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Platform

Playstation 2

 

Genre

Music

 

Publisher

SCEA

 

Developer

SCE Studios London

 

ESRB

T (Teen)

 

Released

December 2, 2008

 

 

- It has 20 great ABBA songs

- Refined presentation with quality video

- If you’re an ABBA fan, this is ABBA overload

 

 

- You might only recognize 5 of those 20 great ABBA songs

- It’s pretty much the same SingStar you already know

- Possibly not a lot of replay value

 

 

Review: Technic Beat (PS2)

Review: Guitar Hero: World Tour (360)

Review: Rock Band (360)

 

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SingStar: ABBA

Score: 6.0 / 10

 

singstar abba          singstar abba

 

I thought about writing the first part of this review entirely in ABBA lyrics, but then I realized the problem with that which is also the problem with this game. If you’re an ABBA fan, you’ll get it. If you’re barely an ABBA fan or not, you just won’t get it.

To be fair, I should step back and talk about the game for people that have not been exposed to the SingStar franchise. Essentially, SingStar is like karaoke on steroids. The game presents you with a variety of songs which you can then sing along with in a variety of modes.

First you might try just singing solo to get the hang of it. The game offers a couple of difficulty levels. When the music starts, you’ll see a video in the background (in

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this case, it is original video footage of ABBA cleaned up very nicely, considering its age). You will then see the lyrics appearing on the screen along with color bars. The bars appear relative to one another based upon the pitch you need to sing in order to “hit the notes”. The more you sing to match the pitch of the notes, the higher your score. The normal mode is quite a bit easier on you, allowing even the casual singer a chance to get a decent

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score. Go into the harder difficulty level and you’re in for a bit of a challenge.

In addition to the single player mode the game features a couple of multi-player options which is really where this entire franchise shines. You can play two player either against each other or in a co-operative duet mode. There’s also the party “pass the mic” mode that allows up to eight people to participate.

The bottom line with this game is that it’s really not any different from the other Singstar titles. If you like those, and you know the music, you’re all set. I thought I was pretty familiar with ABBA songs and I only really recognized six of the twenty included songs. The problem with this is that if nobody recognizes the songs at a party, it really detracts from the enjoyment of the game overall. If you’ve got yourself a group of hardcore ABBA fans then you are probably going to be fine.

If you consider yourself (as I do) only a casual ABBA fan, you will discover that there are a lot more words to those songs you thought you knew. If I do dare sing their songs out loud, apparently I’ve been missing half the words. This game is a real eye opener into how many words are packed into some of these songs.

In short, the game delivers what I would have expected. It’s an average title at best, appealing to the biggest ABBA fans. If this is you, run out there and pick this up. If you’re not sure, a rental may be in order first. Because, “if you change your mind”, this game will be ready and will for your to “Take a Chance” on it.

 

- Syd Bolton

(March 21, 2009)

 


Syd Bolton surrounds himself in classic games at the Personal Computer Museum (www.pcmuseum.ca) in Brantford, Ontario, Canada.

 

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