Friday, 13 January 2012

Get Fit and Have Fun with Just Dance 3

With so many of us making New Year's Resolutions involving health and fitness, it is good to find something that will help with our quest to get fit and is also a lot of fun at the same time.  I know from my own personal experience, I am  far more likely to stick to an exercise that I enjoy.  Getting up and dancing to great music is much more appealing to me than jogging in the cold, wet January mornings! Plus, if the whole family can get involved I'm even more motivated.  Ubisoft have the perfect solution...a game for fitness fanatics, fun loving families and music lovers alike, Just Dance 3.

Just Dance 3 is the perfect excuse to get your groove on with the family and friends and dance yourself fit to 49 great songs.  With tunes from the 70's to the present day, there is a dance for everyone.  Up to four players can dance together and some of the dances are duets or group dances, which adds a real element of fun!  There are Dance Mash Ups and unlockable rewards to achieve.  The Just Sweat mode gives you a dedicated workout plan.  The Just Party mode provides a non-stop dance-a-thon with no need for navigation to halt the dancing!!  You can also download extra songs from the online shop using Microsoft points.

We were sent Just Dance 3 for the XBox Kinect which is my favourite console of the moment.  Having no controllers to contend with makes it perfect for Freddy, aged 2, to join in and dance with his sisters.  There is no worry of him throwing a controller through the TV screen!  The dance genre of games is really a perect fit for the Kinect and Just Dance 3 does not disappoint at all.

The game itself is very easy to navigate.  You can scroll through the songs and see a snippet of each one before choosing one to dance to.  Stickmen on the bottom of the screen instruct you to the dance moves and you then just need to mirror the dancer.  You are rated on your moves giving you a score.  My girls get very competitive, perfecting their moves to get high scores!

This is a world away from the dance mats that were all the rage a few years ago.  The technology is amazing, recognizing your body moves.  The lyrics also come up on screen and some key phrases can be sang aloud for extra points as the Kinect also has voice recognition.  So even if you are too shy to dance, you can join in by singing along.

There is an extra mode on the Kinect version of Just Dance 3, Just Create, where players can come up with their own choreography, save their routines and share them with friends or online.  Perfect for any budding choreographers out there!

This game ticked all the boxes for me.  It gets us all up and active regardless of ability.  The songs are fun, with great dance routines that are easy to follow but challenging.  It is just as fun to watch others playing as it is to join in.  It brings a party atmosphere to any occasion.  The animations and costumes onscreen are really entertaining for younger players.  The dynamic environments change as you progress, delivering some surprises along the way.  It is an easy, uncomplicated game that delivers fun and exercise.  There are no penalties for getting it wrong or having a rest mid moves (other than not scoring points for that section), so you can pick straight up and get going again without feeling demoralised.  (This is a real positive for me after being made to feel like a loser on Wii Fit if I didn't achieve high scores...I don't need a game to demoralise me, I'm doing my best OK!!)  This game is perfect for me and mine!!  We have our favourite tracks already and are getting our moves down!

We have previously reviewed Just Dance Kids and I have to say Freddy and Kizzy prefer the adult version.  Don't underestimate the ability of children on Just Dance 3.  Freddy at 2 absolutely loves it and asks for his 'dancing game' and his favourite song 'Jump' regularly.  It has totally replaced the gentler, kid friendly version as game of choice.  It is keeping them fit, teaches them some moves and introduces them to three decades of great tunes!

Here is a video of them dancing along.  (Check out  Fred's purple tu-tu/stripey bodysuit combo!! Perfect dancewear for a toddler!)

You can buy Just Dance 3 from Amazon for £22.99.


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