Alas the moment has come where we can put back on our dancing shoes and bust a move to the newest iteration of our favorite dance game. Doing what it does best Dance Central returns with some new characters, new songs and more modes to get you all excited. Dance Central 2 not only delivers a fresh experience for veterans, but keeps the party going for newcomers to the series.
Luckily if your new to the series the game doesn’t just throw you in the mix expecting you know anything. In fact it might actually be more helpful at explaining itself then the first one did. When navigating through the modes, visual queues will come up about game functions. The newest mode to work you through the various songs and ways to play is Crew Challenge. Here you’ll unlock new dancers, outfits and arenas while facing off crews to gain respect. Each crew has a specific number of stars you will need to earn before moving on to the next. It all leads to an unknown group which you’ll have to beat to claim victory and take them down.
New features also boast this years Dance Central giving players the ability to dance two player side by side. You can either dance cooperatively or dance battle which has an new element of competitiveness. A number of dance moves will come up and the fastest one to complete them will achieve the points of said moves. The Break it Down mode will now let you go back to individual moves you had trouble with to try and master. This all works with the games new voice commands via the Kinect. Song selection, slowing down moves and skipping them could not be made easier.
Accuracy is key as Dance Central is still one of the most accurate games Kinect has available, giving you direct indication and feedback when your doing something wrong during a song. Aside a pretty hefty track list you also have the ability to import your songs from the first Dance Central with the code it comes with and 400 MSP. What this also does is give you the ability to play any song from the first game with the new two player feature which I found to be great. Purchasing songs in game has also been made easier with it’s new menu.
Song selection is very important thing in a game like this and they have done fairly well at that. La Roux’s Bulletproof, Digital Underground’s The Humpty Dance and Usher feat. Lil’ Jon & Ludacris’s Yeah! are among some of the hits. I can’t help but feel a bit disappointed with songs that are left out and certain songs chosen from albums. Any song from Diddy’s Last Train to Paris album, Come to Me from Press Play, any Justin Timberlake song from his two albums, LMFAO, LL Cool J, and Chris Brown could have made the list. With these things you can’t please everyone so they’re mere observations of how I personally feel. Diddy’s Mo Money Mo Problems would have been my number one choice song to have made the cut.
Online play would have also really benefited from this release. This game is seen as the most competitive dance game out there so online play would only bring it up a level. Duet dance routines would have also been great as they have been making their way onto other games recently. An overall bigger variety of songs could have also open the doors a bit. I’m not entirely sure if Dance Central is only suppose to be a Dance/Hip-Hop top 40’s game but it has pretty much locked into that category?
What Harmonix was able to deliver was a fresher experience to the premier dance game out there. With the new additions along with new dance moves and intuitive gameplay we’ve learned to love about Dance Central you will not be disappointed here. Their’s no denying with the first games release brought a certain expectation but the game delivers on most fronts. New dance games are popping out like leaves in spring and while some are actually closing the gap on features I personally think this is still the best available. Dance Central 2 has the ability to take over any party or social space with plenty of laughs while your dancing your ass off and at the end is what the games all about.