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Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 4 Preview for Xbox
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Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 4 

Preview for Xbox

- William Usher, " Cyguration ", Senior Staff Writer
Thursday, June 22, 2006 

Review Preview

Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 4
Konami Corporation
September 30, 2006

Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 4 Screenshot Gallery

Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 4 Screenshot Gallery

Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 4 Screenshot Gallery

Konami is extending its dancing franchise to new heights with its latest Dance Dance game. The series has almost sold ten million units world-wide, and those numbers seem to keep growing. The last iteration (Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 3) was a worthy addition to the bunch, and had a ton of features and options to keep the replayability and fun high. DDRU4 is bringing even more features, more music and more options than ever before--including an all new tutorial to help dancers get started.

Apparently, gamers who were new to the Dance Dance games found themselves having a tough time getting into the groove, learning the rhythm So Konami has extended two modes specifically for newbies which will (hopefully) help them adjust to the learning curve of DDRU4 without stumbling, fumbling and falling over their own feet. The tutorial-friendly “How to Play” will give players an in-depth beginners look at starting off easy and getting the very basic concept of dancing down before moving onto anything advanced. The mode is quite visual and even has an image of a character on the dancemat to help beginners learn the footing and positions for many of the dance-steps. So even amateur gamers who have little experience in gaming—but wanted to use Dance Dance as a workout tool—can learn how to play. Konami has really gone out of their way to make things more user-friendly this time; they even included a “Trial Mode” to help the newbsters practice their new skills some more before moving off to the more advanced modes. If that isn’t enough, Konami has added an even easier difficulty setting. This is to make sure that gamers of all ages (and skill levels) can participate in the rest of the game modes with ease.

Veterans and newcomers alike can also equally enjoy a host of new features, as well as some old favorites; included are a wide-range of new features which are sure to appeal to any Dance Dance fan. The most appealing of the new features is the custom option of putting together background videos and new dance steps to go along with them. The previous Dance Dance (DDRU3) featured the custom dance-step editor for veterans, and that very feature makes a welcomed return in Dance Dance Ultramix 4.

As mentioned, there is the inclusion of a video editor. This is exactly what veterans of the series might think it is; players can edit background videos. Despite the already colorful and varied videos, players can now put together their own kaleidoscope of near-seizure-inducing flashes, blips, faders, spins and sparkly things—entirely on beat with a specified song. If the video editor is anything like the step-editor, players shouldn’t have any problems putting together a fully featured edited video for whatever song(s) they please.

There’s also an entirely new compilation of popular, favorite and remixed tunes, especially made for the Xbox. The total list of dance-worthy music comes to a whopping 65 new songs. Of course, using Xbox Live gamers can conveniently log on and download up to 75 additional songs from the three previous Dance Dance Ultramix games. Like the included tracks, players can still edit and add dance steps and custom video to the downloaded song packs. Other popular modes also make a hearty return in Ultramix 4, such as the weight-shedding "Workout Mode" and its calorie counting options to make sure players keep the pounds down when not slouching on the couch. A revamped and improved Attack mode has been added as well, giving players a new way to battle each other on the same system, or via on-line. The Attack mode appears to have more ways to counter and send attacks back to opponents this time around, which is always good.

The Xbox exclusive “Quest Mode” (along with a couple of other oldies-but-goodies) will also see some improved and chiseled qualities that gamers will surely enjoy. The original “Quest Mode” allowed up to four-players—simultaneously on one console—to venture across a map of the United States in dance competitions. Players would face off with one another in order to try to become the number one dancer in the country. There were even options to unlock other characters by collecting puzzle pieces and adding new tunes to the playlist via buying them from vendors randomly scattered throughout the map. Players could even purchase a number of backup dancers to help achieve more score and recognition.

Other modes included in DDRU4 are the party modes which range from “Bomb Mode” and “Sync Mode” to the “Freeplay Mode,” “Jukebox” and “Workout Mode.” Many more features will be available as well, and fans of the series will be sure to have a blast with all of the new content and characters. And for those looking to keep the competition fresh, the extended Live features will be sure to help with that. With leaderboards and rankings, the ability to upload Edited content, download edited content, and challenge other players, this game probably won’t be collecting dust on any gamer’s shelf. Dance Dance fans can look for Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 4 to hit shelves on September 30, 2006 on the Xbox.

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