Thursday, July 25, 2013

Just Dance (then just call an ambulance)

First, let me apologize for not being more regular with these blog posts. Kiblitzing was supposed to be for more casual observations about video games, but somehow each post turns into a massively long review, on the rare chance that something gets posted at all. I've gotta keep reminding myself, this isn't 1UP! I can post whatever I want, even if it's stupid!

Anyway, I went out yard sailing today with me madre today, and came back with a small handful of discs. Among them was a copy of Ubisoft's Just Dance 3 for the Nintendo Wii, which I purchased for a quite reasonable dollar. That's a steal compared to my other Wii music game, the ill-considered port of Samba de Amigo, which cost nearly three times that at a previous garage sale. (And that, in turn, is a bargain compared to whatever ungodly price I paid for the Dreamcast version of Samba and its maracas ten years ago. Maybe I can learn to live with the Wii version of the game after all...)

Not shown: fat gamer on a stretcher.
(image courtesy of
After a brief test play, I've got just two observations about Just Dance 3. The first is that I forgot how dangerous these music games can be if you're out of shape! I was delighted when I found Take on Me in the playlist, but a song that demanding will just about kill you if you're lugging around fifty extra pounds. No matter how many times I play a game like this, I'm always surprised at how much the experience takes out of me. (It's likely because I'm not playing them frequently enough.)

My second thought is this. What Keebler magic is Ubisoft using to get the game to track your movements so accurately with just one point of reference? I'm sure the motion control isn't perfect, and if I wasn't spending all my time panting and clutching my heart, I would notice the sleight of hand. However, when you're actually playing the game, the illusion is pretty damned seamless. I would like to have a silhouette of myself on the screen to know for sure if I'm nailing each gesture, but for a dollar, I'm willing to live without it.

On a related subject, I found (but ultimately passed on) a copy of Wii Music for about three dollars. The game was savaged by reviewers as a toy of little substance or purpose, but for that price, I was sorely tempted to take the plunge anyway. If it's really as laid back as the reviews suggest, at least I wouldn't end each session sprawled on the floor.

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