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    Singstar: ultimate party

    Even for the most I’d Do Anything For Love crazed karaoke addict (hello mother), this is the toughest of tough sells: a SingStar game incompatible with the 25+ PS2 and PS3 series entries that preceded it. PS4’s inability to read last gen discs made this reality inevitable at some point, but it still hurts like your tone deaf cousin’s six pints fuelled rendition of Call Me Maybe.

    It’s not only the selection of tracks which has been stripped back for Sony’s cord stretching new-gen debut, either. On the plus side, the new block based menus are a pleasure to navigate and expedite song selection, while bellowing into your smartphone via the accompanying app is a big improvement on scrabbling round for mics and/or batteries.

    numbers game
    The biggest change is the scrapping of the old ‘out of 9999’ scoring system, replaced with one where you rack up points in the millions. Its effect on the experience depends on how you play, there’s more satisfaction in earning a solo super score, but close-run duets with victory coming down to a song’s last line are less frequent. Sadly.

    The on-disc tracklist is equally divisive, nestling Carly Rae Jepsen’s aforementioned foot tapper alongside Frozen’s Let It Go, Hello by Lionel Richie, and ugh Olly Murs’ Dear Darlin’. Evidently Sony sought to include something for everyone, yet the mish mash of genres makes for an unsatisfying blend. Which is where DLC comes in: songs bought on PS3 can be redownloaded for free (somewhat easing the backwards compatibility upset), and a selection of new tracks are available at £1.15 a pop.

    Thankfully, all the concerns raised here become immaterial once you and pals start battling it out for the King (or Queen) Of Karaoke honours. There’s a long way to go before this feels as fleshed out as its confident predecessors, yet there’s enough potential goodness to suggest an eventual return to the top of the charts.

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