Pump It Up: Exceed

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Wow, that was crazy. There is so much going on: music pumping, feet moving and arrows flashing across the screen, all keeping you on your toes. You really have to be able to move your feet fast to keep up with this game. What am I talking about? Well I�ve got another dance game here for you: Pump it up Exceed.

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Gamerr
Gamer

While other dance games arbitrarily assign positions to a dancer’s feet, Pump It Up

features choreographed steps for each song and a five button mat that lets the step designers reward players for not just where they put their feet, but how the feet got there. The game features about 100 songs, including new music for the console version from cutting edge artists such as Grammy nominees Crystal Method and Steriogram, as well as Elvis vs. Junkie XL, Earth, Wind and Fire; and Sugarhill Gang. Music familiar to fans of the arcade include top K-POP (Korean pop) acts like Sechs Kies, Honey Family, Clon and Novasonic, and songs like Beethoven Virus and Pump Me Amadeus by BanYa, the Pump It Up original band.

Like all dancing games, you will be able to unlock songs to increase the number of tracks available to you beyond those playable when you first start playing the game. Plus, with Xbox Live you will be able to download new songs as they become available.

The console version of Pump It Up: Exceed is based on the arcade game Pump It Up: Exceed but, in addition to the new music features a wealth of exclusive features including three entirely original modes: Home, Sudden Death, and Survival as well as a practice and tutorial mode. Like the arcade version, the home version will also allow players to log their high scores on a worldwide score board.

You can customize your challenge level by choosing from the five difficulty levels built into the title.

The game offers one player, one mat mode, two players two mat mode, and one player two mat mode.

If the variation of difficulty settings and mat options was not enough the game also offers these things called modifiers that let you to customize your gameplay experience.

Here are some of the types of modifiers you can active and discover in the game.

  • Velocity: Arrow speed will increase by 2, 3, 4 or 8 times.
  • Mirror: Arrows are displayed backwards. It will be useful, if you are performing with your back to the screen for an audience.
  • Vanish: Arrows will disappear halfway up the screen. If you have Xbox Live you will also be able to take advantage of the following features.
  • Internet Rankings: Do well in the game and you get a 16-digit code so you can register the score online and compete with players all over the world.
  • Step Editor: The editor will let you edit songs in the game or create steps of songs you own. It will be free to download.
  • New Songs: Once you download songs, you will be able to play them just like other songs in the game in Custom Mode. Songs will not be free to download.

Assuming I am talking to someone who is accustomed to western music, as this is a website run in the United States, you will most likely find that there are few songs that you will recognize. It�s not necessarily a bad thing to try out new songs, but there is something great about dancing to tons of songs you know and every once in awhile throwing in a new title for fun. Many of the songs are very Eastern in style and form, which defiantly leads me to believe that this game is aimed more at the Asian market than at the US or EU market.

Fun

My test on if a game is fun or not, will I play it after the review is done.

No, I will not.

I have two Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) games that I can play instead, and that use the standard mat, both with more songs that I know and love.

Why would I waste my time with this title?

I had problems with the controls (I�ll get to that in a sec) and the songs that I knew was very limited.

I am done with this game for good; it will be stored at the back of my closet, never to see the light of day again.

Control

I have been involved in music for a large part of my life, and either the dance pad I had was broken (was not able to test with another dance pad since the pad is unique and could not try my DDR pad) or the game timing is off. Every time I would step on the beat it would register it as a miss, I would have to hit the pad a half beat BEFORE the beat in order for it to register as a proper step, this drove me INSANE.

Now lets talk about the �unique� dance pad for this game.

This means two things, those of you that already have dance pads for other games are out of luck, and you�ll have to buy the dance pad for this game, as it is different.

Then there is the buttons themselves, sometimes during the game you would have to hit three buttons at once.

Which means you either have to have the front part of your foot on one button and the back of your foot on the other button, or start using your hands as well.

How are you expected to pull off either without taking your eyes off the screen to look at the pad, and by the time you look back up you�ve missed a bunch of steps, throwing you completely off your game.

The only thing I can really give them credit for is for breaking from the mold of DDR and trying out a new control pad, it might have worked if they hadn�t required you to hit three buttons at the same time.

Well, if you like the game (if you do, please tell me on the forum why, cause I would like to know what it is about the game you liked), then there is always replay value from the download from Xbox Live, the multiple difficulty levels and the un-lockable songs and modifiers. Then there is the editor, letting you tweak your own steps. If you enjoy this game, then there is a lot of replay value behind this title. 8

Music/Sound

It�s a dance game, so of course it�s got to have some good tunes. You may not recognize all the tracks, but most of them are pretty good. My biggest complaint seemed to be the in large difference in the songs, they went from slow to fast, with little in the middle, giving you no chance to practice your skills and slowly work up to the hard stuff. You must confront it head on, which can become intimidating and frustrating. If you like Korean Pop then you might enjoy this game more than I did, I was really hoping for more stuff like Crystal Method. 7

Overall

Walk right past this title and pick up the latest version of Dance Dance Revolution, for whatever system you like. I really don�t know what else to say beyond what I have already stated. It should be fairly clear that I am not a fan of this title.

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