Monday, November 8, 2010

Kidz Bop Dance Party gets the whole family going

I recently had the opportunity to review Kidz Bop Dance Party for the Wii, and let me tell you, it will really get your kids moving!

And I say this with complete confidence, because it even had ME dancing, and that's a big deal.

Now, when I played this video game, I played it just the way your kids would--which means, of course, not bothering to read the directions or anything and just diving right in--and I was hooked from the beginning.

The dance beats are fast and catchy. All the music, like the Kidz Bop songs on their CDs, is appropriate for children, with family-friendly lyrics sung by kids (the game is geared towards kids ages 5-12 years old). I can imagine most kids will start singing along as they dance, too.

The game is easy to get going: you just choose a song and follow along. All you need is the Wii controller, no dance mat is required. The controls are easy, too, because the dancing avatar on your screen demonstrates them for you in time to the music, so you are just dancing right along with her.

I especially liked the way you can't just sit on the couch and move your wrist around to "dance" in this game.  I know that when you play the sports games, you can just flick your wrist to hit the virtual tennis ball or bowl. But with Kidz Bop, you need to actually turn your entire body around, wave your arms over your head, circle them, etc., to get credit for performing the moves, so you really can't just sit still and mimic the hand motions.

I kept going, dancing about a half an hour, because I wanted to finish all the "bronze" level songs and level up. I can definitely see kids being motivated by the ranking system, wanting to reach silver and gold levels. Once you have mastered all the songs in a level, you take a final test combining all the move in one dance to level up.

Your kids can earn rewards, like new dancing clothes, for their avatar when they level up. The higher the scores they earn, the more stuff they can get for their avatar, so they'll want to try each song again and again. To me, the repeat playability of the game makes it a good value for your money, as well as just the positive experience of getting your kids up off of the couch and moving.

And, as I said, *I* even enjoyed dancing to the music, and wanted to keep going! And what's nice about Kidz Bop is that two players can play at once, so this game would be great for an ACTUAL dance party. Set up some mood lighting, like a disco ball, serve some snacks, turn the speakers up and let the kids go crazy!

Kids Bop Dance Party lets your kids:

  • Dance to 24 contemporary songs including "Paparazzi" and "Party in the USA," performed by kids for kids
  • Get swept away in a variety of pop hits and timeless pop anthems with kid-friendly lyrics
  • Enjoy five gameplay modes, including free play, challenge, dance off, shop and dress up
  • Dance by yourself or team up with a friend to dance together or compete for the top score
  • Receive encouragement to succeed without penalty for errors or missteps

Viv's take:  Kidz Bop will get your kids, and the rest of the family, up off the couch and exercising, with fun dance moves that earn them achievements and bonus items for their avatars. Highly recommended!

I received a complimentary copy of Kidz Bop Dance Party pack to facilitate this Dance Party review.

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