Yoostar 2 was an interesting concept. Using the PlayStation Move camera or Kinect, players could insert themselves into, and reenact scenes from their favorite films. Lacking in its execution, the game didn't live up to the bold concept it was on paper. The plethora of technical issues it carried wasn't helping its case either.
Yoostar Entertainment and Blitz Games are making another pass at it though, drawing from MTV's expansive library and aiming to capture the series' promise this go around.
Yoostar on MTV (Xbox 360)
Devloper: Blitz Games
Publisher: Yoostar Enertainment Group
Release: Fall 2011
The basics of Yoostar on MTV work like this. You stand in front your Kinect and let it snap a quick photo. You then step out of frame and let the Kinect take a photo of the background. Then just mimic the silhouette on screen to let the game track your body movement and you're set.
Yoostar 2 was criticized for its very specific lighting requirements. If a light bulb in the room was too bright or dim, if sunlight was particularly potent, then the picture quality would heavily suffer. All Yoostar on MTV requires is that there are no reflective surfaces in the Kinect's line of sight. This includes, but may not be limited to, mirrors and picture frames. Still some oddities to work around, but it seems an improvement over the first.
Clips in Yoostar don't have to be reenacted exactly. There is a lip dub mode where players can freestyle, adding their own audio and playing around with the scene as they want. Lip dubs are not scored though, they're pretty much just for a player to mess around with if you want to divert from the beaten path.
Drawing from over 30 years of MTV history, Yoostar on MTV has quite a bit to work with. The game features clips from recent hits like Jersey Shore, to lesser known gems like Human Giant. Viva la Bam even makes an appearance, complete with warnings to not be dumb enough to reenact the stunts. Since this game is using the MTV license, you can expect playable music videos from Lady Gaga, Snoop Dogg and more.
I didn't exactly walk away from this one too hopeful though. There were plenty of oddities with the audio and video presentation. When playing back a clip the audio recorded from the performer sounded warped and distorted. In some cases, the original audio from the clip sounded warped. The video has issues as well. When playing as April Magera, Bam Magera's mom, a clip from Viva la Bam ran normally with April yelling and panicking at Bam's latest antic. When the clip played back, the background was blurry and didn't at all resemble the setting that the scene was in.
My main concern with the game is an issue of depth. Clips are very short, and from what was demoed, it doesn't even look like music videos will be fully playable. You can play as different characters in a scene (or different singers in a music video) so that's something.
There are also leaderboards and the ability to share clips on Facebook, but there just doesn't seem to be enough meat to make it a deep experience. Rather, it feels like it could be a quickly worn-out amusement. But if you have ever found yourself with the need to reenact Mike the Situation during a camera confessional, here's your chance.