SingStar Abba - PS3 Review
Note: As much of this release (such as the SingStore and certain game modes) is identical to that of other PS3 SingStar titles sections of this review have been recycled.
With three Singstar releases already under their belt this latest title from Sony is unique for one big reason - it no longer focuses on different artists and bands, but rather a single group - Abba. The Swedish mega-group is featured in this latest PS3 release and it really a stunning compilation with all their biggest hits present. As with previous games in the series on PS3 there is plenty of online connectivity too so when you get tired of Abba, you can download hundreds more songs for a couple of dollars each. Anyway, time for the details so read on...
In the slim chance that you are unaware, SingStar is Sony Europe's karaoke game. Using the original songs (not dodgy remakes), and the original video clips, the game scores you according to the pitch of your voice. The PS3 versions of SingStar remain quite similar to the PS2 titles in nearly every regard. Single player modes see you selecting a song and sing in either a long or short version with the goal being to score the highest number of points. If you want to practice these songs without scoring you can enter a Freestyle Mode.
|SingStar Abba looks as slick as ever.|
As with all iterations of the game the most fun is had when you hit the multi-player modes. In previous games this is split up into three sections; Pass the Mic, Battle and Duet. Pass the Mic is a party styled game for up to 8-players and sees gamers having to pass the mic from one player to another in a series of challenge - certainly fantastic entertainment if everyone is keen to play, but just watch that your mics don't start flying around the room! The battle mode allows two players to sing the same song at the same time, the person with the highest score is declared the victor. The third mode here is the Duet for 2-players which sees each player singing a different part of the song. Less competitive, but just as entertaining. Finally we have the Harmony Duet mode which allows two participants to sing different lines to a song at the same time.
In other SingStar titles this is usually the part where we tell you how the tracklist is vital to the discs success. That's not quite the case here as they are all from Abba - if you like the band, you'll like this release. Indeed all the bands biggest hits have been included, and the PS3 version includes five additional tracks not found on the recently reviewed PS2 version. Having said that though there are only 25 songs on this disc, down from the usual 30 but with such quality it's hard to complain.
|Mamma Mia is on SingStar Abba...|
Does Your Mother Know
Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)
I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do
Knowing Me, Knowing You
Money, Money, Money
One of Us
Summer Night City
Take a Chance on Me
Thank You for the Music
The Name of the Game
The Winner Takes It All
PS3 Exclusive Tracks:
Happy New Year
Head Over Heels
The Day Before You Came
When All Is Said and Done
SingStar Abba's online component isn't just about downloading the music though as Sony have built an entire community to get involved with. You can set up a profile about yourself, and the game will record your high score. You can view everyone else's profile online, and also look at their media such as photos, audio and video. Speaking of which it is possible to, though the Playstation's camera, take a photo of yourself (or your group of friends) or even record your performances to put online. New items can also be purchased including themes for the game (it is possible to change the look of the game with new background images and theme music which is a nice touch and while the game provides around a dozen on the disc, others can be purchased for a couple of dollars). The only thing missing from the online connectivity is the ability to compete online. Sadly while we hoped this would be added in future, this isn't the case as yet.
|The original Abba video clips are used.|
Sadly, as we mentioned in the very first SingStar review on PS3 the biggest disappointments are that there still aren't any wireless microphones for use with the game (even more disappointing now that Microsoft have wireless mics available for their karaoke title Lips) and also that there still aren't any High Definition video clips for download on the SingStore. The good news though is that the SingStore now contains hundreds of songs to download - much better then the 41 put up when the series first launched.
|Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight) on SingStar.|
Another ongoing disappointment is that despite the massive boost in processing power PS3 SingStar still does not recognise actual lyrics being sung - you can still hum at the right pitch to rack up the scores. Finally in terms of online connectivity users can still only upload 30 second clips from PSEye recordings while singing, and there's still no option to select the clip to be uploaded.
Graphically this game is on par with other SingStar titles on the PS3. The menu and interfact is super slick with some wonerful HD visuals, although the video clips still aren't too stunning to look at.
|The slick online interface.|
Sonically SingStar Abba sounds wonderful, although as you can imagine the songs are oly presented in stereo sound. Other audio such as menu effects are slick.
While SingStar Abba doesn't add anything new to the formula on PS3, it is a stunning release with all of the bands biggest hits on a single disc. Presentation is slick, videos look good for the age, and the online functionality remains. If you're an Abba fan then this is a must have release. We love it.
Review By: Dave WarnerOrder your copy now from Gameswarehouse.
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|GRAPHICS||Presentation is superb, video clips could still be better. ||85%|
|SOUND||It's Singstar. Clean music, nice menu music, nice effects.||87%|
|GAMEPLAY||This is SingStar; same as before. Everyone knows Abba though so it's a brilliant party game.||86%|
|VALUE||There are only 25 tracks on this release, but you'll know most.||83%|
|OVERALL||SingStar Abba is exactly what we hoped for from this release - great quality, and packed with tracks we all know an love.||86%|