Karaoke. An essential part of any hen night, the Thursday night draw down at your local boozer and, thanks to consoles, an inexpensive night in for those homebodies that like to belt out a tune/annoy your neighbours. While singing games were plentiful during the PS3/Xbox 360/Wii days, they’re somewhat of a rarity these days – apart from the Let’s Sing series. For the past few years, RavensCourt have almost singlehandedly kept the genre alive on consoles with their annual instalments, with their latest entry, ‘Let’s Sing 2019’ releasing back in October. We’ve a varying degree of vocal prowess here at FingerGuns from surprisingly good (Rossko) (EXCUSE me?! – R) to astonishingly bad (Me) but it fell to me this year to give you a critical review of Let’s Sing 2019 and despite my terrible performances on it (no seriously, I hope the footage of me singing Barbie Girl never reaches the internet), it’s a barrel of laughs for the whole family. At least with microphones…
If you’ve not played a singing game before, the set-up here is similar to that of a karaoke machine but with a few integral differences. You choose your song from the 30 that are available (more on that in a second) and then sing along to the official version of the song (there’s no cheap knock off versions here) with the lyrics presented along the bottom of the screen.
Unlike a karaoke machine though, you’re scored on how in tune you sing (or mumble – you’re scored on the pitch rather than the words). To help with that, bubbles containing the words cycle across the screen from right to left, overlaying the music video for the song. The higher the bubble is on the screen, the higher the pitch of note you need to hit. For every bubble you sing the right note for, you’re awarded points and if you consistently sing the right note for the bubbles, you’re score starts to multiply, starting at X1 and heading all the way to X5 (and maybe higher, this is the highest we’ve managed to get it). There’s also something called ‘Golden Notes’ in Let’s Sing 2019 which are notoriously difficult notes to hit without practice. Hit these notes and maintain them for the duration and you’re awarded a big point boost. At the end of the song, your score is tallied up and is ranked from Bronze (worst) to Diamond (best). These scores are then kept on a local scoreboard for you to try and beat and are compared with everyone else who has played the game on online leader boards (for those hyper competitive singers out there).
Each and every time you sing a song in Let’s Sing 2019, you earn experience which is added to a levelling up system. The better you sing, the more experience you earn. As you level up, you’re granted access to new colourful avatars (little animated characters that sing when you do on screen), each of which represent their own musical genre as well as additional features in game modes.
As for Game Modes, Let’s Sing 2019 has a number of them. The ‘Classic Mode’ returns, which is where you pick a single song and rack up as high as score as possible. Earning high scores in this mode unlocks alternative versions of songs too. Then there’s the new Mix tape ‘2.0’ mode, which jumbles together 5 randomly chosen songs for you to tackle. Alternatively, you can choose your own 5 song mix tape from the 30 song strong library and sing them back to back. Lastly, there’s the Featuring mode, which gives you another score to be weary of – Compatibility. Sing in tune with another player and you’ll score big. All of these modes can be player in solo, with or without a computer helper or in multiplayer.
As for the songs themselves, the millage of Let’s Sing 2019 will vary depending on your tastes. Here’s the full track list;
Bruno Mars ft. Cardi B – Finesse (remix)
Zedd ft. Maren Morris & Grey – The Middle
Rita Ora – Anywhere
Clean Bandit ft. Zara Larsson – Symphony
Jonas Blue ft. William Singe – Mama
Portugal. The Man – Feel It Still
Starley – Call On Me (Ryan Riback Remix)
Everything But The Girl – Missing (Todd Terry Club Mix)
Bon Jovi – Livin’ On A Prayer
Auli’i Cravalho – How Far I’ll Go
Shawn Mendes – There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back
Dua Lipa – New Rules
Nicky Jam & J Balvin – X
Queen – I Want It All
Lorde – Green Light
Michael Schulte – You Let Me Walk Alone
Sheryl Crow – All I Wanna Do
DNCE – Cake By The Ocean
Tom Walker – Leave a Light On
No Doubt – Don’t Speak
ABBA – Mamma Mia
Lady Gaga – Perfect Illusion
Martin Garrix & Dua Lipa – Scared To Be Lonely
Bruno Mars – 24K Magic
Lou Bega – Mambo No. 5
Bananarama – Cruel Summer
Passenger – Let Her Go
4 Non Blondes – What’s Up?
Kygo & Selena Gomez – It Ain’t Me
Felix Jaehn ft. Jasmine Thompson – Ain’t Nobody (Loves Me Better)
It’s a really eclectic mix of old school anthems (Mamma Mia, Livin’ on a Prayer, What’s Up?), modern day smash hits (Perfect Illusion, 24K Magic, There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back) and cheesy party songs (the surprisingly difficult Mambo No. 5). There’s a little something for everyone there and while I personally don’t think it’s as strong a line up as that in Let’s Sing 18 (I miss my “Proclaimers – I’m Gonna Be” that I could absolutely smash, note for note) my Wife and kids much prefer this line up.
If those 30 songs aren’t enough for you, the Platinum edition of Let’s Sing 2019 comes with a few additional DLC packs (each of which can be purchased separately for £3.99). There’s 2 Part Classic Volumes, each of which include 5 songs like Queen’s ‘We Will Rock You’, A-Ha’s ‘Take On Me’ and Madness’s ‘Our House’, all of which are absolute bangers. On top of this is the Legendary Songs pack which adds another 5 songs to the library including the brutal ‘I will Survive’ and Lady Gaga’s ‘Bad Romance’. But there’s more – the ‘Best of 90’s’ and ‘Best of 80’s’ Song packs, each with 5 songs, add the likes of Wham!’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go –Go’, All Saint’s ‘Never Ever’ and *sigh* Aqua’s insanely difficult ‘Barbie Girl’ to the mix. Lastly, there’s the Chart Hit Song pack, which loads up 5 recent chart toppers including the Clean Bandit’s ‘Tears’. With all of these purchased, the library is upped to an impressive 65 songs total and while it’s still missing a lot of classics from previous games, it’s still an impressive collection.
As for microphones, Let’s Sing 2019 supports any USB microphone that’s compatible with the PS4, so if you’ve got the ones bundled with the Let’s Sing games a few years ago, you can plug them in and away you go. Alternatively, you can download the Let’s Sing Mic app on to your mobile and use that instead. This however, throws up a few problems. The mobile option doesn’t seem to pick up as wide a variety of notes as USB microphones do, often seen in a lower score than when we played with microphones, and randomly, the connection between the console and the mobile would regularly cut out, booting you to the pause screen with a request to reconnect your device. This happened on multiple mobile phones across multiple play sessions.
The base Let’s Sing 2019 package is a sold, feature filled singing game with an eclectic yet mildly disappointing mix of music that’s best played with Microphones because of issues with the mobile app. It’s a shame that so many of the more iconic songs have been reserved for the DLC packs, making the Platinum version of this game the best/more expensive option for the game. At the current price though (£49.99), it’s still less than 80 pence per song, which is a good deal. If you’re looking for a night in with a group of friends, a bottle of wine and a sing-song, Let’s Sing 2019 is peerless right now. Just make sure you have some microphones handy.
Let’s Sing 2019 is available now on Wii, Wii U, Switch and PS4 (Review version).
Disclaimer: In order to review this game, we received a review copy of the Platinum Edition in order to complete the review. Pleasd see our review policy for more information.