When I walked into the Xbox 360 Lips #1 Hits event, I knew it was my kind of party. Located in a basement karaoke bar hidden away on a NYC side street, it was all about a Chinese food buffet, blaring music, and amateur karaoke stars singing along to new favorites and old standards. At a normal karaoke bar, you choose some mainstream song and sing along with the bootleg instrumental version of it. With Xbox 360 Lips, it’s a totally different experience. Lips plays the real version of your favorite songs with the main singer’s voice turned down but still audible. It makes you sound better, and it makes it easier to sing along and actually sound good. Besides Lips’ playlist of songs, you can connect your music player to the console and do karaoke to your favorite songs. The lyrics won’t show up, but it will be just as fun!!
Xbox 360 Lips #1 Hits is the follow-up to the original Lips game that was released last year. This time two wireless microphones are included that light up and a playlist that ranges from the new songs from Rihanna, Maroon 5 and old favorites from the likes of Johnny Cash and Queen. Once you grab a microphone the goal of the game is to sing along and match the song’s pitch and vowel annunciation, but apparently it’s not that hard to get good scores compared to other karaoke games. This makes Lips a great party game, because even the worst singers can get in on the fun and not have to restart the game because they got horrible scores. There is also an option for non-singers to participate by using the controller to activate “noisemakers” (like a cowbell), instead of singing or you can shake the microphone and use it as a tambourine. The microphone is also sensitive to movement that will be reflected on the screen. This is cool because it kind of forces you to get off the couch and to shake your groove thing – always a good thing.
The other thing that makes the game neat is the ability to download new music from the Xbox LIVE Marketplace to keep the party going. For $53.99 at Amazon, this is a game you won’t really get tired of, especially if you continually download music or plug in your personal music collection.