Tagged: Wii

South Koreans can ‘just dance’ with K-Pop Dance Festival on the Wii

kpopdancefestival

UPDATE 07/26/2017: K-Pop Dance Festival never got a U.S. release but at E3 2017 Ubisoft announced that Hyuna’s “Bubble Pop” will be featured in Just Dance 2018. Hatsune Miku’s “Love Ward” will also be in the roster and there’s still time for more international artists to be added to the game before its release on October 24th. Check out more details here. The original post follows:

Seeing how Katy’s open plea to Harmonix to make a K-Pop Dance Central continues to be one of our most active posts I figured it was our civic duty to talk about K-Pop Dance Festival. Developed by Skonec, it’s a very Just Dance-like game with vividly colored live action dancers showing you the moves to mimic with the Wii remote.

It was released exclusively in Korea for the Wii at the end of April and I expected to buy it as soon as it popped up on Amazon or Play-Asia… only it never did. I dug around again this morning and haven’t been able to find it anywhere outside of a lone listing on eBay at $50. Then I dug a little more and was reminded that the Wii is region locked.

That makes for a pretty hefty barrier to entry but we can at least check out the tracklist below and Skonec has been posting videos pretty regularly on their YouTube channel of the songs in the game and people playing it.

2010 and newer

  • “Gangnam Style” from Psy
  • “1, 2, 3, 4? from Lee Hi
  • “Beautiful Night” from Beast
  • “Fantastic Baby” from BigBang
  • “You and I” from IU
  • “Shanghai Romance” from Orange Caramel
  • “Apgujeong Nallari” from Sagging Snail(Lee Juck, Yoo Jae-Seok)
  • “Shake It” from Chulssa(Noh Hong-chul, PSY)
  • “Roly Poly” from T-ARA
  • “Ma Boy” from SISTAR19
  • “Supa Dupa Diva” from Dal Shabet
  • “Shy Boy” from Secret
  • “I Don’t Care” from 2NE1

2000’s

  • “Mister” from Kara
  • “Superman” from Norazo
  • “Nobody” from Wonder Girls
  • “Look only at Me“ from Taeyang
  • “10 Minutes” from Lee Hyo Ri

1990’s

  • “Festival” from Uhm Jung hwa
  • “To my Boyfriend” from Fin.K.L.
  • “Tell Me” from Jinusean
  • “Honey” from JYP
  • “Kungttali Syabala” from Clon
  • “In Summer” from Deux
  • “I Know” from Seo Taiji and Boys

1980’s

  • “Last Night Story” from So Bang Cha

 

Wii Mini is a barebones, holiday exclusive for Canada

$99.99. Canada exclusive. Holiday season only. No internet functionality. No GameCube support. It’s a sexxy red/black color combo. It’s a toploader. No confirmation it’ll ever make it out of Canada or be produced after this holiday season.

Only a few of those points mean anything to me but none of them are convincing enough to bother talking about further. Ok, it’s a toploader and I really like top loading consoles. The colors are also awesome.

Done Playing: Domino Rally (Wii)

Up until the moment I started playing Domino Rally I had convinced myself that it would be a sequel to No One Can Stop Mr. Domino. That game had you rapidly and strategically dropping dominoes behind the unstoppable Mister in order to trigger all of the stage’s bizarre surprises in one flawless go. It was a demanding bastard of a game and I really loved it. Domino Rally packs the same kind of peculiar surprises and expects a similar speedy precision but thanks to the ever-unreliable Wii Remote it turns out only mildly fun and mostly a bastard to play.

Leaning heavily on Katamari Damacy, Domino Rally’s stages are backed by catchy J-Pop style tracks and open with low-rent cutscenes of bizarre characters in mundane peril. Minon is the “everyday superhero” that they call on in their time of need, be it retrieving a lost balloon, sinking a critical putt, helping an overburdened father answer a contest-winning phone call, or getting elephants to fall in love. The scenes are short and barely animated but they have just enough style to be charming which is the only thing to soften the blow after you take indirect control.

