Let me set the stage for you, I am a mother of three who only really plays video games if the kids ask, and has a full-time job with little time for much else. I want to get in better shape, I want to feel better so I went out and searched for some Zumba classes for myself earlier in the year. After a few different studios I finally found a place that I liked with a teacher that was great. Then it happened…the three kids decided that I would no longer have time for Zumba as their sports ramped up and my life turned to a calendar full of practices and games. No longer could I make it to the Zumba class I enjoyed, nor any other Zumba class on the schedule (they could sure use either 4 a.m. classes or 11 p.m. classes for people with kids). But wait (think infomercial voice here), we may have a solution, one that is on my own clock, a Zumba game that works with the Microsoft Xbox 360 Kinect.
The Kinect version of the game has so much to offer to get your workout going which includes voice control, but I can tell you we never have had good luck with it, and not just with this game so we use motions and the controller if we need to. From the main menu you can select either a single song or a full class which includes 45 preset classes of different lengths which include 20, 45, or 60 minute classes. For me the 45 minute classes work perfect, but having the other options is great. From this menu you can also learn the steps (for beginners) and view your progress tracker. The game works as one would expect as you mirror the instructors movement and are given feedback in the form of “Nice”, “Hot”, “Zumba!” when you do the moves correctly. You will also get stars as you dance which will open new bonus material and achievements. Like other Kinect Dance Type Games you will get some visual cues on what moves are coming up and that is always super helpful when dancing. As stated above you can play with two players (which can include your kids) and you will get a second enrollment screen before each routine if someone will want to join. There are also all kinds of progress meters and achievements to help you continue your quest to being a fit Zumba practitioner.
The other nice thing that I have found with Zumba Fitness Core being available to me during anytime of the day is that if I feel like I haven’t spent enough time with the kids that day there is two player support to allow the kids to join me for a workout (for them it is more about the score and fun!) and I can then even multitask in my workout and time with the children. What Zumba Fitness Core does is give me options, options to work out on my schedule with a system that is more than a game, but an actual fun workout for me that has already jumped up and engaged me with features and quality and entice me to continue working out. That is really the goal of a home workout program, and Zumba Fitness Core has reached that lofty goal with high quality and diverse music and workout programs that come with tracking and progress systems that keep you coming back from more. The fact that is on your own schedule means that this is something you can actually stick with regardless of how the day goes or who needs to be at what practice at what time. A workout program for Mothers to take back their body, even with a rough schedule. After a 45 minute class I could feel it the next day, so that is a very telling sign! Also the kids had a blast playing the Sugar Plum Fairy song/dance in time for the holiday.
From some of the technical aspects (remember I am not a gamer): I thought the graphics were very good quality and the tracking was as good as other games in the genre on the Kinect. The amount of songs and types of dance is robust and diverse enough to keep you interested. Zumba Fitness core does a great job at being your full-fledged replacement for getting in your car and driving to a class that may not fit your schedule. If you are already going to a class once a week, this would be your perfect supplement to those classes.
- The first and only game designed to strengthen your core and sculpt your abs within a solid total body workout.
- Dance to 40 new songs, including contagious Zumba® fitness originals and more smash hits from today’s hottest artists like Enrique Iglesias, Don Omar, Karmin, Sean Paul, Bob Marley, The Donnas, Kat DeLuna, Tiesto, Nayer featuring Pitbull and many more! Check out the full soundtrack.
- Move to 30+ different dance styles as you play including new rhythms like Brazilian Funk, Jive, Disco, African and Polynesian.
- New fitness features let you set personal and shared community goals (Kinect only).
- New nutrition and lifestyle tips provide guidance on how to enhance your health, well-being and appearance.
- Get your party on in 4 new locations for 8 total: Venetian Ballroom, Exotic Waterfall, Tiki Beach and Zumba® Stage Show.
- Follow along as 6 superstar Zumba® instructors guide you through each routine: Beto, Tanya Beardsley, Gina Grant and Kass Martin, plus new additions Loretta Bates and Nicholas Logrea.
- Dance hands-free with the included Zumba® Fitness belt that lets players holster their Wii Remote. Dance naturally hands-free with Kinect technology that enables full body motion tracking for an unencumbered interactive workout.
- Create your own Core class, master three different game modes and customize your own workout.
- Unlock cool new video rewards as you play so you can get to know Zumba’s superstar instructors.
- Accessible gameplay features Low, Medium and High Intensity routines tiered for all skill levels plus a full Tutorial mode.
- Two player support on Kinect and four player support on Wii lets you party together with friends and family members.
Kinect Version Exclusive Features
- Voice control for Kinect menu navigation gets you dancing even faster.
- In game class locator lets you find a live Zumba® class near you.
- Online Zumba® news feature keeps you up-to-date on brand information, community events and promotions.
- Earn achievements as you play and extra videos exclusive to the Kinect game.
- Per limb feedback in Tutorial mode.
Note: Zumba Fitness Core provided for review by Majesco