Country Dance 2 Wii Review

I’ve never been an excellent dancer. Something about the mental coordination with my hands and legs moving in rythmic motions has always ended with dire consequences (read: a broken lamp, cracked TV). Nevertheless, dancing games have always brought me tons of fun, no matter the genre of music. While I haven’t had much experience with country dancing in particular, I most certainly know how an intuitive and relatively fluid dancing game should play. Unfortunately, Country Dance 2 in no way lives up to its contemporaries.

After passing through the obligatory Wii Safety Protocol Screens, you’re taken to the Main Menu. A number of choices are available to get you into the country groove. Selections such as Freeze, Exercise, and Rehearsal offer unique styles of play, both alone and with a friend. Unfortunately, a number of poorly implemented features bring any fun experience you possibly could have to a rootin’ tootin’ halt.

Graphical elements of Country Dance 2 are average at best. Dancers are bland and indifferent, with multiple models being duplicated as both the lead and backup dancers with recolored hair. Colors were bland and dated. Pretty much the only visual aspect of Country Dance 2 that I can attest to is the dancing animations of the models. Authenticity and fluidity were quite apparent as the onscreen dancers air lassoed and twirled in impressive sync with the music. Aside from the nearly seamless dancing animations, I can’t really say anything else visually attracted me during my playthroughs. The duplicated dancer models and pale, tired colour palette speak worlds on how much work was put into the graphics.

Sound is undoubtedly (and unsurprisingly) the only true area where Country Dance 2 shines. Tracks such as Carrie Underwood’s All American Girl and Lady Antebellum’s Lookin’ For A Good Time are clear, catchy, and get you in the mood to dance the night away. But dancing isn’t what the game rewards. Instead, max points are given to those who flail their arms (specifically the one holding the Wiimote) wildly in front of the Sensor Bar.

Gameplay was undoubtedly the most disappointing aspect of this title. Even when performing a number of dance moves (including the simplest of gestures, such as synchronized clapping), the game would discount me and make score deductions due to not recognizing the move entirely. Frustrations were abundant as I attempted dance moves that the Wiimote would not possibly be able to recognize. How can an arm-oriented peripheral sense the validity of my very-vigorous kicks? Simply put, it can’t, and call me crazy but I don’t feel that I should be punished due to a lack of MotionPlus (or even Balance Board!) support.

Country Dance 2 is a barebones, lazy title. While the tracks offer some upbeat entertainment, it is blighted without doubt by the inattention to detail that is so transparent in nearly every aspect of the game. From the poor move recognition to the redundantly-blocky and dated character models, it is all too apparent that Country Dance 2 was rushed out of production for a quick cash grab. Thankfully, the developers created a ‘Credits’ section in the menu. Now I can find exactly who spearheaded the production of this title and ask them:

“What were you thinking?”

6/10

by

Version tested: Wii

Developer: High Voltage Software

Publisher: GameMill Entertainment

Genre: Dance