It’s been over two months since we reviewed YooStar 2, the next iteration in the standalone TV peripheral-turned Kinect (and PlayStation Move) game. However, while we’ve been goofing around with the various scenes and back-drops in the title, Blitz Games Studios has been hard at work polishing the YooStar tech for their next, and most outrageous, release – YooStar on MTV.
We got a chance to go hands-on with the YooStar on MTV, as well as the improved software, at E3 2011 – and, while there are still some kinks, there’s also plenty of promise in the upcoming installment.
There’s no doubt that the team at Blitz Games Studios has been listening to feedback from Yoostar fans, and detractors, alike.
In our YooStar 2 review we highlighted a number of areas that needed improvement, most notably – robust video sharing (via YouTube) and improved detection/recognition (since the on-screen images were often grainy, even in ideal lighting). Shortly after the release of the title, YooStar 2 was patched with YouTube support – opening the door for the kind of viral-video sharing that a user-created content title requires. While the feature might have come a bit too late for YooStar 2 review scores, it was certainly a welcome addition.
Now, with the release of YooStar on MTV, the developers are set to address the second concern – improved detection. Our demo of the updated software at E3 showcased a major step forward – with the on-screen player melding into the scene much better than before (with only a thin white “halo” outline around the edges). That said, even under the “ideal” and carefully controlled conditions in the E3 demo room, the game still had trouble detecting a player who didn’t create enough contrast with the backdrop – in our case, one of our writers who was wearing a white T-Shirt looked somewhat scrambled (since the background was white as well). However, the developers are aware of the issue and the tech still represented a major improvement. Plus, the team is still experimenting with other ways to detect players that aren’t showing-up as clearly.
The improved tech will arrive alongside YooStar on MTV but will also be patched into YooStar 2 – so, even if a player isn’t excited about the MTV Brand game, they will still benefit from some of the improved engineering.
That said, based upon the clip we demoed, which featuring Jersey Shore‘s Snooki (in all her quotable glory), YooStar on MTV could be an outrageous party game – for anyone willing to act like a fool on camera. The title will feature content from both MTV original programming as well as fan-favorite music videos – providing a variety of ways to enjoy the game.
While many of the YooStar on MTV details are still under-wraps, there’s no doubt it could be an interesting, and no doubt bankable, direction to take the series – especially considering the evolution in the tech. Even if the MTV brand content doesn’t appeal to everyone, hopefully the new features and enhanced detection will give some players, who might have passed on YooStar 2 originally, a reason to have another look.
Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick and let us know what other entertainment brands you’d like to see get the YooStar treatment.
YooStar 2 is available now for the PS3 (with PlayStation Move) and Xbox 360 (with Kinect).