Published by: Electronic Arts
Developed by: Electronic Arts
Release Date: Out Now
Boogie for the Nintendo DS has undergone a few major changes in its transition from the original game that was released for the Wii. Boogie on the DS is all about the dancing and there is no singing (or blowing into the microphone) to be done. For the Wii version you had to wiggle the microphone around in order to dance. The PlayStation 2 version required you to press buttons and move the analogue sticks. The Nintendo DS version takes a slightly different route and requires you to get on down with the stylus.
The modes on offer in the DS version of Boogie are Dance Now, Career and Multiplayer. Dance Now lets you jump into a quick dance or practice as well as offering some mini-games. Career allows you to play through the stories of the five characters in the game: Julius, Bubba, Lea, Jet and Kato. Multiplayer supports up to four players if each player owns a copy of the game and two players using the single-card download play method. When you first play the game you have to play through the basic tutorial. You can play through this again and the other two tutorials (which go on to explain the various game modes and combos etc.) by selecting Tutorial from the main menu.
Dancing is everything in Boogie for the DS then and it's rather different from what you might have experienced in other rhythm games. To perform the dance moves you simply have to touch the screen and slide it in one of several different directions. You can also perform a jump by simply tapping your character. You can also use the directional pad to move your character around the dance floor. Of course you have to perform your dance moves to a beat. On either side of the touch screen is a Beat Meter that constantly fills and empties. The idea is to perform your move as the meter fills so that it's in time with the beat. There are three main dance modes. Freestyle allows you to do what you want. Copycat gives you blocks of four moves that must be replicated in the exact order. Choreography is a dance mode where you have to perform the moves in time.
There are a few key differences in the DS version. The game comes with a pair of 3D glasses and before you take part in a dance you have the option of switching to a kind of 3D appearance. It adds nothing to the game but I daresay some will appreciate the novelty value of it. During a dance you'll have creatures known as Party Freaks appear on the top screen. The more Party Freaks that are present, the better you are doing. Again it adds nothing to the game except to provide a quick visual feedback of how well you are dancing. During a dance you will have an interlude where you'll play a mini-game. The mini-games aren't really up to much and break up the flow of the dancing. The mini-games can be played separately too.
There are no problems with the presentation of the game. The graphics are actually quite good and have retained the same visual style as the Wii version. All of the tutorial information is text only which means deaf gamers will have no problems with the game. All of the stories you can play in the Career mode are all told exclusively in text. Of course it's not a game we would suggest for deaf gamers (hence the reason for not providing a DGC rating for the game) as part of the game's appeal is the music that's on offer. None of the 20 or so tracks have their lyrics subtitled which isn't much of a surprise given the space limitations on the DS screens. It certainly wouldn't add anything to the experience anyway.
Boogie on the Wii and PlayStation 2 was disappointing. The bulk of the disappointment was that the game was ridiculously easy. Don't get me wrong, the game could have been much better but the ease with which you could complete your objectives took all the fun out of the game. The DS version is better in this respect and is capable of providing a challenge. That said, you still get the feeling that the game could be better.