Minon is always moving but instead of dropping dominoes behind him as in Mr. Domino you lay out a swath of holographic Minon Blocks to keep him moving forward. You can go straight or curve to the left or right and… that’s really all the control you have. With an incomprehensible map and a too-close, overhead view of the world you’ll fumble out a path of holo-minoes to bridge rows of stationary objects that speed up Minon and refill his Minonaide energy. This is anything but automatic, though, as you’ll have to shake the Wii Remote in time with Minon’s quickening steps and then steady your hand to set the next piece before he runs out of room to move. If that happens you’ll play a little balancing game until you can get things moving again but will also lose all your momentum. Along with the Minonaide and speed that steadily deplete as you play there’s also a timer forcing you to play as flawlessly as possible.

This would all make for a fine ‘perfect run’ challenge if the game had reliable controls but the Wii Remote can’t deliver. Going from wild, rhythmic shaking to one of three precise on-screen positions isn’t easy or fun and as Minon speeds up the process only gets more annoying. By the end of each stage my right arm was sore and I was ready to quit but — damn! — those cutscenes are cheeky! The stages escalate in complexity and you’ll retry many of them as you divine the correct sequence of events but there are only eight in total. There’s a token Versus mode and loads of astonishing “memory poems” to find but I’d feel pretty let down if I’d paid more than $10 for what was three hours of playtime.


Outside of my hopes for a Mr. Domino sequel I think what’s most disappointing about Domino Rally is that it never feels like you’re playing with dominoes. Minon could just as easily be bounding across little magical clouds or, hell, he could simply be running on the ground. For a game that puns the word ‘domino’ so excessively there are precious few actual dominoes to be found and that just doesn’t feel right to me. Domino Rally is only entertaining during the parts where you aren’t playing it and by my last check no one has posted all that stuff to YouTube. You’ll have to suffer some punishment to see it yourself and if that’s a dealbreaker for you then skip this outright. If it’s not I’d still recommend hunting for the lowest price you can find.

Done Playing: Muscle March (WiiWare)

I heard by way of a recent Giant Bombcast that Namco Bandai’s WiiWare release, Muscle March, was originally planned as an arcade game in the 90’s. It would definitely fit the gauntlet of peculiar, colorful and loud arcade machines that lined amusement center walls in Japan. I can see it now; a cabinet shaped like a Protein powder bottle, big vertically oriented monitor, players sliding their arms into a pair of gigantic (and inevitably sweaty) foam muscle arms and posing dramatically as they fired credits into the machine.

That spectacle is exactly what I miss about the arcade and it’s exactly what’s missing in Muscle March. Save your Wii Points for something else because you can get most of the experience by watching the video above. Sure, you’ll miss some of the hilarious settings and background madness (it’s almost Katamari-esque how much visual, physical humor is going on; the music too) but it’s not worth even the five bucks it costs.

Actually playing the game doesn’t make it any more fun either. I expected to be comically striking poses to match the absurd appearance of the game’s hideously muscle bound cast. What I wound up doing was sitting as perfectly still as possible, making the tiniest movements so the game registered one of four specific positions to squeeze my character through the musclehead-shaped wall in front of me. Without even a moderately oversized foam arm in sight there’s just nothing outwardly entertaining about it. Even multiplayer mode requires each person to take turns at preternaturally anticipating what rapidly approaching man-hole they have to match. See, even that last sentence was more fun!

Tiring and uncomfortable, it’s a problem that I’m starting to have with most Wii games. As easily amused as I am by Japanese shenanigans and quirky concepts I’m just tired of Wii motion controls. In a world full of bro-tastic space marines and mythological mashups I love that Muscle March exists outside of Japan. It would just be more enjoyable as the loading screen for a new Ridge Racer than as a standalone game that you have to pay money for.