I’m not the sort of person who enjoys spending time at the local pubs on karaoke night – far too many people for my liking – but I do like to sing in the comfort of my own home. It’s been a long time since I’ve actually played a karaoke game though. Who needs to dish out for a full-priced game when YouTube is full of free karaoke, after all? That’s what I thought, anyway. I guess I’d forgotten the appeal of such games. It is much more satisfying to see your score rack up, which is something you don’t get with YouTube, and I have fond memories of playing Lips on the Xbox 360, even if the microphones were a nightmare to set up, so I thought I’d give Let’s Sing a go. Let’s Sing 2021 is the latest in the series of karaoke games developed by Voxler and is available for PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch.
The premise is simple enough. You sing along to the words on the screen and try to stay in tune with varying degrees of success. It’s not a new concept by any means and doesn’t reward how you sound so much as it does pitch and timing. Netflix’s recent show Sing On is a prime example of this, with the best singers not always getting the recognition they should. That being said, it is still a whole load of fun.
There’s a lot to sink your teeth into with Let’s Sing 2021 thanks to the variety of modes available. There’s something for everyone, really, whether you want to play alone or with friends.
Classic Mode is the one you’d most expect from a karaoke game – you pick your song and you sing along, either by yourself or with a friend. It’s pretty simple, but if you want a more exciting duet experience, the Feat. mode is the way to go. You can sing with a friend or the artist themselves. Some songs suited this mode better than others. As much as I love “I Just Can’t Wait to be King” from The Lion King, it just doesn’t work. It’s all well and good if you’re given Simba’s parts, but if you’re unlucky enough to get stuck with hornbill Zazu’s part, which is more like talking than singing, you might struggle to get points. In addition to the Classic and Feat. Modes, there are also World Contest, Mixtape and Let’s party modes – all of which you’ll be familiar with if you’ve played previous entries in the series.
Let’s Sing 2021 does add something new to the series though, Legendary Mode, which is designed to add a sense of progression to the game. The avatars of the game dish out challenges with increasing difficulty as you progress. It was a welcome addition that added some incentive to play what would otherwise be the sort of game I would only really pick up and play every now and again. I felt like I was actually accomplishing something, even if all I was doing was singing into my phone.
I just mentioned singing into my phone, and that’s one of the biggest selling points of the Let’s Sing franchise. It’s accessible. Something that has always put me off karaoke games is the equipment needed to play them. Not everyone has access to microphones, and while the physical copy of the game comes with one microphone, unless you wanted to splash out on another, normally you’d be restricted to single-player. Fortunately, VoxlerGames has developed a companion app called Let’s Sing Mic, which means that anyone can play as long as they have access to a smartphone. The app itself doesn’t have the best of reviews, with a lot of people complaining about being unable to connect, but personally, I haven’t experienced any problems. A unique code is displayed on the screen once you’ve chosen a song. All you have to do is type the code into the app, sing into your phone mic, and then you’re set.
The only real problem I encountered was that the mic was a little too sensitive. I’m not sure if this is true of the official mics or just the mobile app, which is what I used, but I found that it would sometimes pick up the singer themselves coming from my TV or whoever I was singing with, so my points would go up a little even if I wasn’t singing.
The base game comes with 30 songs to choose from featuring artists like Ariana Grande, Imagine Dragons, Linkin Park, Billie Eilish and more with a mixture of current hits and older classics, so you’re bound to find at least a couple you know. As for the songs you don’t know? Well, the beauty of this sort of game is that you learn them pretty quickly. Unfortunately, while the tracklist offered a nice variety of songs, in terms of quantity, it was a little lacking. 30 base songs aren’t bad, but chances are you might get bored pretty quickly. Still, it is pretty much expected with any sort of music game that there will be plenty of DLC content, and Let’s Sing 2021 is no exception. There are already a number of DLC packs available to purchase, individually or as part of the season pack, and chances are we’ll see more pop up in the future, so there’s plenty to keep you occupied.
Let’s Sing 2021 has areas in which it could improve, namely its app and potentially a more comprehensive song list. Despite this, it’s a solid karaoke game that not only refines the game modes from previous titles in the series but adds something new in the form of Legendary Mode. It’s a lot of fun in short bursts, especially if you can rope some friends into playing it, so if you’re a fan of karaoke, you should definitely give it a go.
Publisher: Koch Media
Platforms: Xbox One, PC, Switch
Release Date: 13th November 2020
Gaming Respawn’s copy of Let’s Sing 2021 was provided by the publisher.