We have two revolutions here... the Zumba
craze which has taken the world by storm and the Kinect for XBox 360
which seems to have taken casual gamers... by storm as well. With that said,
Zumba Fitness will
not appeal to everyone and if I was to make an educated guess here, I think
the majority of gamers will be female as they dance their bodies to a
variety of Latin beats and dance moves.
- Utilizes the controller-free
functionality of Microsoft Kinect to bring the Zumba Fitness
experience home with you in the first interactive game based on the
- Learn and perfect nine different
dance styles: Reggaeton, Merengue, Salsa, Cumbia, Hip-Hop, Mambo,
Rumba, Flamenco and Calypso.
- Includes more than 30 Zumba
routines - some exclusive to the game.
- Follow your on-screen Zumba
instructor's routine in a high voltage party atmosphere. As you fine
tune the steps, the stage and party transforms in dynamic new ways.
- Supports up to four players -- both
locally and online -- as you team up and try to earn the highest
workout score as a group or play against each other in Zumba Attack!
Mode for the ultimate fitness dance off.
- Dance in a range of venues: learn
the basics in the Zumba gym and then take the party to a fantasy
night club, an industrial factory, a skyscraper rooftop and a
futuristic Zumbathon stadium.
- Includes "Learn the Steps"
training, Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced routines for all skill
- Dance steps learned can be taken
with you if you attend a real Zumba class or on the dance floor at
your next party.
Cleverly enough, the creators of Zumba Fitness,
Software have thought that by introducing the world of Zumba to the
Kinect, it will allow gamers to not only play and have some fun but also
lose some kilos. To an extent this works but the biggest problem with
Zumba Fitness are the dance moves which are a little too fast. This is
not to say it's a bad game but coordination is the key.
With the upbeat Latin music, the
moves are quite fast and it would have been if the official Zumba
instructors Tanya, Gina and Zumba creator Beto spent a little bit more
time in explaining the various dance moves during the learning stage of
the game. But just like any game, you need to spend some time learning
and if you persevere, the game will be more enjoyable. The biggest
downfall to Zumba Fitness is the menu system... once again. Just like
quite a few Kinect games, the menu is excruciatingly painful to use. But
once you go get into the game, it's time to ZUMBA!
Thankfully, I had my lovely girlfriend to
assist in this review and with that said, the title supports up to four
players for multiplayer fun with also a sturdy single-player game as well. The
game does support online play for both competitive and co-operative
modes but unfortunately this could not be tested for this review.
Before starting, you need to ensure that
your Kinect has been configured properly or the gameplay will suffer.
Once we got to the crux of the game, Zumba Fitness is a combination of fitness meets dancing and we
did work up a good sweat. As we danced to our hearts content, we had a
ball trying to mimic these Zumba moves with its South American music.
With a variety of dance modes available,
you can play the game for a 5-minute workout or even up to 45 minutes as
you dance along to a variety of Latin inspired dances such as Salsa's
and Samba's. To start your Zumba fitness career, all you need to do is
follow the onscreen character's movements and that's basically it. Just
like Dance Central.
This dance system is coloured coded so if
it's green, it means the player is doing well, however if it turns
orange or red, your coordination is messed up. The good thing about the
colour coordination scheme is that you can rectify your moves quite
easily. It's a great little visual prompt system. Although I enjoyed
Dance Central more, Zumba verges more on the fitness world as opposed to
just a dance game.
Graphically, the title has this real dance
feel to it. The game does mimic all the Zumba characteristics quite well
but in terms of outstanding graphics, the game is a little on the
average side. But then again, this is more a workout/dance game as
opposed to something hardcore. There are a variety of different
"dancing" environments such as the cool Zumbathon stadium or the night
club that does liven things up. The music is the highlight of the title
with all those fast Latin beats that has made Zumba so popular. The
voice acting is a little clichéd and condescending though :)
In conclusion, Zumba Fitness is a
relatively affordable option for getting Zumba in your home as opposed
to the $100+ Zumba DVD set. This game is not for everyone but if you're
looking for a fitness game with some SLAM behind it, this may be for
you. Just be warned that you will need coordination and the lessons
needed to be a little bit more in-depth. Nonetheless, it's definitely
for the casual market and I'm sure fans of Zumba will enjoy! 6/10 for
serious gamers and 7/10 for Zumba fanatics!