Dance Dance Revolution Universe 3ESRB:
Platform: Xbox 360
The DDR franchise is celebrating its 10th anniversary. Many dance moves have been performed over the years in Arcades, basements and living rooms. A few pounds have been shed as well. I also believe that DDR is a big driving force behind the current dance revolution. Look at all the dancing reality TV shows and look how popular dancing is with today’s youth. You can’t tell me that DDR hasn’t played a hand in this dance revolution.
The latest addition to the DDR franchise is DDR Universe 3 (DDRU3) for the Xbox 360. Keeping a franchise fresh is a hard thing, especially after ten years. This doesn’t present a challenge for DDR though.
Graphics really have never been a big feature of any DDR title. The focus has always been on interactivity and physical play. For a DDR title the graphics are pretty cool but compared to most other 360 titles there is no comparison.
The game is packed with 70 toe tapping, hip swinging’ and foot stomping dance songs. Gone are the days of the cheesy Japanese Karaoke tunes. There are a few hit songs like “Tainted love” and “Sweet Dreams”. While playing turn the lights down and crank the tunes. No need to go into any lengthy description here. The music is dance music and it’s designed to get you dancing. Does it? Yes.
DDRU3 will appeal to DDR rookies and Vets alike. The game has a few new modes like DJ and City mode.
With DJ mode you can scratch, mix, fade and add many other special effects to the library of 70 songs. You use the analog sticks and bumpers to make your own mixes. This was fun but the novelty wore off after a while. The idea here is to dance to your own tunes. This is a cool feature but unless you’re a professional DJ or choreographer your music probably won’t translate well to the dance floor. It’s fun to try though. City mode is where the real challenge lies in DDRU3. In fact, for DDR rookies I would suggest breaking your dancing shoes in other modes. In city mode you are playing against bosses and as you work your way up the dancing food chain these bosses become very difficult. For DDR veterans this new challenge is the difference between buying this game or not. DDRU3 also has the usual multiplayer modes both online and at home. The multiplayer feature in DDRU3 is pretty much the same as DDRU2.
DDRU3 does have a freestyle mode, or as I like to call it kronking. There really is no rhyme or reason to this mode. No keeping to the time or beat. Just do what you want on the pad and have fun. Jump up and down like the village idiot or freak out like a 10-year old hopped up on a box of smarties. This is just a plain goofing around mode. In some ways it’s perfect for toddlers and small children. They can go up and make the lights blinks and make noises. Sometimes I think with a mode like this it won’t be long before we see these in day cares.
For people new to the whole DDR experience this game is very appealing. Beginner and freestyle mode are great areas for newbies to get their feet wet. Once you’ve got your confidence up and are feeling good about your moves City Mode is your next step. Here is where the real challenge begins and where you really start to establish yourself and your style begins to shine. Do well in City mode and you will never have to be worried about getting served.
Unfortunately for DDR veterans City Mode is where the challenge begins for you. So you have to ask yourself is it worth it? I can’t answer this for you but I can say that the bosses are freaking hard and will be a challenge no matter your skill level.
As I mentioned earlier this is an interactive game and an addictive one at that. It gets kids and adults off the couch and on the dance floor. I’ve never heard of anyone not enjoying themselves or getting fat from dancing. This game is great family entertainment, a great way to bond with the kids, and great exercise. If you don’t have it and you own a gaming console then get it.