Review by neothe0ne

"The new Craze.. or is it?"

Pros:
Features a Dance Pad for GC!
First of the genre for GC

Cons:
Nowhere near the difficulty of DDR
Song selection is aimed at "plastic" girls
How will we get more songs for the game?
No unlockables
Dance pad is virtually useless for any other game

Mad Catz Groovz Dance Craze (what a long title) took the world by surprise.. well, not yet. Sooner or later, when people start seeing official-Nintendo-licensed dance pads being made by Mad Catz, they'll realize that Mad Catz also made a game for them. The very first video game ever made by them. Good or bad? We shall see...

The graphics in the game.. well, it's a dance game, remember? The graphics look like a mutated Windows Media Player visualization with notes going across it and a weird girl outline in the middle. It's "dancing" and explains why this game is so unique. It even looks disgusting compared to other dance games. The notes are not nearly as clear or as well laid out as in DDR, though. This leads to another problem: the gameplay. Unlike other dance games, there are 8 directions to step in instead of 4. This adds to the difficulty, but not in the right way. It's harder to distinguish the notes than in other dance games, and once again it's not laid out very well. The dance pad is pretty good, unless you're stepping on it with shoes or something. It's a lot more slippery than it should be, but that isn't a huge problem. You'll rarely have to work to do well in this game, as you mostly just tap with your foot and rarely have multiple directions to step in at once. The dance moves also don't fit well with the songs, and that's our next topic for dissect--I mean, discussion.

Most of the music is pop, most not even from the radio, not enough techno, no touch on rap and real rock (not that pop crap), so many people will hate the music. In other words, it's the kind of music only "the plastics" could like. The only song I could recognize from the radio was Jewel - Intuition, and that's extremely old, more adult alternative styled, and not that great of a song. The game also features a song by Jessica Simpson that I've never heard, and I didn't even recognize the artists of the other songs. Maybe that's because they're from the 80s and Mat Catz is just trying to convince parents to let their little kids waste money on this. My big complaint here is that we don't have an online service on the GameCube to get updates. How will more songs be available on this game? (Because I will most certainly NOT buy an expansion to this game...) Because, in case somebody forgot to tell Mad Catz, a dancing game is made because the MUSIC is good. Nobody's going to care about gameplay if they can't dance to catchy songs, and no one wants to dance to eight minute songs like those featured here.

Now, the bottom line: this game is basically a ripoff of DDR made easy, then crapped up more than the average port to another console. All my friends who have it used to refer to it as the Easy DDR. Now, they refer to it as Mad Crapz Goozy Dancing Craze, and taking it literally, it's kind of true. Everything was done sloppily, was obviously rushed and not concentrated on, and ends up being just that... crap. I'm sure Mad Catz knew that making this game would attract the attention of the DDR fans who own GameCubes and have been neglected by Konami, and I'm afraid it's not going to benefit Mad Catz. (After all, Dance Dance Revolution with Mario was announced not too long after this game was released.) The hard difficulty level is way easier than DDR's, and DDR also has a wider selection of music to tune in to. There's a Workout mode to burn calories in this game, but I didn't notice anything different other than the calorie counter which probably isn't even accurate. (How many calories do you spend tapping your foot or tapping with your finger?) There is a competitive mode to play with your friends, which is nice, but that turned boring really fast, and not because we don't like dance games.

There really isn't all that much to expand upon for this dance game. I mean, as far as I can tell from the press releases, they took a full two weeks to develop the game and dance pad. Two whole weeks. I wonder whether or not this game was just a scam so they could make Nintendo-licensed dance pads... oh wait, it was. And again, the dance pad is virtually useless. The directions on the pad are read as the D-pad, not the analog stick, so that makes trying to move impossible in most games. Now, it's also missing trigger buttons, so that makes it useless for shooting while stationary, too. Just what was the purpose of this dance pad?

The really special thing about it is that.. it has nothing special. The ONLY reason you should get this game is if you have no access to a PS2 or XBOX (with DDR, of course) and if you like dancing. In my opinion, MC Groovz Dance Craze isn't worth any money. I could only give it a five because it has 2-player multiplayer (however bad) and has a dance pad for GameCube. Now, with the announcement of Dance Dance Revolution with Mario, this game barely deserves a 3. Mad Catz needs to stick to developing accessories (and their controllers suck too, all of my MC controllers went bad at once, and they're pretty new).


Reviewer's Score: 3/10 | Originally Posted: 12/01/04, Updated 01/19/05


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