Sunday, November 8, 2009

Dance Dance Revolution, Hottest Party 3 review

I was just thinking that I could really use a new version of Dance Dance Revolution for my Wii, as I was getting "A"s on most of the songs on Expert and was looking for a new challenge. Thanks to fooWidget on the Dragon Door forum, I was alerted to the newest version, Hottest Party 3. I got it the first day that it came out (October 28th).

Here is my review of the game, as it compares with Hottest Party 2.

Music Choices:
* The songs in Hottest Party 3 pull from a lot of different eras (70s, 80s, 90s, 2000s, rock, disco, punk, etc.) just like Hottest Party 2. Also, the original tracks (i.e., produced for Dance Dance Revolution) are also entertaining just like in Hottest Party 2. some of my favorite songs to DDR to (as opposed to "dance" to) are:
1) "Daftpunk Is Playing at My House"
2) "Pork And Beans"
3) "Shine"
5) "Taking It To The Sky"
6) "I'm Coming Out"/Diana Ross
7) "Hottest Party 2" and "Hottest Party" medley, which are mixes of songs in the previous Hottest Party versions.

Verdict: Push

* The development team at Konami has really made a big improvement in the graphics of this game. The visuals are a lot more three dimensional and lifelike. Also, the way the arrows move light up when you hit them really add to the excitement of the game. The movement of the dancers is also more realistic, and there is more customization of the dancers.

Verdict: Big Edge Hottest Party 3

* When I refer to choreography, I am referring to how well the games arrows match up with the song to produce a game that is fun to DDR to.

* On Expert Level, many of the songs simply don't have the density of arrows (i.e., foot rate) that Hottest Party 2 had. Also, for some of the songs too long to build up. Since I use this primarily for exercise, this means I have to be careful which songs I choose so I can keep the heart rate in the zone.

* It seemed to me that there was more emphasis on precise rather than just fast foot movement. It seemed that there was more instances where it mattered which foot you used for a given arrow, especially for freeze arrows. Also, HP3 did a better job of changing up the timing between arrows, making it a harder game in that regard.

* I do believe that Hottest Party 3 had a better matching up of the arrows to the song, meaning that it felt more like you were dancing to the song than just moving your feet. It also forced you to listen to the song.

Verdict: Slight Edge to Hottest Party 3

* When you first start playing DDR/Hottest Party 3, all of the songs are missing their gimmicks, or things that make the song more difficult than just moving arrows until you went through "Tournament Mode". Things like Double and Triple Stomps, sudden arrows, reducers/exploders, freezes make the game more interesting, and this was a big downfall of Hottest Party 3.
* Many of the songs were simply too easy and the foot rate was too slow.

* The DDR School was pretty cool way to get you used to all of the gimmicks.

* I don't really use hypermode, but they have added to it in HP3. HP3 also used the Wii Balance Board, which I don't have, but I think could be kind of cool and add another "functional movement" to the game.

* The foot recognition seems to be better in the new version. It seemed like it doesn't miss as many steps as the old one (i.e., there are less instances where I hit an arrow, but DDR does not recognize it).

Verdict: Slight Edge to Hottest Party 2

Overall I think that the game is very well done. The new songs are fun to dance too, and the choreography has been much improved. Also, the graphics and sound mastering are much better. Hottest Party 3 would have been a home run had the difficulty been increase on many of the songs, which will be disheartening to some of the Dance Dance Revolutionaries out there. The game is very fairly priced, at around $60, which also included and extra dance pad.

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