ABBA You Can Dance Development Team Interview

ABBA You Can Dance Development Team Interview

ABBA You Can Dance Development Team Interview

Question: How did the idea for a dancing game about ABBA come about?

Just Dance and ABBA are both all about uniting people through their varied styles of music. Its fun and you can't help but dance when the games start. When we heard that there was an opportunity to create a new game with ABBA, we jumped at the chance to work with one of the most iconic pop groups ever.

Question: What are the new features? What makes ABBA You Can Dance different from other dancing titles?

ABBA You Can Dance brings all the fun you've come to expect from a Ubisoft dance title and more. We're most excited about our new Mini-Musical Mode. You'll perform as one of four characters through a story using ABBA's songs, set in the American 50s/60s. It's like playing through an actual musical.

Question: How do you freshen up a 30-year old band to make them feel current and modern?

ABBA is truly timeless - people of all ages dance to the songs and have a great time with ABBA. Along with other tracks, it's nearly a guarantee to hear Dancing Queen at any wedding or prom celebration.

Technically speaking, the choreography and visuals are key to making any song feel modern. What makes ABBA You Can Dance unique is that every map is an artistic creation. The art direction, music choice and choreography work together to bring a fresh new look and feel to every song. Each map and costume is designed to recreate ABBA's universe, what the band stands for and the energy that the particular song is evoking. ABBA You Can Dance is both a tribute to the band and guaranteed fun for all.

Question: What audience are you targeting?

Anyone who loves to dance and have fun! ABBA You Can Dance is the perfect game to play on your own, at a party with friends, with family sharing a laugh together, or with anyone willing to have fun dancing to timeless tracks. We have also spent a lot of time creating special bonuses and a real authentic feel to the game in order to please the aspiring musical stars out there.

Question: How did you manage to develop a game that will please ABBA's fans?

We made sure to honor ABBA's legacy by providing fans with exclusive content, videos, trivia, tributes and more. ABBA's fans are sure to love it.

Question: What is the tracklist?

As Good As New
Dancing Queen (two versions available, with different venues and choreography)
Does Your Mother Know
Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)
Head Over Heals
Hole In Your Soul
Honey, Honey
I'm A Marionette
I do, I do, I do, I do, I do
If It Wasn't For The Nights
Knowing Me, Knowing You
Lay All Your Love On Me
Mamma Mia
Money, Money, Money
People Need Love
Summer Night City
Super Trouper
Take A Chance On Me
The Winner Takes It All
When I Kissed The Teacher

Question: There is a huge variety of songs included in ABBA You Can Dance. How were these selected?

We've included the band's most famous tracks, such as Mamma Mia, Dancing Queen and Take A Chance On Me, as well as lesser-known jewels from ABBA's rich repertoire.

We decided to show the variety of their universe through diverse tunes, their aesthetics in-game and the different moods they set. For example, I'm A Marionette conveys a dramatic yet playful atmosphere, As Good As New is pure energy, and If It Wasn't For the Nights is full of funk.

Question: How was the choreography in the game developed? Who creates these for the game?

We worked with professional dance choreographers in charge of creating the best moves while keeping with the map concepts, the ABBA style and the mood of the songs. It has been a fully cooperative effort between them and our level designers, with the latter taking care of the immediate fun and accessibility of the choreography.

For ballads and slower tunes, which aren't necessarily easy to build choreography-wise, we came up with surprising concepts that convey unexpected yet strong and playful dance styles. This is certainly the case for The Winner Takes It All and its classical-inspired dancing style, which is brand new for a dancing game and emphasizes the song's dramatic tone.

Question: What studios are behind the development of ABBA You Can Dance?

The teams working on ABBA You Can Dance have expertise from The Experience and Just Dance franchises. This means that not only do they know how to satisfy the fans and pay tribute to artists, but they also have the technical knowledge for creating a great dancing game! They are experienced in pleasing the fans and bringing out the best vibes for everyone to enjoy dancing together.

It's a wonderful example of cooperation between different studios at Ubisoft: the teams from Paris, Bucharest, Montpellier and Pune have worked hand-in-hand to bring fans this visually stunning title that will take fans on stage and dancing the night away.

Question: To what extent did the original ABBA settings inspire the elements found in the game?

To create the game, the core team fully immersed themselves in the varied and rich world of ABBA, taking inspiration from live footage and TV shows, original music videos, anecdotes, and backstage pictures of the band.

During the course of making the game, we have heard, seen and read pretty much everything about ABBA!

We also tried to convey modernity and freshness through our backgrounds and costumes, by looking at new trends in video and light projection, stage design, etc. For instance, the Lay All Your Love On Me background artwork is a representation of the iconic pyramid and mountains from the Polar Music logo (ABBA's label), which was used as the cover album and stage decor of their Wembley 1979 tour, and is also representative of the iconic mountain ranges of Sweden.

Question: How were the costumes created?

We worked with costume designers, who reproduced ABBA's costumes as closely as possible using based on original photos and our instruction. Depending on the complexity of the fabrics and richness of details, each set of costumes took approximately one week to create.

The maps featuring original costumes are:
Knowing Me Knowing You
Lay All Your Love On Me
Mamma Mia

For the other costumes, we looked at current fashion styles in order to bring a fresh feel while staying true to ABBA's spirit.

Question: Any cool little surprises?

Well they are called surprises for a reason, but here's a little clue - be ready to dance along to some funky moves!

Question: What kind of moves will I find in ABBA You Can Dance?

We're proud to offer a game that will truly satisfy any kind of dancer! We conveyed the rich spirit of ABBA through our selection of dance moves, making ABBA You Can Dance a must have dancing game. Our choreography takes inspiration from pop of course, but you will also find moves inspired from rock'n'roll, funk, jazz and even classical dancing!

Question: Will there be any DLC?

No. ABBA You Can Dance offers the full experience from the moment you start playing.

Question: What is the release date?

ABBA You Can Dance is coming to all major retailers this November. Get it and share the laughs and good times with friends and family throughout the holiday season's gatherings.