|System: Wii*, Xbox 360, PS3|
|Release: October 9, 2012|
|Screen Resolution: 480p||Comic Mischief, Lyrics|
The Battle Mode is a new entry, and a fun one at that. It's a five-round, one-on-one dance-off, with thirty-five second music clips and a skirmish-type routine. Nailing your moves better than your opponent will reduce their hit points. Whoever wins the most rounds out of five becomes the lord of the dance, with all the bragging rights included. It's a way for some light competition, though my wife still only tolerated my victories for a brief period. After she walked out, I decided to do another motion control test with nobody controlling the opposing player in Battle Mode. Shockingly, even with nobody holding the other Wii Remote, I still somehow lost a couple rounds. Care to explain that Ubisoft?
Now, back to the mojo, because for an RPG buff like me, gaining experience is key. Just Dance 4 gives you some good incentives to capitalize your mojo intake. First, another new and welcome feature comes in the form of Dance Quests. It's basically a list of objectives for each song, such as obtaining a certain star level, completing alternate routines, or nailing the Gold Moves in the song. Each time you check one off, more mojo is added to the pile. Also, to encourage you to try different songs, after each dance a random trio of songs will be labeled with a 2x mojo multiplier.
Just Sweat is an easy and fun excuse to label the game as an aerobics trainer. There are five different workout sessions, tailored toward a different exercise and/or music style, like Cheerleaders Boot Camp and Sweat Around The World. Each takes you through a timed session, roughly ten, twenty-five, or forty-five minutes. It blends original tunes for stretching and aerobics with songs from the game's playlist. You still gain mojo for your efforts, and you'll even have objectives to complete. But, more importantly, it shows how many calories you burned, as well as tracking the cool or intense segments of the workout. You can then customize the song loadout if you want to keep things easy or break out a hard sweat. It's not as elaborate as some of the dedicated exercise games out there, but it's more than satisfactory as an extra feature for Just Dance, and probably more fun than the other workout beatings you've probably suffered through.
It's amazing that I managed to make it to the end of this review without mentioning how fun it is as a party game where you get to watch other people look silly as they try to mimic the choreography on the screen. Just Dance 4 has a load of fresh songs for fans who've finally tired of the previous game's selection. The controls (at least for the Wii) still need some tightening, but Ubisoft is doing a great job with each installment, adding some new modes, adjusting things that may not have succeeded in the past, and delivering a consistently fun rhythm game in a genre that seems ready to be put out to pasture.
Date: October 11, 2012