Just when you think there aren’t enough karaoke games on the market, here comes another one with a bunch of the same songs and the same formula – and yet, even taking that into consideration, it still ends up being an immense amount of fun. Live out the TV Talent Show dream with ‘The Voice’, one of the more entertaining and attention-holding singing games I’ve seen for a long while. While nothing will ever quite compare with SingStar, aka. the champion of the singing party game genre, The Voice brings that extra element that grabbed my attention and will certainly get players coming back for more. Whether with friends or on your own, this game is a lot of fun, there’s no denying it.
For those of you who have been living under a rock, ‘The Voice’ is a TV Talent Show for singers, much like The X Factor or Britain’s Got Talent, except the twist is that the contestants audition to the judges who have their backs turned. The aim is to sing your way into their hearts and make them turn around with their “I WANT YOU” buttons, rather than them judging by appearance. They then go through the “battle” stage, singing against their fellow competitors like a dance battle but with songs then the classic of every TV talent show: the live shows. A simple premise that’s blown up into an international talent show, with versions in the UK, USA, Holland and countries all around the world – and now with its very own video game.
The game is simple and there’s three different ways to play: Party Mode where you can choose which round of the “show” you want to participate it: the ‘blind auditions’, the ‘battles’ or the live shows. The Blind Auditions is great if you’re playing alone or want to sing on your own, the battles are two player. You essentially sing a duet with your friend but try to sing better in order to score higher than the live shows are either or – basically the same thing as the last two options, but with a different name. Or if you’re not into choosing, you have the ability to go through the entire “show” process in the next game mode: “The Show”. You choose a song to audition with and try and get as many “judges” to turn around as possible to work through the rest of the game (this is my personal favourite)
The game is undeniably a lot of fun. It brings a competitive twist to a genre that was previously not really available with any other game. Sure, there are modes on games like SingStar that bring out the competition at a party, but players have a certain need to want to be the best with this. Probably because of the ‘competition tv show’ you’re participating in. Unlike other karaoke games where you select a song in the menu, see how well you sung and pick a new one, there’s the want to ‘get chosen’ for the next round and try to win. Video games are essentially, all about completing and winning and that is not something you see very often in many karaoke games. It’s fresh and it’s fun.
One thing that is particularly fun about “The Show” game mode is that it selects the songs for you, making it all the more challenging particularly if the only two you get to choose from are songs you don’t know. Players choose their own song out of 30, all a mix of a decent amount of genres for their “audition” then when they choose their ‘mentor’ (eg. the genre they prefer), the game automatically selects two songs of that genre for you to sing in the battle rounds. It’s a lot of fun and something just that little bit different that you don’t see in many other karaoke games.
The graphics are good. At the end of the day, you do spend more time than not watching music videos, so there’s not much particularly fresh there. You’ve got the classic pitch bar that helps you through the songs, the lyrics on-screen like a normal karaoke set up and a score in the corner. It’s a formula that has worked for years with the genre and continues to work, so there is no point in a developer trying to change that – if anyone did then it would more than likely be a mistake, so it’s good that everything familiar is still in place. The colours, the animations and the graphics themselves on the menus are reminiscent of the TV show, which is all you could really ask for, since it would be particularly weird if it didn’t match the brand.
What is there to say about audio and soundtrack in a karaoke game? Not much. You spend the majority of the game listening to the songs that you’ve personally selected, so there’s nothing to really praise on the developers part. The very beginning of the game and the main menu have original music, although as far as I’m aware that’s taken from the television show itself, so once again – nothing particularly special. Although, what is worth praising is the broad amount of genres packed into the 30 songs that come with the game. Whether you’re a rock fan, a pop fan, an indie fan or something in between, there is probably at least three songs on the game that you’ll at least recognise and that’s something worth pointing out as other singing games sometimes just don’t take on board everyone’s choices. Although, while I’d personally like a musical theatre option somewhere on one of these games, just as I know many people would like a very specific genre to play with, that may be a case of having to stick with the SingStar game and song store.
So, overall is it worth playing? Well, if you like singing and you like something a little bit different to play at a party or even on your own, then pick on The Voice. It’s fun, it’s challenging and it brings out that competitive side of you even when you’re playing alone. As mentioned, it’s a lot of fun and I personally fell in love with it.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Sony Playstation 4 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to email@example.com.
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