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DJ Rivals

For: iPhone   Also on: Android

Broken record

Product: DJ Rivals | Publisher: Booyah | Format: iPhone | Genre: Location- based, Multiplayer, Music/ Rhythm | Players: 1 | Version: Europe | App version: 1.0.0
DJ Rivals iPhone, thumbnail 1
Spinning the wheels of steel might seem like a glamorous profession when you’re marooned on the sweaty dance floor, mesmerised by the talents of your local nightclub’s resident turntable fiend, but if DJ Rivals is to be believed there’s an awful lot of hard slog involved and little reward at the end of it.

This spin-off (pun intended) of the popular Facebook game Nightclub City has you trying to rid the planet of the evil Bland Corp., a sinister organisation repressing talented musicians and creating a nation of faceless drones to replace them.

Think of it as The X Factor but with even more annoying acts.

One-hit wonder

The story is an attempt to bestow DJ Rivals with a sense of purpose, but it’s so wafer-thin it doesn’t take long for it to crumble entirely. What you’re left with is a thoroughly unappealing role-playing rhythm game, and one which relies too heavily on repetition and the seemingly endless acquisition of virtual wealth.

There’s a plentiful supply of items to purchase, including new equipment, outfits, records, and skills. You earn the cash by battling other DJs in a turn-based contest on the decks. This is easily the most interesting element of the game, but it too becomes bogged down in repetition quickly.

Your attacks are unleashed by interacting with your deck and usually involve tapping to the beat or scratching your turntable. Weak attacks are easy to execute, whereas the more powerful ones require complex finger work.

Rhythm of the night

There are missions to complete and bosses to battle, but aside from that DJ Rivals offers little to capture the imagination. In fact, it feels much like a basic extension of Nightclub City - it’s even possible to link the two games so the virtual currency you earn is carried across.

The ability to use GPS when playing on an iPhone to visit locations near to you is neat, but all it really does is put a different name above each building, while the actual on-screen images remain the same.

Online play is also possible, and playing against human opponents does at least grant DJ Rivals a social element. However, the battle sections are so painfully limited it’s hard to extract any real enjoyment.

Should you be a fan of questionable qualities of Nightclub City then DJ Rivals will appeal immensely, but if you prefer a little more meat on the bone, look elsewhere. DJ Rivals makes a lot of noise, but it barely scrapes into the top 40.
DJ Rivals
Reviewer photo
Damien McFerran | 28 March 2011
Repetitive action and a largely vacuous storyline do nothing to disguise the fact that DJ Rivals is essentially an advert for its Facebook-based big brother Nightclub City
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