A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
The game takes it easy on players when it scores efforts to duplicate on-screen moves and keeps the energy high and fun to create a very positive atmosphere for the dance fitness exercise program.
Positive Role Models
The on-screen instructors are always smiling and while they don't actually give verbal encouragement, their expressions provide incentive to keep moving throughout the songs and the workout routines.
Ease of Play
Using Kinect, the menus are easy to navigate and the actual routines allow players to set up a drop-in screen that shows upcoming moves. The songs are keyed to the intensity level (low, medium, and high) and while the low intensity is more or less just stretching exercises (which are very nicely done), the high intensity songs can be a sweat-inducing workout -- if you can pull off all the moves. The Kinect sensor sees your moves and gives you a rating. Trying to pull off all the moves at the high level will accomplish the goal of exercising whether the moves are done perfectly or not.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Zumba Fitness Rush is a dance-centric title in which exercise is worked into dance routines. As such, there are dancers shaking their butts and upper bodies while performing the moves. The intent does not seem to be sexual in nature although the moves can be interpreted as such.
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The music is catchy, upbeat, and energetic -- and many of the songs are not in English. According to the ESRB, some of the song translations do contain mildly suggestive lyrics but if you don't understand the language and are only using the music to drive the beat of the routine, it really won't matter much. There are some suggestive lyrics in the English songs, though, such as Pitbull's "Pause," in which the lyrics "... if you say okay, we will play night and day, I'm such a dir-dir-dirty dog, my teeth will unsnap your bra" are heard.
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Products & Purchases
This game comes with a free seven-day pass to 24-Hour Fitness, presumably to take real Zumba classes. There is also a feature called Zumba World in the game, which will help players find Zumba classes in their areas of the country. And once the game is established, the publishers may have new songs available to download for a price.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Zumba Fitness Rush is a dance fitness game that requires the Kinect sensor to play. It is a high-energy game that keys in on exercise and burning calories as part of the dance programs, and because it has a high level of exercise, those that participate should understand when to take breaks to avoid overdoing it. Because the game uses Zumba dancing, there may be some moves that parents may think are too grown up for younger players; this is a game that features adult dancers and so the routines are geared for adults. If two players are dancing, make sure you have enough room.
Is It Any Good?
While the graphics may not be top-notch, Zumba Fitness Rush is certainly an exercise program that can cater to different skill or fitness levels. The low-intensity stretching routines target valid muscle groups and are excellent ways to warm up muscles. The high-intensity songs are challenging for Zumba novices and should not be approached lightly. The song list is a mixed bag, but most players will be more focused on trying to keep pace with the moves than listening to the songs. This title does provide a decent supplemental exercise routine and for those with 360 Kinect systems, it is worth a look.
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