Xbox, Listen to Me!

Dance Central is one of the most successful game franchises for the Xbox Kinect. In the games, you learn and perform choreographed dance moves to popular songs. The Xbox Kinect console recognizes your movements and indicates whether your body placement matches the pose of the avatar on the screen.

Many of the songs in Dance Central require you to perform complex dance movements at fast tempos. In Dance Central 2, you can ask your virtual dance coach to slow down when you’re learning new dance steps, courtesy of the Xbox Kinect’s speech recognition software.

To alert the Xbox Kinect console that you’re issuing a speech command, each command must begin with the word “Xbox.” Some available speech commands include:

  • “Xbox, slow down.”
  • “Xbox, record video.”
  • “Xbox, song [song title].”

Watch the short video below to see a demonstration:

An additional feature that isn’t shown in the video above is the ability to use a specific gesture — holding your right arm at a 45 degree angle — to pause the game. Because your speech commands are issued when music is playing, the Xbox Kinect’s speech recognizer will sometimes have difficulty determining what command you issued, because it’s unable to distinguish your voice command from the noise of the song itself. However, if you hold your right arm at a 45 degree angle for four seconds, the game will pause, and you can then issue a voice command without background noise.