Zumba: Burn It Up – Review

Writer Freelance: Sunniva Elisabeth Stalsberg

Thanks to the release of Nintendo’s own Ring Fit Adventure, plenty of Nintendo Switch owners are now using their console as an essential part of their casual fitness program. Alongside the previously released Fitness Boxing and Just Dance, players now have another way to get in shape while playing a game: Zumba Burn It Up! but is it enough?

Name: Zumba Burn It Up
Developer: Kuju Entertainment
Publisher: 505 games
Platforms:  Switch
Reviewed on: Switch
Release Date: 19.November.2019
Acquired: A copy of this game was provided by a publisher for review purpose

Zumba should be familiar to those with an interest in fitness as it’s the exercise program created by Colombian dancer Alberto Pérez. This fun idea to dance away the pounds you got have been in many forms and adaptations the most known maybe the home DVDs. This game does not change that formula too much as you just pick up the joy controller and dance to the movements at the screen.

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The Good

The main way to play Burn It Up! is to take on the fitness classes. These range from relatively quick 15-minute sessions to 60-minute marathons. In total, there are 15 short classes, 10 30-minute classes, and six-hour-long ones. These only differ in the song intensity, some playlists are low intensity while others expect players to dance the entire time. I preferred doing the shorter classes as I found the dances to be a good supplemental workout rather than something to base my entire afternoon routine around.

The other ways that Zumba Burn It Up! turns your workout into a game is by providing a number of fitness challenges. There are daily goals to meet and more long-term ones to finish via weekly fitness challenges. It measures how much the player has worked out via a vague energy metric. These are worthwhile additions as they give everyone a goal to work toward.

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The Bad 

The only real issue is that Joy-Con isn’t the greatest way to measure dancing. Sure, it works better than using a non-interactive DVD that can’t grade the player at all, but it’s only measuring arm movements. It’s generally accurate, but there were definitely points where I did the movement and it just didn’t register in-game and other times when I knew I could slack off a bit and not be penalized since it wasn’t going to pick up on my leg movements when I’m moving my hand’s back-and-forth. If you view Burn It Up purely as a game, then it can certainly be played like one, and there are shortcuts that devalue the fitness aspect.

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Verdict

By itself, it’s hard to really recommend the Switch version of Zumba Burn It Up! The tracking isn’t great and it’s not something you’d ever want to spend hours with. However, as a part of a greater workout regimen, it certainly has its place.

Pros

  • In-game goals are helpful
  • Over 30 fun songs
  • Plenty of different classes to choose from

Cons

  • No real calorie-burning tracking
  • Not a ton of variety
  • Tracking can be hit and miss

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