Everyone loves the Wii, right? And what could be more fun than singing and dancing? With the possible exception of ridding the world of June Sarpong through an elaborate machine-o-death, nothing. So Boogie – a singing and dancing game for the Wii – should be one of the funnest (shut up, it’s a perfectly good word) things since Wii Sports. But, dear reader, it isn’t.
For a start, the track line-up is entirely devoid of highlights, and the levels of Jamiroquai present vastly exceed limits imposed by the EU. Fittingly, both the singing and dancing are devoid of highlights too.
Singing follows the template laid down by karaoke games past, and the microphone is fine, but the judgements are ridiculously generous. Your correspondent has the melodic capacity of a 56k modem, but Boogie was quite impressed. Boogie was wrong.
Dance moves are generated by swinging the Wii remote around in time with a metronomic beat coming from the remote’s speaker. This beat isn’t always in time with the dominant beat in the song, making the music effectively irrelevant; dancing around in time to the song will get you nowhere in most cases.
But when the beat does match, and the song maintains a constant tempo, it’s quite intuitive. Throwing the remote in different directions yields different moves, and keeping time builds a power meter that lets you attempt a more complex move for big points. You can even move your little guy around with the d-pad or nunchuk, for more movement-based fun.
The video editor is a reasonably nice feature, letting you apply effects and choose camera angles after a performance. But honestly, does anyone actually use that sort of thing? It just doesn’t seem worth it.
Maybe it is a game aimed at children, but ultimately it’s all too simple to provide much entertainment. Not even multiplayer dancing can improve the game’s essential mediocrity.