I am suffering from déjà vu. I am sure I played Let’s Sing 2021 a few weeks ago. No, that was Let’s Sing Queen. Aside from different songs, they are exactly alike. I had enjoyed the Queen version because the band mean a lot to me and their music ultimately shaped my career. Off the back of that experience, I was happy to play the next instalment in this vast singing series, but this time around, I was left feeling old.
Let’s Sing 2021 is developed by Voxler SAS and published by Koch Media, and is available on the Playstation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. For me, it is the very first game I have played on my Xbox Series S. That poor machine gets turned on for the first time and is subjected to a 31-year-old man thinking he sounds like Katy Perry when in truth, he sounds more like a wounded moose.
I have played two games from this franchise and although they are essentially identical, that is not a complaint. This is karaoke and the standard here is high, so there is no reason at all to change the formula. This has a specific audience, and it caters to their needs with precision. The game is bright, crisp, and straight to the point. You choose an avatar for yourself, of which there are four to start with, but you have another sixteen to unlock through levelling up. Once you have chosen your character, you select a song and start singing. There are seven modes to pick from, including classic, world contest, and let’s party. You can perform solo, as a duet, in two teams of four that compete through different challenges, and once you have warmed up you can go online and pit your pipes for world domination.
I spent my time in classic mode and found 30 songs all ranging in difficulty from one to five stars. The game features hits from artists such as Ariana Grande, Dua Lipa, Billie Eilish, Genesis, Justin Bieber, Kim Wilde, Lewis Capaldi, Maroon 5, Seal, The Lumineers, and Linkin Park. There is even a song from The Lion King which I had a blast with. A Disney version of this game would be wonderful. Songs are performed either via your headset microphone, a USB microphone, or your smartphone. I went with my phone and once you download the app, you are up and running in no time. Importantly, it does not matter if you cannot sing, this game is about having fun. You will not be punished in the slightest for missing notes or for being out of tune. Regardless of your ability, this game will lift your spirits. That is all it wants to do. The only reason I did not enjoy myself was because the music is not for me. The structure of music has changed over time, and I do not like a lot of modern stuff. Years ago you would have a couple of verses and then the chorus, followed by another verse and what we call a bridge (a small section to provide contrast to the rest of the song) and then the chorus a couple more times to finish off. The chorus is the hook, that is the part of the song you remember. In the digital age, with our attention spans getting shorter and shorter, the hook is coming earlier and earlier in the song. Now, it feels like you have one verse and then a chorus for three minutes. But I digress. Music lesson aside, this is another strong release for a game series that looks like it will not be slowing down any time soon.
My only genuine complaint is something I mentioned when reviewing Let’s Sing Queen. I had songs where I was singing Freddie Mercury’s lead as well as singing the harmonies. It is too much for one person. That grievance carries over into this game. There are songs where I am singing multiple parts that are back to back and it is all too easy to run out of breath. Not a catastrophe, just seems an odd decision.
Let's Sing 2021
If karaoke is what you’re after, then you cannot ask for more.
- Formula for these games still has no reason to change
- Solid mix of musicSolid mix of music
- Good fun
- For me, an ephemeral experience
- Singing both the lead and harmonies is still a handful
- (cheap shot) music is not what it used to be