Just Dance 2 is the sequel to the original popular motion sensing dance game Just Dance on the Wii that came out last year.
The concept for Just Dance is simple: imitate the moves of the on screen dancer and score points – anyone can play. It works by the motion detection picking up your movements while you hold the Wii remote in your hand.
Just Dance 2: The Game
I never played the first Just Dance game, so I’ve nothing to compare the sequel with. Put the Just Dance 2 disc into your Wii and the main menu loads up really quickly. The options available to you are split into Dance, Store and Extras. Dance is the obvious choice for most, but the Store is where you can purchase new tracks to dance to while the Extras menu features the game options and credits. An option of sweating it out in Just Sweat is a personal favourite, challenging the player to achieve a minimum amount of dancing a day.
First impression of Just Dance 2 is pretty good. The game has a fantastic visual style to it, unique to each of the 40 routines on the disc. 40 routines means there’s plenty choice of dancing to suit your mood, ranked by technicality and how much of a work out each will give you. It’s easy to pick up and play, using the Wii remote in your right hand without the nunchuk attached to match the movements of the on-screen avatar.
I was surprised to see a warm up was hidden inside Extras. In the name of good practice I went with the game’s warm up suggestions, a three minute basic cardio with no emphasis on leg movement or warm ups (I wasn’t warm either). Why is such a key part of any dance class hidden away like that?
Just Dance – For the Win?
You have to think: who is this game aimed at? Women getting ready for a night out? Most definitely. Men who are shy of dancing? I’d say so. As an ice breaker at parties? Of course.
There’s an emphasis on repetitions in Just Dance 2. Some could argue that technically it’s a cardio warm up as opposed to proper dancing, although once you get your feet involved it all becomes the same. Pictograms on screen tell you the next move coming up which you repeat until the next 8 bar, although unlike other participating games like Guitar Hero their appearances don’t correlate to a beat leaving you to play catch up to your on screen counterpart. In fact, some moves are so cheesy and off beat, or skipping from the beat to lyrics with no logical reason, its criminal!
The thing about Just Dance 2 being accessible to all gamers, casual or dancers, is the use of commercial dancers for the motion sensing.
That means if you’re used to a free style of dancing (ie, you dance at parties lots but don’t consider yourself a pro), or trained in a non-commercial style you might have trouble winning at the game. Of course, winning isn’t everything, but I speak for most competitive dancers in saying that a game that tells you you’re off beat won’t go down too well. So watch your arm lines!
All danced out
One problem I have is there’s no to unlockable bonuses on the game. Load it up and the entire playlist is available for you to choose from. When your mates have left the party it doesn’t leave a lot of longevity after.
As for crowing the winning dancers, there’s no high score board for reclaiming your reign at the top of the league table either. Come on guys!
I wont lie. Just Dance 2 is a simple, fun game, great for entertaining your guests at a party. Fatboy Slim will get the party jumping. It’s Raining Men will get the women grooving. And Pussycat Dolls… never mind.
If you’re a dancer though you’ll approach it with caution, as it bears a very close resemblance to doing a commercial dance class warm up.
Although the Wii doesn’t sense the motion of your legs, some more attention should probably be given to footwork to break inexperienced dancers into moving their limbs or risk them looking like the drunk inlaws dancing at a wedding.
If all else fails, just dance!
We were at the UK Just Dance 2 launch party – you can see a selection of photos over on our blog!