Am I crazy, or do stand-alone karaoke games seem pretty pointless these days? If I want to sing, I’m not reaching for Lips or Karaoke Revolution, I’m booting up Rock Band 2 and its 1000+ songs. But, hey, that’s just me. If you’re still in the market for a plain ol’ karaoke game, however, Konami’s reboot of its singing series might be right up your alley. We cover all of the details on Karaoke Revolution right here in our full review.
- Publisher: Konami
- Developer: Blitz Games
- ESRB Rating: “T” for Teen
- Genre: Karaoke
- Pros: Character customization; Space Oddity; compatible with previous game DLC; master tracks
- Cons: Bland menus; odd career mode; on-disc songs are too scattershot
Karaoke Revolution includes 50 songs (all master tracks) on-disc that cover a wide range of genres. The wide variety in song types seems like a good idea, but in execution produces a game where you’re only going to find a handful of songs out of those 50 you actually like and can sing halfway decently. It does have David Bowie’s “Space Oddity”, though, which gets an A+ in my book. Another nice touch is that DLC for previous Karaoke Revolution games on the Xbox 360 (with the awful American Idol tie in …) is compatible with this game which helps to fill out the song list a little better.
There are some interesting customization options available to create characters and even build your own stage and it all works really well. The only problem is that to unlock more custom parts to use you have to play through the oddly designed career mode. It isn’t much of a career, however, and instead consists of you just singing a bunch of songs to fill out records. Do you know what records are, kids? They are the black, super-thin looking Frisbees in your parents’ closet. During the career mode, the records piece together as you sing more songs and there are three of them to complete, so it takes a good long while to actually “beat” the career. There isn’t any player progression, no feeling of actually accomplishing something, and no semblance of an actual career anywhere, however. It is functionally the exact same as the normal quick play mode, which is really disappointing.
The actual gameplay itself is perfectly fine. Just like any karaoke game, the words scroll across the screen and you sing at the right time. The point system in the game is interesting because you can rack up massive multipliers by completing multiple phrases in a row that result in ridiculously high scores. It has a neat effect of making you more confident as you sing and you end up having a lot of fun because your score keeps going up and up and up and it makes you feel really good even if you might sound awful.
Graphics & Sound
The presentation is one definite weak area in Karaoke Revolution. The menus are just bland, square blocks of information and the color scheme is simple and rather unattractive. The character models and on-stage stuff all looks fine (the characters look pretty good, in fact) but the animation and lip-syncing is pretty awful.
The sound is fine, at least, and the master tracks mean everything should sound like you expect it to. There is nothing worse than trying to sing karaoke and the song that comes up is some weird cover that doesn’t quite match up to the real thing, which throws your timing and everything else off. You won’t have that problem here, thankfully.
Ultimately, Karaoke Revolution is simply “okay”. The presentation isn’t stellar and the career mode leaves a lot to be desired, but as a karaoke game it plays just fine. If you just want to sing, it definitely gets the job done. It doesn’t have a fancy microphone like Lips, however, so I’d have to recommend Lips over KR. Karaoke Revolution is a fun party game, just like any music/karaoke game, and if all you want to do is sing (and you already have Lips), it isn’t a bad pick up.
Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy