I’ve always fancied myself as a bit of an actor…..much in the same way that I fancied myself as a bit of a singer before a karaoke session proved that I’m actually quite shit. Well, Yoostar 2 has now laid another of my potential career moves to bed, by proving once and for all that I’m also completely talentless as an actor. Shame.
Working in essentially the exact same was as karaoke does for singing, Yoostar 2 provides players and budding actors around the world the chance to show of their talent (or lack thereof) by putting them into a collection of over 80 famous scenes from movies past and present.
With scenes as wide ranging as Superman, King Kong, Shaun of the Dead, 300 and Rocky to chose from, Yoostar 2 delivers a wide ranging and eclectic mix of movies and scenes with which to cut one’s teeth, while also allowing the player to choose famous scenes from a collection of famous TV shows ranging from Star Trek: The Next Generation to the brilliant Mad Men. On top of the 80 scenes available right out of the box, Blitz Games look to have extensive downloadable support planned for the title with plenty of additional scenes already available on Marketplace.
While this inevitably gives the game a potential longevity for budding thesps and those happy to dip their hand into their pockets for the somewhat steep DLC, the fact of the matter is most gamers will lose interest long before all 80 of the core scenes have been played out. While entertaining with a group of friends over a few bottles of beer, Yoostar 2 soon looses much of its admittedly huge initial appeal after just a few goes – like Karaoke, it’s good fun with a group of inebriated friends but feels sad and embarrassing when taken on in single play.
The other problem is that, even if you are the type of casual gamer to get sucked into this kind of experience, there’s not much in the way of actual ‘game’ to keep you busy. You are scored based on positioning and performance, but so much of that score feels arbitrary as to make it all but pointless. In fairness, the chance to ad-lib famous scenes and make up your own via the relatively robust collection of generic movie backgrounds available can be incredibly fun, but like so much of this experience, it only comes to life with friends and alcohol in tow.
The biggest problem with Yoostar 2 however, is its many technical foibles. For a game that is so dependent on ease of use and immediacy, there is often much in the way of your planned party based shenanigans. Beyond body parts going missing, bits of your head being cut off and having to duck down to get into certain scenes, based on the lighting in the room, Yoostar 2 will often see you clumsily forced onto the screen surrounded by an unpleasant haze of pixels. Games of this ilk are always going to be affected by the lighting in theroom, but the levels required for success in Yoostar 2 feel far too specific, proving a constant headache for those trying to create the perfect scene or even those just having a bit of a laugh. Some of the games technical deficiencies may well be forgiven when playing with a group of friends but the fact remains, Yoostar 2 is something of a technical mess and Kinect deserves better.
Despite its many faults, under the right circumstances, Yoostar 2 can be a huge amount of fun. The thing is, that fun, regardless of the conditions is relatively short lived. Blitz games have attempted to pad out the experience with extensive DLC, a collection of co-op scenes and online functionality that allows your scenes to be watched and ranked by the online community. But for all effort made, Yoostar 2 will deliver little more than fleeting entertainment for all but the most committed of wannabe actors and actresses. If ever a game was the very definition of ‘weekend rental’, Yoostar 2 is it.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Microsoft Xbox 360 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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