February 21st, 2003 | PlayStation 2 | Preview
Aerobics Revolution
Konami goes full-bore into the fitness world with this all-healthy-all-the-time version of DDR.


Box art thumb

DDR evolves the only other way it can: into a calorie-burning suite of aerobic activities and fitness planning.

Feel the churn

If the Diet Mode has been your favorite Dance Dance Revolution feature over the years, then Konami has something right up your alley. Coming this March in Japan will be a special game designed for use with a DDR dance pad and packed with games and tools to keep you lean and mean. Enter Aerobics Revolution.

Of course, no introduction of an aerobics game can be complete without a tip of the hat to the past. As we all know, it all started about 15 years ago. A little game called Dance Aerobics appeared on the NES. It was one of few games to be compatible with the Power Pad accessory, a sort of DDR pad for the 8-bit generation. In it you watched your pixelized aerobics coach guide you through a series of exercises that ingeniously involved stepping on the right buttons on the Power Pad. Of course your fail rate was often quite high, and the minigames didn’t make things much better, but it’s clear that Dance Aerobics set a standard. One that just hasn’t been kept up until now.

Aerobics Revolution plays about the same way: follow your friendly instructor as she steps on the pad and does motions, and do good to realize your weight loss dreams! To build upon the 8-bit classic, AR has a number of additional elements, such as more varied stretching during a session and a no doubt very welcome abillity to switch camera angles in front and behind the instructor, or swing the camera around freely with the analog stick on a second control pad.

Like in DDR, each aerobics session is capped off with a display of your results, including calories lost, with an overall rank from S to E. The accumulation of these results can be recorded to an in-game Diet Diary that shows your gradual rise or fall in calories and body fat percentage.

I’ll bet by now you’re thinking you can skip this one, huh? You’re claiming you bought a DDR pad to dance with, not dink around with 80s throwbacks. Or maybe you’re a purist, thinking that if the name doesn’t begin with "Dance Dance" you’re not going to buy it. Well, I have news for you: Aerobics Revolution has a full-fledged "DDR Mode", where you can stomp on the floor in the tried and true way. One big difference is that the songs in this mode are longer than in your everyday DDR game, so you’ll stay on the pad longer and legitimize your workout.

Although exercise and games seem like (and have been proven to be) total opposites that will never be fully joined in our vast cosmic tapestry, it’s good to know that Konami tries. Japan has seen far more fitness games than we have, but none attached to the powerful DDR franchise. When was the last time you shook your booty and had a hearty bowl of Special K afterwards, anyway? Ray Barnholt



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