Review: Just Dance 4
When it comes to motion control there’s one game genre that has benefited more than any other, the dancing games. Before your Kinects, Moves and Wiis game along you were restricted to a slippery, plastic mat and games were reduced to a elongated button combo. Still, now we have motion control and with the Kinect we have full body tracking, meaning more accurate dancing than ever. It’s time to get off your sofa and head down to funky town as we take on Just Dance 4.
Straight from the off, Just Dance 4 features one of the best Kinect controlled menus I’ve come across. You just have to hover your hand over the thing you want to click and move you hand towards the screen, as if you were actually pushing a button. Obviously Playstation 3 and Wii gamers don’t have this problem but Kinect menus can sometimes be a frustrating experience, that isn’t the case here.
Just Dance 4 is focussed around party play, getting four friends in front of the TV and shaking their funky stuff and with 43 tracks there’s plenty of funk to be shaken. The mix of tracks is excellent, from modern pop hits such as, ‘Call me Maybe’ by Carly Rae Jepsen and ‘Superbass’ by Nicki Minaj – to classics by Barry White and ‘Final Countdown.’ I know it’s a cliché but there’s pretty much something for everyone – the inclusion of ‘Wild Wild West’ by Will Smith put a huge smile on my face, I was tempted to give the game five stars just for that.
There’s another Kinect dance title out there that allows you to pick a song, then pick the difficulty you’d prefer. Just Dance 4 decides to take a different approach and have the difficulty locked to each song. For example, ‘So What!’ by Pink is marked as an ‘easy’ song, whilst ‘Wild Wild West’ is apparently a ‘hard’ song. As the game is aimed for the party goer, it’d be nice if you could change the difficulty for the individual songs, just in case you have the rhythm of a potato.
This does mean that the game is quite tricky for first timers, the on screen dancer will be jiggling away like a madman and you feel like you’re playing catch up. Of course, with dance experience it’ll get a little easier. In the bottom right you have the flash cards that show you the upcoming moves but they can be confusing at times. The tracking itself is decent, when I felt I was doing well I was getting ‘perfect’ when I knew I was messing up the game was telling me so.
The majority of the songs allow for 1-4 players and they do a good job of getting dancers to interact with each other, whether it be a simple high five or jumping over each other, just be careful with that. After you’ve finished the song, providing you haven’t collapsed, you’ll be give ‘Mojo’ or experience to you and I. You’ll also get extra ‘Mojo’ should you complete some of the fairly simple objectives for each song, these are things like ‘Get 5 stars’ or ‘Play with 4 players.’ As you level up you’ll unlock extra features but these are small things like pictures and battle songs. Ever wanted Ricky Martin to take on Skrillex? Well, today is your lucky day.
Not only does Just Dance 4 help you get on down with your bad-self, it can also help you loose a bit of weight – that’s the claim anyway. You will definitely work up a sweat, I like to think I’m in decent shape, go to the gym regularly and all that jazz but Just Dance 4 got me sweating. To help with your weight loss there’s a Just Sweat mode which will get your heart rate up and give you some idea at how many calories you’re losing.
Just Dance 4 is the party dance game you might have been waiting for. It’s the only game I know of where you can dance along to a guy dressed as a lobster. With a great track-list and 4-player support it’s bound to get people up off the sofa. New players might struggle with it at first and the flashcards could be a bit clearer but when you’ve got four drunk friends flailing around the living room, do they really care about their score?