. I'm a beginner in real life bowling so I bowl straight down the middle of the lane rather than true bowling where you hook the ball in.
The other screen was the Adventures one. It was pretty neat. I doubt I'd buy it though. But kids found ways to play it to do much better than I expected. Like if you're in midair after a jump, if you jump again, it'll pull the raft up again. Adults were the ones that actually needed instructions. The little kids just jumped in and were better at controlling the raft.
The Adventures game can have jittery movement like your character would jitter sometimes even when you weren't. Control was pretty good. Yes, it has lag but it's like Wii lag so if you're used to controlling the Wii, the feel will be similar. but you don't have to fight the lag. not like the Wiimote where if you move it too fast, it'll sometimes spaz out.
I think the Adventures game definitely has more lag than the bowling game.
I think if you're the type to be intimidated by crowds, it's hard to play well. Like when I went to nightclubs with friends and girls would tell me to move my hips more and I thought I was, but then I looked at myself dancing in a mirror and I barely moved. That's what it's like. The adults would have these tiny leans but they set up the river course to make you move. in the online vids and fallon show, the river doesn't seem to change direction much. but when you're playing it, it seems fast and really moves around. it was like when you first see someone playing DDR and it seems easy. but then you get on it and the arrows seem so fast and you're a half step behind and missing the arrows. you swear that you're hitting the arrows but you're missing.
the kids would lean for more subtle turns but had no problem with taking major steps to make the craft go on the big turns.
So that's it for this visit. I think I'll come back on a weekday some time to test out the limits of the system where I don't have a zillion people watching me. they only had bowling and Adventures on display. But I read that the stores have all the Kinect demos available to them, including Dance Central. But there's no way in hell I'm going to try dancing in front of all these people. I'm a shy guy when I'm surrounded by a ton of people I don't know all looking at me. my dad said I was super stiff and was a back seat advisor, telling me to lean. I wish the demo was inside the store but I guess they wanted max exposure.
inside the store, they had a nice fifa demo on the big screen. i worked a kid for a goal.
they had a nice demo of the lakers. Fisher was bricking, as always.
they removed all the 360 skinit displays. if you ever visited this store before, they had all the 360s skinned with skinit skins. really slick looking vinyl skins. you can pick a skin on any of the PCs and then they print it in the backroom. got me to buy a UCLA skin for my 360 arcade. but since they removed all references to the old 360, they had to get rid of these old skinned 360s. a shame because I really liked the skins. The Lakers jersey one and the Cowboys jersey skins look awesome. hopefully skinit will make new skins for the new 360.
but I doubt I'll be picking up a new 360. I'm willing to wait for the next gen consoles to come out. I have a feeling that next year will be an announcement and the year after will be the new systems.