The silver screen - weekend destination for many, creative endeavor for others - is at the heart of Yoostar 2, an immersive acting experience developed by Blitz Games. Billed as "The Ultimate Party Game", Yoostar 2 challenges you to deliver on your looks and acting chops, bringing your favorite movie scenes to life in a delicate balance of spot-on delivery with both physical and verbal improvisation, not to mention good-hearted fun. With over 80 scenes to choose from, as well as additional movies via downloadable content on the way, will Yoostar 2 be the next blockbuster hit, or should this title have gone straight to DVD?
The first thing you'll notice when jumping into the game is the sense of glamour and stardom that it evokes when it comes to being a movie star. Right from the start screen, you are inundated with an epic soundtrack on par with a star-studded red-carpet appearance to the Academy Awards, though the user interface in Yoostar 2 takes a markedly less grandiose approach in its visual design, opting instead for cool blue and lavender overtones in its menu screens.
One can imagine the arduous amount of work and talent it takes to capture some of the most memorable movie performances of our time, so Yoostar 2 goes with a deliberately simple approach when it comes to putting you in those same shoes; simply choose a scene from a movie, decide on whether you'd like to follow the script spot-on or ad-lib (the game scores you differently based on this option), line up your shot so that you appear in the proper proportions and perspective on the screen, and then the camera starts rolling. Taking a cue from elements of the rhythm genre, your lines are displayed at the top-center of the screen, with visual indicators that let you know when your next line is coming up, as well as the speed at which the line must be delivered. Other non-player dialogues are shown as well, but are grayed out so that you can follow along and not mistakenly take someone else's line.
One of the main points that cannot be stressed enough is how fun this game can be if you're in a group with the right people. In some scenes, players can jump into pairs and deliver their lines together, which can lead to some hilarious moments, especially if both players intend to ad-lib their lines and delivery. Even better, Blitz Games seems to be aware of how awesome it would be for players to be able to share said hilarious moments with their friends and the Internet, implementing a Community Feature that lets you use all of your favorite social networking sites to post your content.
That being said, there are some caveats to such an endearing title. The movie selection that the title launches with provides a variety of different genres, from high-octane action to evocative melodrama, though comedies are at the forefront here in terms of choice. Expect to see a lot of Ben Stiller and Eddie Murphy movies here for inspiration, with a somewhat quizzical lack of Will Ferrell films to choose from. Also, for those who have never been to film school or taken an interior design course, it should be noted that proper lighting is a significant factor in terms of the quality of the image captured, and can be a deal-breaker if a player finds himself unable to amend this situation. The title's in-game tutorial tersely addresses this issue, without providing any further assistance or tips to help mitigate this problem. It would appear that most, if not all possible technical issues that can arise while playing Yoostar 2 emanate from the lighting.
These issues aside, Yoostar 2 is just as fun to use as a tool as it is to play as a game, providing a quick and easy way to possibly become internet-famous, or to just have some good old-fashioned fun, acting enthusiasts and others alike. It is currently available on the Kinect for Xbox 360 and the Playstation Move.