Dance Central 3
The biggest and best reason to have or buy Kinect is still Dance Central. With this third episode in the series of dancing games for Xbox360 Harmonix only confirms their superiority in the genre. Good news for those who want to play “So you think you can dance” in their living room.
We’re not going to explain the game once again in detail, but you still have to mimic the movements you get to see on screen (both animated as through some sort of cards). There’s no delay and thanks to the red lines around your wrong body parts you get very good feedback on what you need to be working on. On top of that you can also practise the songs with the diverse and improved practise modes. The difficulty ranges from very easy to a level for real dancers and as such you can also look at it as a sports game with which you’ll burn quite some calories in a more fun way than most fitness games.
The new story mode is probably made for lone dancers to have fun as well. It seems loosely inspired on the Nintendo DS game Elite Beat Agents and also here you have to play the hero with your dancing partners. A bad guy wants to make your favorite form of art to something very boring and you get to safe creativity by travelling back in time and beating several bosses in a dance battle. All kinds of time periods and styles pass by and as you progress new stuff gets unlocked. It’s all a bit far-fetched but all in all well worked out.
Kinect works precise enough to spot the difference between right and wrong moves, but also just forgiving enough that a wrongly placed foot doesn’t per se lead to a fault. The choice of songs is again very varied up-to-date with amongst others Katy Perry, 50 Cent, Justin Bieber, Flo Rida and Black Eyed Peas, but also some titles that have made dancing history are present. Macarena, YMCA and I Will Survive are ideal for when friends come to visit and this is more than ever a party game.
Next to the career, a fitness part and the Perform mode – in which you can choose songs and dance alone or with a partner – the new Party Time catches the eye. This is like some sort of jukebox that plays songs at random and where you can start or stop dancing whenever you want; just raising your hand is enough. Even better, there are several innovations like Keep the Beat in which you can freestyle and the game decides who’s doing best, and you can also battle against each other in a more classic way. Most fun is no doubt the possibility in which you get to make your own move by repeating it a few times (the Xbox suggests a genre like “stupid”) after which the other player has to copy you as best as possible. Really fun!
Dance Central 3 may be ‘just’ a dancing game, and already the third on X360, but it does perfectly what you expect from such a title. Offering excellent gameplay, thousands of moves, a nice tracklist with the possibility to get more songs, and as most important additions a more than enjoyable story mode and an excellent Party Time mode. Something for everyone, packaged in a professional and beautifully finished wrapping with all kinds of small tweaks and improvements that make Dance Central 3 the best dancing game of this generation. Even the typical and sometimes annoying “attitude” that seems so necessary in such game has been limited to a minimum. Only for this alone already you should consider getting Kinect.