Just Dance 2023 Edition
The Just Dance-franchise has been around since 2009 and a volume has appeared in the series every year since then. Especially in the Wii era, several spin-offs appeared, such as a Smurfs and Disney version, but these days Ubisoft is taking it a little easier on the dance game. In recent years, it may have been a bit té quiet and was often more or less the same game. Ubisoft has indicated that they did make some innovations this year, and we went ahead and played the game for you to see if they did.
We can hardly imagine never having heard of this series, but for that one person who has never heard of Just Dance has heard; Just Dance is a dance game where you try to imitate the movements on the screen as well as you can. On the Nintendo Switch you hold a Joy-Con in your hands and on the other consoles a phone with the Just Dance-app. Depending on your timing and suppleness, you’ll be rated for your dance, and of course, the goal is to be so’n high possible score.
The basic game of Just Dance 2023 Edition Contains just over forty songs. You can show your skills on well-known songs such as I Knew You Were Trouble by Taylor Swift, Numb by Linkin Park, Sissy That Walk by RuPaul and for the Benelux there is a special Wing by K3. Despite the fact that it is ‘but’ so’n forty songs, it does contain the necessary variety. Even then, you’ll get bored of the standard songs pretty quickly, especially if you’re an avid dancer. So you almost can’t avoid also subscribing to Just Dance+, the replacement for Just Dance Unlimited. Still, it’s not a very worthy replacement at this point, as Just Dance Unlimited gave you access to almost 700 songs and the new service has to make do with so’n 150. Pretty special, since the price just stayed the same. Now again, we shouldn’t get too heavy on this, as the base game costs a little more than € 30, and Just Dance+ costs just under € 25.- per year, which means that in total you pay nothing more than for any other full price title. But of course it’s something to keep in mind.
As we had mentioned above, Ubisoft has made innovations and it is immediately apparent when you start the game. The menu got a makeover and the way you can search for songs is a lot more conveniently laid out. You can filter by genre, time period or just search by name. This is an improvement over previous volumes, where you sometimes had to scroll for a while just to get to your favorite track. Another innovation that shows up pretty quickly, and actually manages to add something, are the new backgrounds. These were rather boring and flat in previous editions, but the developers have added a lot more depth to them this time around, making it much more alive and more like a video clip of sorts. This makes it a lot more enjoyable to watch, even as a spectator.
Another real improvement is the addition of an online mode, which allows you to play with friends, acquaintances or family. You’ll all have to own Just Dance 2023 Edition and added each other as friends. If you want to play songs that are part of the Just Dance+ catalog, you will also both need to have an active subscription, which is actually a shame again. However, this nice addition does come with the removal of World Dance Floor, a mode from previous volumes where you could dance with a random person.
In addition, Ubisoft has also decided to remove the Sweat mode, which allowed you to track how many calorieën there were burned while dancing. So it seems that the developers have opted for a fresh start of sorts, making the version feel a bit empty upon release, especially when it comes to multiplayer and additional songs. Fortunately, Ubisoft did announce that the Just Dance+ service will get more content in the coming months, so we’ll just have to rely on that then.
Just Dance 2023 Edition does bring some innovations over previous volumes, but unfortunately this is offset by the loss of some other things. The menu has received a nice visual update and it has never been easier to search for a specific song. The backgrounds have also received an update, making it a lot more alive now than before. Eventually you won’t escape also subscribing to the new service, which unfortunately doesn’t even include a quarter of the songs that Just Dance Unlimited had. At the bottom line, you’ll pay like this’n €60, which is a pretty normal price. Still, you feel like it is less than before and we hope Ubisoft will add some more content soon. Until then, we are having fun.
Just Dance 2023 Edition was played on the Nintendo Switch for this review. The game is also available on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.