|System: PS2, Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: A2M||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Disney Interactive Studios||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 30, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-8||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Nathan Meunier
When it comes to musicals, most people fall under one of two camps: either you love them or you hate them. If you consider yourself among the latter then you're likely wary of the ever-present danger of picking up a passing jingle and having it glue itself into your brain on a semi-permanent basis. At that point you have little recourse but to listen to the song, sing along, and exorcise the demons. By the end you might just find you've changed your outlook on musical storytelling and had some fun in the process.
For those who've been accidentally exposed to the Disney Channel lately - whether through a younger sibling, your own child, via channel flipping, or other means - High School Musical: Sing It! offers an opportunity to cast out the audio poltergeists you've been absentmindedly humming for months. Let's not forget the fans too. If you're one of the thousands of people who absolutely loved the incredibly successful Disney movies then Sing It! will let you let you bust out your mad vocal skills in front of friends and family.
Hot on the heels of the second High School Musical movie, Sing It! incorporates 21 songs from both films, and an additional nine songs from other Disney artists, into a karaoke style game which puts players in a variety of interactive musical scenes from the original High School Musical film. PS2 owners can choose to pick up a copy either bundled with the USB microphone or without. The PS2 version is compatible with the microphones from the Singstar games. In either case, you'll be singing along through the TV to the catchy tunes as the game's many characters prance around. The words will appear on the lower portion of the screen, and you must hit the notes at the right pitch and the right cadence by following guides across the upper portion of the screen. Gameplay is more demanding than simple straight-up karaoke - which traditionally doesn't require any measure of actual skill whatsoever - as you will be judged on how accurately you sing the notes. Getting the song lyrics perfectly right doesn't really matter as much as hitting the proper pitch at the right timing.
A small basketball moves along the gray bars following your vocal pitch as you sing along, so it's relatively easy to match up your singing visually if you're not adept at doing it by ear. When the bars pass by, they'll turn a light blue if you hit them correctly and a darker shade of blue if you're off the mark. Singing a phrase well earns you multipliers which will boost your score significantly. Getting through a song isn't tough, but accumulating a high score is necessary for unlocking additional songs, new settings, characters, and outfits. Most of the tunes are fairly short, and they won't strain your voice or leave your out of breath thanks to a few pauses. Two characters trade-off phrases in each song, typically with male and female parts, and players have the option of singing solo or passing the microphone back and forth for a duet with friends.