“Lips” karaoke game – Microsoft’s answer to Singstar? UPDATE

From the same source that leaked information about Xbox Live’s Mii-inspired avatar system, comes news that Nintendo isn’t the only competitor that Microsoft is looking to emulate.

Sony has had great success with their Singstar series of karaoke titles, selling over 12 million copies in the PAL region alone. Microsoft seemingly has some admiration for Sony’s successful attempts to appeal to mainstream gamers, and in an effort to break free from the Xbox 360’s hardcore-gamer demographic has apparently taken the Singstar idea and run with it.

“Lips” (probably not the final title) is a “music and singing game that includes 30 songs, 2 wireless interactive microphones, the ability to use and sing your own music or downloaded songs from an online service. Designed to have fun with friends, Lips scores you on your singing (pitch, rhythm, and tune) and overall performance.”

The wireless mics are also “interactive, with lights on the shaft of the microphone that pulse to the rhythm of your voice, and motion sensors that allow you to dance, move or swing to score points.”

Apparently you can also “take songs from a CD or your iPod, and upload them into the game. The game will reduce the vocals so you can sing along and be heard, and score on whether you’re in tune. Lyrics can also be added directly into the song to sing along.”

If this is true then it sounds extremely impressive. Microsoft have clearly decided to step up the game, the only stumbling point may be the cost of such a game. But with potentially access to the whole of your music collection it would certainly offer some value for money…

We’ll see if Microsoft confirms this at E3 in around four weeks time.

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UPDATE- More rumoured information has surfaced regarding the development of “Lips”. Supposedly the developers working on the title for Microsoft Game Studios are none other than iNiS, who are best known for creating the excellent Elite Beat Agents games on Nintendo DS.

Adding further weight to this rumour is that fact that last year, iNiS co-founder Keiichi Yano confirmed that the studio was definately working on an unnamed Xbox 360 game.

If iNiS can replicate the excellent rhythm-based action they produced on the DS, then Microsoft may have quite a hit on their hands…