Review: Dance Central 2 (Xbox 360)

By Wayne Web

Let’s clear up a couple of things – first, this game is never going to appeal to me as a middl- aged man. Second, I have a niece and nephew it does appeal to and I used them shamelessly to play this game while I took notes. To be fair I did try it, but those attempts ended in lying on the floor exhausted, or refusing to attempt the more ridiculous of moves.

Dance Central 2 is the second in a series designed for use with the Xbox 360 Kinect system that uses the camera to detect body and limb movement to interact with the game console. For Dancing this seems like a match made in heaven as you can put aside controllers and just dance your way to points and success on the dance floor.

DC2 has over 40 songs embedded in the package when you buy it and the promise of more to be downloaded from the Xbox Live platform, which has the real potential of extending the life of the game. All control is ceded to the Kinect with an innovative series of menus utilised by moving your hands in various ways. Alternately, you can yell at the Kinect microphone and activate the voice control, but this is patchy most of the time and requires you to literally yell commands far too often.

Likewise, the detection control occasionally has issues when it appears that the dancer is doing exactly what is required, but still somehow fails. The game system is constantly giving feedback and has many modes for learning, dancing – mucking around or competing against other dancers. My niece and nephew in their early teens were much more adept and liable to get into the game as the music in game was 90 percent to their taste. I only recognized a couple of old-school tracks and the ubiquitous Lady Gaga.

As an innovative use of the Kinect system it is a good example of how well it can work, even though the game was not one I would play often, if ever. But for those who want to play, the game will deliver the music, the moves and the means to learn and perform them.

Pros: Up to date songs and dance moves, good menu system and detection, plenty of choice, appeals to tweens and teens.
Cons: Varying difficulty and occasional detection control issues, limited musical and dance appeal

4 Shacks Out Of 5