I expected Zumba Kids to be a slightly cleaner, babied version of the other Zumba games. I was quite wrong. Zumba Kids is lovely, with all of the familiar Zumba game menus and prompts taken over by bright, crayon-looking versions of themselves. The backgrounds also turn into colorings as you play, adding to the high energy and fun of the game.
Catering to players age 7-11, Zumba Kids features more than 20 dance styles, including hip-hop, swing, surf, disco, and salsa.
There are both solo and multiplayer game modes, as well as mini-games and classes. For the gamification-driven, there are also bonus videos, virtual badges, and virtual stickers to be unlocked for an in-game scrapbook.
Players must follow the moves of the on screen dancers and try to perfect their Zumba skills.
What I loved most is the diversity of the songs, not just in their choice, but in the accompanying dance moves. As someone who has studied a bit of dance from various cultures, I can tell you that your child will actually be learning a few authentic dances to go with the songs. They also have Justin Bieber’s “Beauty and a Beat” and Willow Smith’s “Fireball,” which are sure to please the youngins.
The dances ranged from simplistic and obviously created to excercise a specific set of muscles to very intricate and fast, meaning this game will work for a range of dancing skills. The songs are also much shorter than the Zumba Fitness Rush and Zumba Fitness Core routines, meaning your kids won’t drive themselves to a heat stroke.
If your children are little geeks who love to stay inside instead of running around outside, pop them in front of Zumba Kids and they’ll be sweating in no time. I’ve found the Zumba games to be a great compromise for my shyness about going to a gym and my desire to be healthy and in shape, so I definitely recommend this game!
Developed by Zoë Mode and rated E for Everyone, Zumba Kids is now available on Kinect for Xbox 360 and Wii for $29.99.