"Dancing With the Stars" viewers can now samba, jive, and tango with the professional dancers from the show in a free new online game. Dancing with the Stars: Keep Dancing allows fans to create their own avatars — complete with hot-to-trot dance outfit and show makeup — pick a partner, and compete to take home the coveted Mirror Ball trophy. The game was choreographed by two 'DWTS' regulars, Kym Johnson and Tristan MacManus, who shared some behind-the-scenes scoop on the making of the game.
[Related: ABC Plans All-Star 'Dancing With the Stars']
"Everybody loves 'Dancing With the Stars' and now they can be one of the stars on 'Dancing with the Stars,' Johnston tells Yahoo! TV. "It's very interactive. You create your own avatar. You're actually dancing with one of us. You're doing the steps you see on the show. You're in the game. So it's just a lot of fun."
Johnson and MacManus came up with all the dance moves featured in the game within a period of a few days, then they went to the studio, donned motion capture suits, and filmed the choreographed steps over the course of a week, which you can see in the clip below. The experience was vastly different than what the dancers do on their ABC reality series each week. "We had to wear full-on onesies — like scuba diving gear," says MacManus. "It was very uncomfortable. Skintight trousers. A skintight top. A swimming cap-type hat. Then I had on my dance shoes."
Although initially "really claustrophobic," Johnson said she later got used to the suit, which made her feel a bit "like an action hero." The Velcro sensors on the suits, used to capture their movements, presented another problem. "We kept getting stuck together," Johnson laughs. "When we were dancing together, doing tricks and everything, they ended up coming off on each other and we were getting stuck." Adds MacManus: "I'm pretty sure we broke a lot of equipment we shouldn't have."
Both Johnson and MacManus are thrilled with the end result of their hard work — and happy to share the realistic dance experience with their fans. "I have had some great people supporting me since I started the show," MacManus says. "Unfortunately I can't dance with everyone who has asked me, so hopefully this gives people a little opportunity to dance with me in some capacity."
You'll get to see both dancers back for the May 22 finale of the show, which they recently started rehearsing for, and they shared their predictions for the big winners. "It's a really tough season — everyone is really good," says Johnson. "It could be anyone who takes the trophy home. Cheryl [Burke] is a good friend of mine so I love her and Will [Levy]. But Katherine [Jenkins] and Mark [Ballas] – I think they've been great since day one. I love all of them though. It's going to be a tough finale." MacManus, who did a three-person routine with Katherine and Mark on May 7, is also in their corner. "For effort alone and hours alone and work alone, you could say they should smash it."