Just Dance

Game review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Just Dance Game Poster Image
Unresponsive controls make dance game difficult to play.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 10 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 26 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

The poor scoring methods unfortunately send the message that skill has no effect on winning or losing.

Ease of Play

The game seems to have the simplest rules of all -- simply mimic the dance moves you see on screen. But scoring seems entirely random and your ability to actually follow that one simple rule doesn't appear to affect your chances at success or failure.

Violence
Sex

Some mildly suggestive lyrics (phrases like "between the sheets"). There are also a couple of dance moves that could make some parents uncomfortable, including a pelvic thrust and a spanking motion. This is not the majority of the action.

Language

The phrase "pain in the a*s" appears in one lyric. Written lyrics can be turned off.

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this multiplayer dance party game could be the cause of frustration and tears for kids who are sensitive to negative feedback. A child who feels they are doing reasonably well at copying the choreography, can become very discouraged if they are then be told by the game that they missed 86% of the moves. Add to that a younger sibling who wildly swings the remote and manages to receive a higher score, and you've got yourself the makings of a meltdown.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 8, 8, 9, 12, and 15 year old Written byChrist-Lover April 8, 2012

You just have to know the songs.

Okay, for all of you complaining about how the language, first of all, WHY would you play a song that you don't know? And if you do know it, then why would... Continue reading
Parent of a 11 year old Written bypsalm23___ April 29, 2010

Great Reveiw

I am a Christian and i normally only listen to christian music but my daughter got it for her birthday and i was watching her play one day and a few bad stuff c... Continue reading
Kid, 9 years old September 5, 2010

Fun, but not for younger children

It's a really good game but, in some lyrics there are inappropriate language and some inappropriate dance movements.
Kid, 11 years old April 12, 2011

IDK what's wrong with it!

I don't get why everyone is freaking out about this game. Its scoring is perfectly legit. Plus, The a** thing? Seen all the songs. Nothing. Yeah, but only... Continue reading

What's it about?

Here's how JUST DANCE is supposed to work: While an onscreen dancer, clad in era-appropriate garb, dances to hit song from the last four decades, up to four players try to mirror the choreography with Wii remotes in their hands. The Wii remote allegedly senses how close the players are to perfectly mimicking the virtual dancer's moves, and grades them accordingly.

Is it any good?

So what went wrong with this game? Well, you can't fault the soundtrack -- Just Dance features a really nice selection of songs to groove to, including Irene Cara's "Fame," Katy Perry's "Hot and Cold," and Dee-lite's "Groove is in the Heart." The funky iPod-ad-style visuals are also pretty cool. And it definitely gives you a good workout. So why does this game potentially frustrate players? Because the scoring makes no sense whatsoever. In trying out Just Dance, players who appeared to pull of a pretty darn good imitation of the onscreen dancer got tons of X's in their score column, meaning they'd missed move after move. At the same time, a 3-year-old who grabbed a remote and jumped around wildly somehow managed to hit a series of "GREAT" moves. Dancing to these songs is fun, but if there's no sensible scoring being done, why play the game? You might be better off simply playing the music and just dancing.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how well or how poorly one does at a virtual skill in a video game has no bearing on how successful they would be at that same skill in real life. Do poor scores in a dance game mean your a bad dancer? No more than high scores at Guitar Hero mean your ready for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Game details

  • Platforms: Nintendo Wii
  • Price: $39.99
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: UbiSoft
  • Release date: November 27, 2009
  • Genre: Music & Dance
  • ESRB rating: E10+ for Lyrics, Mild Suggestive Themes

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