Dance on Broadway turned out to be quite a hit for Ubisoft when released on Wii a few years back: riding off the success of its insanely popular Just Dance series, the all-musical soundtrack had a niche all to itself that resulted in big sales for Ubisoft. Now the Move edition has entered stage left, but it barely passes the audition.
The game's Wii heritage isn't badly disguised, but still peeks through the cracks in the game's control system. Up to two players can take part in one of 25 musical numbers, with one or two controllers each, though there's no sign of the four-player mode that featured in the Wii release. You pick a character to groove along to a tune on stage, and all you must do is mimic the moves that scroll across the screen in circular icons. Each song has its own unique routine though many share moves, but the icons that tell you what the move will be aren't always clear enough, so your first time through most songs will be spent figuring out whether you should shimmy or shake and in which direction.
The controller recognition is spotty too: while you're supposedly marked on accuracy, rhythm and "ability to dance", you'll sometimes get passed over for points for no clear reason. There's no feedback on what you're doing wrong, and no real tutorial save for a few still screens that impart no real information.
Dance on Broadway is obviously intended to be played with others, so it's a good job that the main Be A Star mode supports two players. Here your aim is to bring your ailing theatre up from the doldrums by impressing critics with your style, unlocking songs as you go until you've conquered the world, all told through static screens and dancing. It's a decidedly low-budget way to impart any long term play, suited to simple pick up and play sessions.
There are two difficulties on offer, "casual" and "pro", with the only difference being that players in casual mode can pass a stage with only three stars, whereas pro players must rack up all five. That's it: there are no extra moves and no alternative choreography, just the need for the controller to pick up enough of your moves to score you five stars.
If you don't fancy going through the pseudo-career, there's a Party mode that offers up 20 of the 25 songs for immediate play, with the others unlocked by progressing through Be A Star.
Naturally the soundtrack is one of the game's highlights, with songs from shows including The Lion King, Hairspray, Cabaret and more. They're not original cast recordings, but they're chirpy enough and displaying the lyrics on-screen should keep onlookers happy, though it's a shame there's no support for SingStar microphones.
Graphically the game is a few steps up on its Wii counterpart, but one look at your glassy-eyed representatives on stage will tell you this isn't the PS3's finest hour. Despite singing making up at least half the Broadway experience, the guys and dolls resolutely keep their lips sealed at all times.
Dance on Broadway is exactly what you'd expect: a low-budget Wii port that makes no real use of PlayStation Move's advanced features. As a party piece you might throw on to entertain a few friends it just about has some merit, but it's so content-light it won't last you much longer than a night.