|System: X360||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Inis||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Microsoft||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Nov. 18, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
One of Lips most touted features is the music importing feature. This feature allows you to use music from either your HDD or a personal music device (such as iPod or Zune) to import your own songs. While there are no note bars to sing along with, the game still gives you points based on the noises you do make (no matter whether they are correct or not.) This feature is pretty cool, and certainly gives party-focused players a lot to work with. For instance, if you wanted to sing a rare or unreleased song from your personal collection at your next party like The Star Wars Gangsta Rap by Bentframe or The Picard Song by Dark Materia, you can (although embarrassment may come at your own expense.)
Although Lips is generally a local experience, there is an online community aspect of the game where you can challenge online friends to a song battle. However, this is not a head-to-head battle, and this challenge simply means that the other person will receive a notice of the challenge and will have seven days to try and get a higher score. This mode is very disappointing, as I would have really loved to have seen a full online mode in a karaoke title., This is one area where Lips definitely sticks to conventions, and I think it is worse for it.
The visuals in this title are very dynamic and presented in 1080i. Although the HD quality is lost on a lot of the music videos, the menu design is very nice to look at and fully customizable. You can choose different backgrounds and note bar color schemes, and the whole thing is presented very nicely.
Overall, Lips is a very exciting first effort from Microsoft. The innovative microphone peripheral, accelerometer-based mini-games, medal system, and the ability to import your own songs make this title stand out from the crowd. However, this titles short and conventional track list, as well as its lack of online play really hinders it from being a true SingStar killer. But if history is any indication, we will probably see more Lips titles in the future, and I am excited to see where this franchise will go.
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Staff Contributor