The next Zumba title arrives, but unfortunately you’re not missing much. If you haven’t heard about this one, here’s the short summary:

Groove your way to rock-hard abs in this Zumba challenge that features the most rhythm styles of any dance or fitness game! Get a full-body workout that focuses on your core by dancing to 40 songs in a variety of Zumba styles, including Salsa, Bollywood, Reggaton, Cumbia, Brazilian, African, Disco, Jive, and more. Returning experts Beto, Gina Grant, Tanya Beardsley, and Kass Martin are joined by new celebrity instructors Loretta Bates and Nicholas Logrea. Hit the expanded tutorial section to learn the basics of six popular styles, have a friend join you for a shared workout, use Kinect to record and analyze your moves, and more.

Overview

Well, I figured because the last one, Zumba Fitness Rush, was pretty good, this one would be even better. That’s not the case, I feel it went backwards with this one. I explain why below.

The Menu

The menu is the normal hover and lock method again. Voice commands are added in again as well, so its nice that it works. Anyhow, the menu consists of Single Song, Full Class, Learn The Steps, Progress Tracker, Zumba World and Options. As usual, I’ll break each one down.

Single Song

This is your jump right in and play mode. You are presented with a list of songs, the majority you probably won’t know, there’s a couple hits in there though. As soon as you pick one, away you go. It’s pretty straight to the point. What is new in this one is that you now have a level/experience system. Each song you dance to, no matter what mode, you can increase your level. Unfortunately this does nothing for you in the game, except give you some “Did you know?” tips. You do get to take your picture if you want, I guess to see if you notice any changes between levels, but I went to level 6 within an hour…So not really, I’m not going to lose any weight in an hour.
The songs again are sorted alphabetically. What is so hard about adding some type of sorting option either by music type, intensity, etc. Anyhow, there are 40 songs in this one. I did go ahead and jot them down for you in case you are wondering:
  • Ain’t Nothing Wrong (Pop)
  • Alegria Pa Zumbar (Samba)
  • Bailamos (Pop Salsa)
  • Balans (Raggaeton)
  • Bem Vindos (Brazilian Funk)
  • Boogie Shoes (Disco)
  • Crazy Love (Samba Techno)
  • Cumbia Flow (Cumbia Raggaeton)
  • Dancing With Myself (Pop Samba)
  • Desert Groove (Bellydance)
  • Drop It Low (Hip-Hop)
  • Ella Me Copia (Bachata Flemenco)
  • For You (Axe)
  • Gati Bongo (African)
  • Ho Jayegi Balle Balle (Punjabi Bollywood)
  • Hola My Friend (Polynesian Rhythm)
  • Jamming (Raggae)
  • Jhoom (Bollywood)
  • Jump Jive And Wail (Swing)
  • Kazachok In Habana (Russian Folk)
  • La Bomba (Techno Cumbia)
  • Las Gatitas (Hip-Hop)
  • Lift Ya Leg Up (Soca Calypso)
  • Magalenha (Samba Capoeira)
  • Mirage (Bellydance)
  • Nyana (EDM)
  • Paris (Ooh La La) – (Rock Burlesque)
  • Quiebra (Quebradita)
  • Roll Wid Di Don (Stepping Raggaeton)
  • Shake It (Hip-Hop Raggaeton)
  • Suave (Kiss Me) – (Salsa)
  • Sugar Plum Fairy (Ballet)
  • Surf To The World (Surf Rock)
  • Sweet Girl (Techno Merengue)
  • Taki Country (Celtic Bluegrass)
  • The Trip (Arabian Raggaeton)
  • Vamos Pa’La Pista (Salsa)
  • Vem Vem (Brazilian Funk)
  • Zumba (Latin Pop)
As I said, there’s a few big hits in here, there’s also some that you probably never heard but will end up liking them. Then there are others that I had to ask myself, why? For example, what does the Sugar Plum Fairy have to do with Zumba? Sure, I give the guy credit, he brought Ballet into Zumba, but is it really making you lose weight faster than a normal Salsa/Merengue song? I doubt it, but you can tell me if I’m crazy, here’s a video of it, also my recording settings were reset and I didn’t catch it until I was done with everything, so these are only in 480P – sorry about that, anyway here you go:
There’s new venues in this one, but nothing really special. They consist of the following:
  • The Alberto
  • Elephant Palace
  • NYC SoundSystem
  • Lucky Fountains
  • Big Water
  • Luau Moon Party
  • Zumba Amphitheater
  • Royal Ballroom

