SingStar - game review

Date: 2004-08-29 10:03:00
The review was based on the PS2 version.

My girlfriend comes home from work and, barely crossing the threshold, receives a clear command from me: Sit back and I'll sing for you, I said. Confused, however, she sits down politely, and her eyes are filled with increased, female curiosity. I turn on Singstar, grab the microphone (her eyes get bigger), choose George Michael's "Careless Whisper" and start to feel the first sounds (her eyes are already unnaturally large). She sits stupefied as I echo with the performer's voice. The song ends (she looks at me like an idiot), I fire up a replay, this time only with my vocal, and at that moment ... she goes to the bathroom in spasms of laughter and submits to this comedy for a few more minutes.

This is what Singstar is about. Funny, because it allows you to yell into the microphone to the beat of famous songs, as is the case at many karaoke events in Poland. Funny because our singing from the speakers will not always sound as good as we would like. It's all about fun and that's the attitude you need to approach the game with. Otherwise you can get complexes.

Singstar is karaoke with our singing rating system. In the set with the game you will find two solid microphones and a USB adapter connected to the console, into which we plug them. I do not agree with the opinions that the main game mode is for the lonely player Star Maker (about him in a moment). Singstar is primarily a game for at least two singing players, and if you find more of you at the mics, it's even better (although a maximum of two people can sing at a time). Among the modes for the failing masses, "Pass the Mic" is brilliant, in which two teams (in numbers from 1 to 4 players each) can fight each other in several rounds on different rules, determined by the console. There is also a mode that allows you to 1-on-1 duels or play in a duet (cooperation). A single player will also find something for himself - the loner is helped by the mentioned Star Maker, in which for 30 songs (the whole range in the game, but sometimes we will have to perform several of them several times) he will climb the career ladder, starting from musty, inferior clubs , ending up with a big concert as a celebrated star.

You already know the number of songs. The genre range is quite wide, although the authors focused mainly on pop. However, everyone will find something for themselves - from SugaBabes, Westlife through Jamelia (SuperStar), to classics like George Michael (heh!), Madonna or A-Ha (Taaaake onnnnn meeeeee!).

As in decent karaoke, the lyrics of the song scrolls down here at the bottom of the screen (in two lines, in advance, so there is no problem with following). The essence of the game is to hit the phrases shown in the center of the screen with the intonation of the voice - the perfect pattern is displayed and "stripes" are added to match the tone of our voice - if both coincide, our vocal performances can be considered successful. In addition, there are bonus vocal parts and after shooting well into them with our howl, we gain additional, quite a lot worth points. And yes, because consoles scrupulously evaluate our every performance, assigning us points and the final ranking.

This is the whole philosophy of this game. Extremely playable, offering a lot of positive vibrations and fun up to the armpits. Graphics play a symbolic role here - the menu is neat, very simplified, legible, even minimalistic. Real music videos play in the background, and if you have an Eye-Toy camera, your character will peek from the TV cathode ray tube accompanied by various graphic effects. The sound generated by the console is of good quality, also the one picked up by the microphones. The downside of the game may be its longevity. If you have someone to play with - it will be great. However, this is a party game, not a lone wolf title that Star Maker mode can overeat, and it is too short. You can cheat in the game - all you need to do is mutter to the right intonation and the points will be punctured in the same way as with articulated singing. But who would want to have fun there? It also seems to me that the microphones pick up the sound with a slight delay, and when we are sure that we hit the vocals perfectly, our voice may be slightly late on the replays, which will be picked up by a healthy ear after a while. Singstar has one more disadvantage for us, Polish players. Well, if someone does not know English well, it will be rather uncomfortable to sing for him, as long as he is not familiar with music like a finalist of a game show "what tune". Maybe we will see an edition with Polish hip-hop, or "Ich Troje" (olaboga), or Krzysiek Krawczyk (wouldn't it be nice to tear yourself at the party with a familiar "Parostatek")?