Michael Jackson: The Experience
Michael Jackson: The Experience review for Nintendo Wii
- The most accurate Ubisoft dance game to date. Michael Jackson choreography
- Just 26 tracks? That's a pity
If you like these kinds of casual games, and have friends, then you'll need both this and Just Dance 2. If you're a fan of MJ, you'll need this. Otherwise, as good as Michael Jackson: The Experience is, Just Dance 2 is the more varied game – after all, MJ never tried his hand at Reggaeton.
Price$ 89.95 (AUD)
Michael Jackson was a better dancer than singer. Thankfully Ubisoft realised this, and Michael Jackson: The Experience is a dancing game, with not a whisper of karaoke to be found.
Built on the basic engine of Just Dance 2, Michael Jackson: The Experience feels like a better realised project. Perhaps because, rather than attempt the 40 or so very different genres of dance that Just Dance 2 throws up (Bollywood is nothing like Reggaeton, after all), MJ has fewer low moments.
There are only 26 tracks (27 if you were lucky enough to pick up the first-day-only special edition), but each and every one of them is tightly choreographed, with just the right mix of real MJ moves (yes, there is the moonwalk), and more accessible stuff for the more casual dancer.
Experienced dancers will have no trouble knocking off five-star ratings in the supposedly "inhuman" Thriller choreography, but for most it is going to be a real challenge. Thankfully (and a first for Ubisoft's casual dancing games) there are tutorials in this game that you can unlock and practice to help reach higher scores.
Like with Just Dance 2, Ubisoft has recruited a professional dancer to motion capture and provide the model for you to follow on-screen. In Just Dance 2, this was a huge step up for the series, as doing away with the CG models means the movements that you perform while holding a Wiimote are more accurately scored. It's hard enough to use random waggles to get high scores that you're better off getting into the spirit of things and just dancing.
Also like Just Dance 2, duets and group dancing has returned. Depending on the music track you'll be able to dance MJ's role, or for a slightly easier experience, you can instead pick the role of one of his backup dancers. In some tracks, such as "In the Closet", the partner work is much more than simply dancing side by side. Again, it's a nice addition to the basic formula that you can actually dance with people in this game.
It's just unfortunate that there are only 26 tracks and no shop for additional DLC. And, though the dance moves of Michael Jackson are timeless and hugely entertaining to pull off (or at least, try to), the fact that Just Dance 2 has a much longer track list, plus DLC, is going to make it a much more attractive purchase for many.
Really though, for a multiplayer experience, you're going to want to get both. Michael Jackson: The Experience is tighter, better choreographed, and if played in the spirit it was intended, a better dance experience than even Dance Central on Kinect.
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