I do prefer Rush’s venues much better. I actually prefer a lot of Rush compared to this one. You’ll notice in the video the graphics are nowhere as nice as they were in Rush. A lot of the routines are much more repetitive this time around, or just plain out boring. If you don’t believe me, here’s one of the boring ones for you, and no this song is not boring to me:

Full Class

This is just like the Rush classes, there’s a short class (about 20 minutes), a mid-length class (about 45 minutes), and a full-length class which are about 60 minutes in length. There are 15 different playlists per class. That’s all it is. You can also create a custom class which allows you to create 12 playlists of your own.

Learn The Steps

This version is somewhat similar to Rush’s tutorial, except it just doesn’t seem as good again. There’s a few steps it covers, but most are not even in the game, so I’m not sure what the point of it is. It consists of the following:

  • Salsa (Sidestep, Forward and Back, Travel, Backstep)
  • Samba (Basic Samba, Samba Lunge, Samba Travel, Box Step)
  • Bollywood (Bhangra, Cross-Stomp, Bhangra Bounce, Pony Step)
  • Raggaeton (Stomp, Knee Lift, Destroza, Bounce)
  • Cumbia (Two Step, Forward and Back, Sleepy Leg, Sugar Cane)
  • Merengue (March, Two Step, Six Count, Zumba Shuffle)

Again, I have no idea what these developers are thinking. There is a feedback system in here, while there isn’t one in the regular modes of the game. Why have it in the tutorials where you only need it to learn the moves, yet when I’m competing for a score or 5 stars or whatever, when I need to know what I’m doing wrong, I have no clue. It makes no sense! Here’s a video of it so you can compare it to Rush if you want:

Progress Tracker

Progress Tracker has a few things in here. Statistics keep track of your score, time, technique (how well you dance), calories and number of days that you have played. Achievements are also accessible in here. Goals allow you to view community goals, message between the community members and set your own goals. You can choose to set a number of calories, time or routines in X amount of days.

Bonus Content has 20 unlockable videos that you unlock by getting 5 stars on certain songs. They aren’t really special, they cover the instructors more than the game, although some show the game being developed with their moves. Here’s one from the ballet song:

There’s also an online leaderboards so you can kind of compete with your friends and the world. Lastly, there’s a progress option but as I mentioned, it just keeps track of each time you level up, nothing more about it.

Zumba World

I’m still waiting for the ability to participate in a real Zumba class from your living room, but again, it’s not here. All they have in here is the ability to download content, which there is none at the moment, view Zumba News from the Zumba website I’m assuming, and Find A Class so you can go Zumba with people in real life. I was amazed the search actually worked though, you can enter in your zip code, city, country etc. and do a search and it shows info about all the local classes going on around you.

Options

Last we have the options. They include Settings, Kinect Guide and the Credits. The settings allow adjustment for music and sound fx volume, however you can modify the visual cues. You can choose between Standard, Enhanced and Off. Unfortunately all Enhanced does is show more of the same cue cards. Being that most of the songs are repetitive routines, you really don’t need that many cue cards.

Conclusion

As I mentioned, this one went backwards. What Majesco should have done, instead of trying to make more money quickly on a lesser quality Zumba title, is released all of these songs as DLC, or added new routines to the other songs or whatever. This one is just hard to justify the price. It’s nothing new at all, the graphics are below par compared to Rush, the song choice is acceptable, and the detection system is more sloppy. The only recommendation I can make about this one is that a lot of the moves are simple, so if you have never “Zumba’d” before, give this one a whirl before you play the previous two.


This review is based on a retail copy of the Xbox 360 version of Zumba Fitness Core
Scoring policy: What do these game review scores actually mean?