Review round-up: 'DefJam Rapstar' vs 'DJ Hero 2'

Since the early days of musical games
Guitar Hero and
Rock Band, we've seen karaoke and dancing show just how popular they can be too. The musical variety on offer is increased further still with two recent offerings found in the hip-hop stylings
DefJam Rapstar and remixing prowess of
DJ Hero 2 - how did they fare at review?

Safe to say that the first DJ Hero wasn't received as well as the new one has been. Though it didn't do badly at review, many potential purchasers were put off by the required and expensive turntable control pad.

Since then, however, it's picked up quite a following, especially following heavy price cuts as retailers cleared their decks of the large bundle boxes.

DJ Hero 2 is able to focus solely on the sounds, with plenty of gameplay tweaks in evidence, a streamlining of the overall experience, and some killer tracks.

DefJam RapStar didn't have that legacy to build on. Rather, it was a case of avoiding errors in other companies' attempts.

While it's the first game from 4mm Games, the company has made bold steps to capture the hip-hop experience with a tracklisting that encompasses many of the scene's styles.

It may not be as refined as DJ Hero 2, and could still live or die in the hands of its community, but nonetheless provides a very solid base to build on should there be a sequel somewhere down the line. For fans of rap and hip-hop, it's most definitely worth a look into.

DJ Hero 2 - www.djhero.com
Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii. Rated Teen / 12+.
Released October 19 in North America, October 22 in Europe.
Price: $/€59 ($/€49 on Wii). From $/€99 for game + turntable.

Game Informer - 9.25/10
"Bests its predecessor in nearly every way" "The track list expertly balances superstars with respected producers, plus outstanding tracks by lesser-known artists"

Joystiq - 4.5/5
"Polishing the very mechanics of virtual mixmastering to a near-perfect sheen" "[Freestyle sections] will make you feel completely awesome"

Destructoid - 9/10
"The smallest tweaks really go a long way in DJ Hero 2" "A number of battle modes, many of them also lifted directly from the Guitar Hero series"

Eurogamer - 9/10
"Escalating difficulty levels gradually introduce new elements" "The soundtrack is faultless... crucially, it's still a powerful draw if you don't know or even like the music"

IGN - 8.5
"Mash-ups remain impressive" "While the novelty has worn off slightly, this is still my music game of choice" "Great new additions, but also a couple of missteps"


Def Jam Rapstar
- www.defjamrapstar.com
Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii. Rated Teen / 12+
Released October 5 in North America, November 26 in Europe.
Price: $/€59 ($/€49 on Wii). With microphone for $/€10 extra.

Giant Bomb - 4/5
"The core of Def Jam Rapstar is rock-solid, and the community video feature is sure to provide a lot of entertainment" "A few of the songs are just ill-suited for the format"

GameShark - B
"Highlighting just how much talent is needed to be a successful MC" "There is some serious breath control and track familiarity needed to get through" "Did a good job of selecting songs that draw from all over hip-hop"

GameSpot - 7.5
"Anyone with even a passing interest in rap is likely to find something to enjoy here." "Questionable choices when it comes to what parts you do and don't sing on a given song"

Digital Chumps - 7.6
"Makes you want to progress and learn the songs. And it's able to stay fun during the repetition" "Much like Sing Star and Lips, this game was built for social interaction"

GameTrailers (video review) - 7.0
"A solid singing game that would benefit from more fleshed-out features in future installments" "The challenge comes from trying to nail the lryics, rhythm, and in certain songs, pitch"

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