#368 Dance Dance Revolution

Posted: 1st December 2012 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , ,

198th played so far

Genre: Music
Platform: Arcade
Year of Release: 1998
Developer: Konami
Publisher: Konami

Okay, so the original Dance Dance Revolution wasn’t exactly released outside of Japan. Instead we in the UK got a game called Dancing Stage.

As a kid I had the first home release of a DDR game called Dance Stage EuroMix which contained songs like ‘Word Up’ and ‘Video Killed The Radio Star’. I loved it and played it as a way to lose weight (and this was ten years ago… the battle continues) and I looked around to find a mate of mine at the window laughing their head off.

I lost some self-confidence that day… ah well. This blog made me dance in a Manchester shopping centre so I guess things have improved in a decade.

We played the game while visiting the arcade in Trafford Center in Manchester with our good friend Mike (who helped out with pictures and amused himself with us dancing). Thanks, it was a good day (and next time you can join us)

Our Thoughts

A lot of rhythym games come down to the same formula: hit buttons or equivalent in the right order, at the right time, based on the beat and melody of the music. The differences aren’t from that formula, but how it’s given form. Whether it’s the lanes of Audiosurf, the guitar of Guitar Hero (or spin-offs), the drums of Donkey Konga or the turntable of DJ Hero and Beatmania, the setup is the same but the actual movements are different.

In the case of Dance Dance Revolution, the controller is the now known dance mat. Its shape vaguely reminiscent of a giant d-pad, you have giant buttons to the left and right, as well as forward and back. You stomp them when you’re told to on the screen (note that when we played, ‘stomp’ was right. The pads don’t trigger by just stepping on them, you have to push) down. You really notice this on the down button since it really is unnatural to stomp on the back foot.

Long has it been known that these sorts of games are a good workout, these games tend to have estimates on calories burnt during each dance (something you can cheat by repeatedly tapping your foot). It’s a nice feature and was arguably one of the first games marketed globally which had considered such a market. Interesting fact: in some countries this form of arcade play has been actually classed as a sport. A fun one at that.

The soundtrack itself REALLY varied depending on the region and whether or not it was an arcade version, home version or re-release. Whilst they are fairly varied there is an emphasis on music you can dance to. For a game with dance in it’s name (twice) this makes sense really.

Final Thoughts

I thought Final Furlong was bad with the whole mounting a metal horse and gyrating on it in public so me keeping pace with a remix of ‘Butterfly’ by smile.dk. However, unlike the aforementioned horse racing game this really was a more enjoyable experience and made me want to play more of it if I had only had the coinage… makes me think I should get a copy of Just Dance 2 for the Kinect. Hmmmmm….