The Good A fresh alternative to DDR, complete with mines to avoid and having to use your hands during dances.
The Bad The graphics show clean arrow displays and other tricks, but don't seem to have any pizzazz
The Bottom Line The game does have some excellent variety, and it's got a wealthy amount of modes to keep you busy.
GAME DESCRIPTION In The Groove (ITG) is an interactive dance video game that combines music, video, and a dance pad controller. Players spin, swivel, slide, and dance to earn points. In The Groove features arrow modifiers that make the game arrows spin, change speeds, boomerang, and move in 3D along with over 40 other effects that create additional challenges and customization
ONE-MINUTE REVIEW The Dance Dance Revolution games have dominated for years, and, with In the Groove, they still kind of do, although Red Octane and Roxor have provided a viable alternative that's definitely worth a look. With a heightened challenge level, imaginative new additions such as mines to avoid and being able to use your hands on the dance mat, and some traditional modes, it'll hit the spot for dance fans. Everyone else might want to rent it first, though- the Groove isn't for all gamers to get into.
+ Plenty of great modes, including the exhausting Marathon and the healthy Fitness.
+ Two player battle mode is always fun, unless you have someone who can't dance worth a darn.
+/- No licensed music to speak of, but a great variety of J-Pop and techno tunes should keep you busy.
+/- Seems to cater more to the hardcore DDR community than normal players.
BOTTOM LINE It's probably going to be a matter of time before Konami's lawsuit trounces the likes of In the Groove from existing in arcades, but at least now you can have a home version to keep with you in case DDR isn't enough for your dancing shoes. The game does have some excellent variety, and it's got a wealthy amount of modes to keep you busy. Still, the product feels like a second-rate DDR wannabe instead of clearly marking out its own territory. At least it's still fun.
RELEASE DATE: Q3 2005