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May 8, 2008
SingStar Party Hits - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
29/5/2008SonySony Europe1-8$49.95 stand alone
$99.95 with mics

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Rihanna makes it in this compilation.
With Sony's SingStar franchise now surpassing sales of 12 million units around the globe (and the majorty of those being in Europe and Australia) it's not surprising to see a new title coming out soon. This time we have SingStar Party Hits, a game which supposedly focuses on, well, party tracks. So yet again, here we are with pretty much the same release as previous titles, albeit with the 30 new tracks. If you know what to expect in the game modes, just skip to the track list below. If you're one of the handful of people that have never experienced SingStar then keep reading...

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Will Amy live to see this release?!
I'm pretty fortunate in that many of my male friends don't mind some karaoke every now and then. I guess that a decade drinking and singing in Japanese karaoke bars (well, mainly drinking really) had us all used to the concept of grabbing a mic and more often then not making an ass of ourselves - it has always amazed us that so many karaoke bars use 'fake' versions of songs which are quite often slightly different to the originals in both tempo and worse, pitch. But then came SingStar - Sony's take on karaoke for the home using the power of the PS2 and, more importantly, original versions of the songs as well as original video clips (where available - which is almost always every song on the discs except for some older titles).

As with previous titles in the series SingStar Party Hits is split into two main game modes - Single Player and Party Play. Single player is pretty standard stuff. After selecting your song, and either a long or shortened version, it's your chance to do your best. If you want to practice without scoring you can enter the Freestyle Mode. The meat of this game, and the most fun, is found in the multi-player Party mode.

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Aussie ex-pat Peter Andre.
The Party mode includes several main modes. Pass the Mic is for up to 8-players and is a party styled game with a variety of challenges to be performed. This is tremendous fun and perfect for large groups. Next up is a battle mode for 2-players. In this mode both of you sing the same song and the person with the highest score is deemed the winner. A 2-player Duet Mode enables two players to each sing one vocal part of a duet, competing for the highest scores. Once again the game includes support for the Eye Toy so you can photograph yourself for your profile or, if the need arises, video yourself singing the song.

As with any release the most important thing is the track listing and SingStar Party Hits looks pretty solid with quite a few well known tracks. It looks like Sony have put in some efforts into localising this release too with many tracks from Australian artists such as Operator Please, Ricki-Lee and Shannon Noll included.

So what have we got? Well the disc includes the following thirty tracks:
Amy Winehouse Tears Dry On Their Own
Ash Girl From Mars
Blondie The Tide Is High
Blur Girls And Boys
David Bowie Lets Dance
Diana Ross I'm Coming Out
Elton John I'm Still Standing
Evermore Light Surrounding You
Girls Aloud Call The Shots
Toto Hold The Line
KT Tunstall Suddenly I See
Lou Bega Mambo #5
Madness House of Fun
Mel & Kim - Respectable
Mika Big Girls
Operator Please Get What You Want
Peter Andre Mysterious Girl
Plain White Ts Hey There Delilah
Pulp Disco 2000
Republica Ready To Go
Ricki-Lee Can't Touch This
Rihanna Umbrella
Shannon Noll Loud
Sugababes Red Dress
Texas Summer Son
The Klaxons It's Not Over Yet
The Veronicas Hook Me Up
Thirsty Merc 20 Good Reasons
Wham! Club Tropicana
Yazz The Only Way Is Up

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Plain White Ts sing Hey There Delilah.
As with any release there are some songs which we can't wait to sing such as Elton's 'I'm Still Standing', Yazz's 'The Only Way is Up' and for fun factor even Ricki-Lee 'Can't Touch This' (she's actually really great in person too as she performed where I worked a few months ago!). Having said that the tracklist seems to have a more 'female' slant to it - as with much of the series and while it may not be appropriate for this compilation I am dying to see some Guns N Roses, Eminem, INXS or even more Elvis appear in future.

While a lot of the focus has shifted to the Playstation 3, and even that version of SingStar the PS3 releases remain as important as ever with the gameplay remaining largely the same as the bigger cousin. Expect Singstar Party Hits to be release in late May 2008.