'Dance Central 3' brings the throwdown to your living room

Dance Central 3 multiplayer turns your living room into a dance-floor throwdown.

Dance Central 3 was announced yesterday at Microsoft's E3 press conference. The title boasts over 40 new songs as well as the ability to import tunes from Dance Central and Dance Central 2.

Today we got a chance to go head-to-head with our peers in Dance Central 3's new multiplayer face-off mode. Up to eight players divide into two teams as evenly as possible for a battle-royale of moves. The Kinect snaps a photo of each team and will randomly select a member from each group to face-off in battle. Each round consists of a dance mini-game, and the player with the highest points at the end of the round wins.

Our mini-game was a variation of Dance Central's traditional single-player mode. We had to match the moves displayed on the screen, performing each one in time with the music. Another match consisted of players creating their own moves and dancing free-form, earning points by stealing each other's moves. Another asked players to create their own routine one move at a time, then ask their opponent to replicate it. Once all players on each team had participated, a final round asked each team to put forward their best dancer for a sudden-death showdown.

Dance Central 3's multiplayer mode brings a fresh twist to the franchise, bringing the classic notion of the heated heart-pounding dance-floor battle a la West Side Story to the comfort of our living room. The game has great potential as one of the next big party games and is a wonderfully evolved improvement of its predecessor.

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