Pros: Fun improvements and changes, Just Sweat is new
Cons: some may not like the new Just Sweat
Note: The title for this product indicates the version for Wii U, but the pictured version is for the original Wii. The “Where can you buy it?” links above and below will bring you to options to buy the version for the regular Wii. This review is therefor for the regular Wii version of Just Dance 4.
Last fall was the release of the sixth game in the Just Dance series, Just Dance 4. (Yup, there are 6 games now. There was also Just Dance Summer Party and last fall Just Dance Greatest Hits also hit the stores.) This latest Just Dance brings the same dancing fun, but there have also been some changes to the format and style of the game.
The basics of the game have not changed. Using only a Wii remote, dancers follow the on screen dancer and mirror the movements. Dances are a variety of difficulty levels. Those who have played in the past will be familiar with the dance rating system. If you match the on screen dancer to a tee, you’ll get a “perfect”. There is also “good”, “ok” and lastly an “x” will indicate that the move was incorrect. The better you do, the higher up on the 5-star progress bar you will go. Those are the basics, but on to some of the new features!
One new feature is the creation of a Dancer Card. On several previous versions users could set up a basic profile of just a name. Now there is a Dancer Card. This profile is a little more in depth and keeps track of activity. Users can scroll through the dancer cards and view things like that users three most frequently danced songs. These dancer cards need to be set up prior to starting a dance.
After dancing a song you will find the Mojo Gauge and see if you received style points. The better you do during a song, the higher up your mojo will go. Completing a level will open up something unlockable. Players can also strive to obtain other achievements called Dance Quests that vary from song to song. An example would be getting 5 stars on the progress bar. This will also make your mojo rise. It is pretty simple to fill up a mojo level, so users can frequenly unlock new and fun items.
The unlockables have some older and new results. There are the mash-ups, which have been in past games. These are songs that use choreography from groups of other Just Dance songs. My kids and I like those. Now there are also alternative dances for songs. Are you beginning to think your favorite song’s dance is too easy? Well you just may be able to unlock a harder, more challenging dance version.
I have always been a little iffy about the Duets and Dance Crew songs. Duets are for 2 people interacting during the dance, and Dance Crew is for up to 4 people. I think that doing these with only 1 person looks a little silly sometimes.
Just Dance 4 contniues it's past tradition of a variety of music, going back to Elvis Presely, some 80's music with the B52's, a dance hit from Ricky Martin, and of course some current tunes too. Thanks to this game my daughter is now sucked in by the band One Direction. There's Justin Bieber and Barry White. There's a Bollywood style song and Carrie Underwood. As always, Just Dance strives to have a mixture of songs where there is something for everyone. THe full song list is readily available online.
Those who like Just Dance for the fitness aspect will find that there have been some major changes. You no longer can choose your own songs, and you are not given the week long goal of a certain number of Just Sweat points.
For Just Sweat, you now first choose from a variety of styles, such as Cheerleader Boot Camp, Swinging 60’s workout, or Cardio Fighting Exercise. Next you have the option of playing for 10, 25 or 45 minutes long. Just Dance will then start you out with a warm up, then lead you into Just Dance songs. Your energy will be tracked. The game says that your energy will determine if your next song is “Cool” or “Intense”. Just Dance will also track your K-cals burned. I’m not sure how a K-cal compares to actual calories. Depending on the length of the songs that the game chooses for you a workout may be longer than the time frame you have chosen. I had chosen the 10 mintue Cardio Fighting workout. There was a couple minutes of boxing type warm up, a song, more boxing, another song, etc. That workout ended up as closer to 15 minutes than 10. That’s not a terrible thing when you are dealing with 10 minutes, but if you choose longer workouts, they could end up being longer than you anticipate. At first I didn’t like that I couldn’t choose my own song, but I came to enjoy the new Just Sweat.
Just Dance 4
Just Dance has been incredibly popular since the very first version of the game came out a few years ago. Game play is simple. My kids have been playing since they have been 3 years old. They can easily follow the moves and have been introduced to lots of new types of music. With Just Dance you can choose to turn the on screen lyrics on or off. Because of the kids I choose to turn them off. This game is rated E10+ due to the lyrics, so I just don’t want them reading any lyrics that may end up being inappropriate.
Just Dance 4 has been another fun version of a game that is loved in my house. It is good fun to play as a group or alone. The new harder dance choreography is like adding more songs and fun to the game. The new version of Just Sweat may be a huge change from what previous Just Sweat users have become used to, but it has turned out to be a fun change. Even if you have previous versions of the game, Just Dance 4 is sure to offer the same, if not greater level of fun.