If you would have told me two years ago that video game manufacturers could come up with a truly innovative game that does away with the hand-held controller, I would say video gaming would have lost its soul! You can?ft beat the feel of the buttons and the sensation you get when hit just the right combination when playing whichever game suits your style. However, Karaoke Revolution takes everything you expect in an entertaining and competitive game and turns it on its ear, and to top it off your controller is now attached to your head and your buttons are whatever signing talent you can muster while trying to take on Karaoke Revolution?fs 35+ songs.
The basic idea of the game is to sing each of the songs as accurately as possible, which may not seem that much more entertaining than a Tuesday night spent watching bacon grease congeal; but that would be where you are wrong my friend; Karaoke Revolution actually judges you according to how on time you can land the words as well as your accuracy of the note. Your voice is represented by a little triangle at the bottom of the screen and moves up and down on the musical staff depending on which note you are singing while the lyrics move from right to left showing you what needs to be sung and where the notes would fall.
Once you get the hang of hitting notes this game becomes truly engrossing experience. Karaoke Revolution?fs menus allow you to compete against seven of your friends (or enemies if they can?ft sing) and judge each other, or take it solo and try to set high scores based on your vocal talents. The games Showtime setting works much like someone?fs singing career would go. You start out by singing the easier of the songs at a party and progress to the Enormobowl where you attempt to belt out such challenging songs as ?eIt?fs the End of the World As We Know It?h and ?gCelebration?h.
To make things easier to get focused, your performance has a meter showing how well you?fve been able to get the digital crowd pumped with your voice. The better you sing, the more lights come on, the crowd gets into it, and your character performs. Even your microphone on the screen starts glowing and provides a nice visual feel for how a good performance should look. Beware of letting this meter drop all the way because then you suffer the worst fate, being booed off stage! However discouraging this may seem, it only entices the player to get back up and give it another go.
Although the graphics on the game won?ft be winning any awards, they definitely do their job well. The menus are colorful, straight forward, and provide plenty of information to get you started and enjoying this game.
When you start you will have a few characters and outfits to choose from and eventually unlock more. This is a great feature if you want to give the character on the screen a little bit of your personality. Your backing band plays the whole time you sing and different camera angles definitely help to give you a good view of everything going happening, off and on stage. The audience is a great distraction because they get cheering and clapping if you are doing well and the whole games seems to come alive during a great performance.
Karaoke Revolution is perfect for this game. Although not the exact songs, the studio artists do a great job making the songs sound like the real musicians did them. In fact, I didn?ft even notice they weren?ft the original artists until I found the making-of movie in the game. If you?fve sung along with these songs before, you will be perfectly comfortable picking up this game and laying down some terrific scores. The best part is, your vocals, the game vocals, music, microphone volume, and headset volume are adjustable so it is fairly easy to mix everything, even if you are not the loudest singer in the world.
Music aside, the background audio is upbeat and helps get you pumped up for your performances. An example is when you are not quite hitting all the notes you wanted and you finally get the hang of it, someone in the audience will usually shout some words of encouragement. All the menu background music is fun and works well with the game.
Karaoke Revolution is one of the first games to come along in a long time that truly made me want to play it every day. The games easy mode makes it so even the most tone deaf of us can at least rest easy knowing we didn?ft get booed off the stage and gave a decent show. While the expert mode tests your vocal talent to its limits and it seems you can only achieve greatness here with pitch perfect sounds and dead on timing. There is a huge range between these modes to challenge just about any player to come along and even if you are just getting by on easy, a few weeks of playing this game will help you learn what it takes to be a great singer.