Kinecting The Dots

I bought Microsoft’s Kinect peripheral for the Xbox 360 at the weekend, but after setting it up in the lounge – which is pretty much the perfect place for it in terms of space – I knew it was only a matter of time before my wife would want it to go into my games room. We did, after all, move to a bigger house partly so that she wouldn’t have to have videogames consoles in the lounge!

The thought of putting Kinect in the games room scared me a little due to the space requirements, as I knew that the room as set up was completely ill-equipped to handle the device, and would have to be turned around quite substantially to fit it in. The room’s layout is such that its length comes between the left and right hand walls as you walk in. The gap between the front and rear walls is much narrower, even more so for the half of the room where a bathroom juts out. Before tonight, the games room had my sofa just past the middle-right of the front wall, four or five feet away from a telly unit that was pushed up against the rear wall. The PC was to the right of the TV unit, and there were a couple of coffee tables. Only about half of the room’s space was being properly utilised, but it never seemed likely to me that the rest could be for now, because of the bathroom that goes “into” the depth of the room (imagine an “L” shape jutting out of the front wall, in terms of the layout).

My wife, however, came up with a plan to rejig everything so that the telly unit would go up against the never-used back door on the left hand wall (we always use the sliding doors in the kitchen if we want to go outside), which would leave the whole length of the room open. The sofa would then be turned through ninety degrees and pushed up against the right hand wall. My wife started doing all this while I was out tonight, navigating the horrendous mess of sorting out all the wires (damn modern technology). I helped after I came back from my mum’s this evening, and as it turns out, the new layout leaves me with about 9 feet between Kinect and the sofa, which is a reasonable distance for 2 players to be able to play at the same time. The Kinect sensor is angled so that it can just about see past the narrow end of the room where the bathroom juts out, meaning that there’s a wider play area available at the other end.

There’s more to come, though. The telly is going to be hung on the wall as soon as we get the right type of bracket, and at the moment my surround sound is inactive as the speakers are now in the wrong positions. When my in-laws come up for Christmas, my father-in-law is going to sort that out.

Even just after tonight, I already have a room which both looks better and uses the available space more effectively. Once the telly is up, and the surround sound’s all sorted, it’s going to be awesome.

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