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  • Writer's pictureAllan Jenks

Game Review #462: Zumba® Burn It Up! (Nintendo Switch)

Reviewer: Allan Jenks

Developer: Kuju Entertainment

Publisher: 505 Games

Category: Lifestyle, Party, Fitness

Release Date: 11.19.2019

Price: $39.99


Buy Zumba® Burn It Up! from the Nintendo Switch eShop here.

I’m Apparently the Fitness Guy of the Group?

I just want to start out this review by saying that I am not what you would call a “fit” person. I will say that having a toddler has definitely improved my cardio and upper body strength more than when I actually was going to the gym, but still, I will not be running any marathons any time soon. That being said, I found myself the lucky recipient of the review code for Zumba® Burn It Up! anyway. Fortunately, though I personally have no dancing ability whatsoever, my wife is actually quite the enthusiast. She also enjoys things like Cardio Drumming and Sweatin’ to the Oldies, so she agreed to do the gameplay portion of this review, though admittedly, she was not sure if she would like it either—but she’s a team player, so she tried it anyway!

Do You Zumba?

Now, I was personally not very familiar with the whole Zumba thing, other than knowing it is a dance aerobics-type exercise class, and my wife was a bit more familiar with it than I was, but not by much. There is no tutorial in this game, so I was concerned it would be something that required you to already be a Zumba expert prior to playing. Thankfully, I was wrong. Upon firing up the game, my wife jumped right into a low-intensity warmup song and took to it fairly easily.

The dance moves were not particularly simple, but the controls are fairly forgiving, and the songs will play until the end regardless of how many times you miss the moves, so it does allow for a learning curve without becoming Guitar Hero. You can actually just pretty much move your right arm around in circles and get credit, but the game does grade your accuracy on a scale of “good” to “Zumba!” just to let you know that it knows. At the end of each song, you get a summary of how well you did, as well as how much energy you burned, and the game also keeps track of your progress.

As far as the variety goes, there are over 30 different songs to try, ranging from low- to high-intensity. Most of the songs are focused on a latin-style dance groove—with a few songs leaning more towards a pop/hip-hop type vibe—which makes sense, considering the program was created by Columbian dancer/choreographer Beto Perez, with Brazilian pop singer Claudia Leitte as the international ambassador to the Zumba Fitness program. My wife expressed that, while she gets that it is focused on this particular genre of music—and she likes the songs—she wishes that there were a few more hip-hop and/or pop songs to add a bit more variety to the programs. Additionally, she wishes there were more low-intensity songs to warm up/cool down to, as the majority of the songs are medium-intensity or high-intensity.

A Full Workout Program

With Zumba: Burn it Up!, you can jump in for a quick song or two or hand-pick your own routine, but there is also an option to take a full class, which has you work through a pre-selected set that is designed to maximize your workout flow, and there are several different classes to try. This is great, because you basically have a new workout class each day to do, and it keeps it fresh for you. My wife agreed to try this game out just to help me out with the review, but she has since adopted it as her new daily workout. She was immediately surprised with how intense the workout was, while at the same time still being fun. In fact, her direct quote after first playing the game was, “Wow! That is the most fun I have ever had playing a workout game!”

Cool Down

Overall, while this game is obviously not for everyone, it is a great game for anyone who loves to dance, loves to exercise, or both. You do not need to be familiar with Zumba to play this game—though I initially thought that would be the case—and you will get a great workout! It’s “New year, new me” time too, so if you are looking for a fun way to get in a good workout, or if you just like to burn off some steam with a good dance routine, then you will absolutely want to try out Zumba® Burn It Up! There is even a multiplayer mode where you and a friend—or friends—can work out together locally. It is a good motivator too, because you won’t pass the song until everyone playing passes it, so it provides that extra little per pressure some of us need!

Score: 9.5/10

Buy Zumba® Burn It Up! from the Nintendo Switch eShop here.

Follow Kuju Entertainment

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Follow 505 Games

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*A game code was provided for review purposes

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