Bust A Groove 2
To make a music game feel complete, the music has to be good (duh). The first game had memorable tunes like "The Natural Playboy," Kitty N's theme, and "Flyin' to Vour Soul." This has no standout tunes. I can't understand why Enix did not stick with dance music label Avex Trax for the music. This stuff is not nearly as danceable. The first game's character designs were great--cartoony yet realistic. This feels too plastic and too stylized to me. Returning characters don't have the same attitude they once did. The environments you dance in are all really well-done and have special effects that pop open as you dance. If you mastered the first game, you'll have no trouble breezing through this one quickly, opening all the secret characters along the way. The only way I can think of to make this game more difficult is to use one of the many third party dance pads to control the game with your feet. And there's no reason to play through it with every character since none of the characters have ending movies. Two-player battles quickly turn into who can do every step perfectly, as it's too easy to dodge attacks and not easy enough to "reflect them" (an addition for this sequel). Music games like PaRappa, Lammy and Konami's DDR games all get more difficult as you progress through the stages, but BA62 doesn't. This is a good one-night-stander but sadly isn't much improved from the first game.
The return of some great characters and the addition of some graphically impressive backgrounds can't help the fact that Bust A Groove 2's music leaves far too much to be desired. The original game's music was superb, but the tunes here fall completely flat, and it has nothing to do with the broken English lyrics. The music just ain't good. In fact, neither are the new characters. Shorty, Heat, Kitty N, et al had style; the new characters in BAG2 are simply boring. The dance engine itself, though sporting more options, seems limited as well. Unfortunately Bust A Groove 2 is useful as little more than a short diversion. Translation: rental.
I loved the first BAG, and the sequel certainly isn't bad, but I can't help feeling disappointed. In most ways it's identical to the first game--a few minor gameplay tweaks (the motions darkening as you press them is nice), and the graphics and animation are fine but not much of an improvement. So what it comes down to are the characters and the music. The new dancers are, how should I put it...lame. The music isn't bad--a wide variety of styles and a few catchy tunes--but nowhere near the overall quality of the first game. No tracks crawl into your head and stay there for weeks. Not a step forward in terms of quality, but worth it for big fans of the genre.
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Enix's return to the U.S. market includes a sequel to the hit dance game Bust-A-Groove. BaG2 will feature 18 characters, some of which are returning from the original, and 12 all-new songs. Gameplay enhancements include the ability to avoid or reflect opponents' attacks, an all-new scoring system and a more involved dance system that includes all four controller buttons. Bust-A-Groove 2 should hit this winter.
The hip-hop hoofers from Bust-A-Groove are back--in Japan, anyway--with a sequel to last years intriguing, addicting dance game. Bust-A-Groove 2 (known as Bust-A-Move 2 Dance Tengou Mix in Japan) will see the return of Heat, Strike, Kelly, Shorty, and others, sporting new outfits and groovin' on new stages. You can also expect to see a few characters you've never seen before. There's no word on a U.S. release yet, but there's always the import option for diehard fens.