Dance Dance Revolution Universe 2 Reviews

  • JoeCool7835JoeCool7835371,047
    13 May 2011
    3 2 0
    Time to continue my coverage of Dance Dance Revolution on the Xbox 360. I was initially not interested in looking at Dance Dance Revolution Universe 2, believing that it would just be a thinly veiled rehash of the first Universe with a new tracklist. Konami had already done that with Karaoke Revolution American Idol Encore 2, after all. Even the Achievement list didn't instill much confidence. The list is ALMOST EXACTLY THE SAME as the first! However, I found a copy for just $4 and figured What the hell.

    Booting up the disc gave me trepidation right off the bat. The main menu looked exactly the same as the first, right down to starting with the Basic menu which featured only the tutorials. The exact same modes from the first are present and accounted for. The same four arrows are there. The difficulty still spiked too sharply going from "Beginner" to "Difficult" (the closest the game has to Normal). The only change in the graphics department is a font change. I was ready to judge that even the meager $4 I spent seemed like a waste.

    Fortunately, there are improvements in this second act that aren't apparent at first glance. First, the timing window has been widened a little, making the game easier to jump into for beginners. The tracks in this one are more fun. Sure, there are the techno tracks from Europe and Japan like before; however, there are also more recognizable performers from America that the last one, like OutKast, Kool and the Gang, and the Bangles.

    However, the biggest improvements were in the Quest Mode. The Quest Mode is still the only way to unlock new tracks, and some of the challenges are still too cutthroat for the general audience. However, there are some concessions for weaker players, like challenges where points are cumulative among multiple songs. In the first Universe, the currency you won was just for unlocking songs and gaining access to harder venues. This time, the Quest Mode provides a Store. Your in-game currency can buy new background videos, ownership of songs (making them more rewarding in the Quest), and, best of all, new outfits for your customizable dancer! I can't believe it took Konami this long to include a character creator! Granted, customization options are limited, but I'm glad it's there, all the same.

    The first Dance Dance Revolution Universe was a decent game in which it was WAY too difficult to make progress. The second made some steps in the right direction. The improvements weren't enough to give it more than the three-star rating of its predecessor, but it's still better than the first and fun for those without the money or room for Kinect. If you have Kinect, stick to Dance Central.

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