Review by Ninjujitsu
"Ah finally, a fun rythym game with GOOD MUSIC"
Long have we rhythm gamers, since the first Dance Dance Revolution, had to suffer through games with a horrible selection of music. I tolerated "Like a Virgin", and I even begrudgingly dance danced my way through "In The Navy" and "YMCA", but it was when a Britney Spears song appeared in my favorite rhythm game that I drew the line. I refuse to dance like a school girl! (Those days of humiliation are over, and I'm moving on with my life! >_>)
So tired of the same songs from DDR Extreme, we avid rhythm gamers are left hung out to dry. We sit back and listen to our alternative rock, our metal, and brood. Why can't their be a game with GOOD MUSIC for us? What's this you say? "Guitar Hero?" A game where you use a guitar for a controller (it even comes with a sticker sheet, let the creative genius FLOW) and rock out to such melodies as "Iron Man" by Black Sabbath, "Smoke on the Water" by Deep Purple, "Spanish Castle Magic" by Jimi Hendrix, and (I'm throwing this one in seeing as how they're my favorite band, BIAS FOR THE WIN) "Stellar" by Incubus?
"IT'S TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE," you scream frantically, your voice inadvertently mocking that of an eight year old boy. Ohoho, no it isn't little man. It's here. This is the REAL Revolution. Guitar Hero...Hero...Revo--Revolution. Well it could have been called that but it isn't. But it could've been!
Enough rambling, allow me to get on with this insane review:
Guitar Hero is a rythm game played with a guitar-esque controller that features five different color fret buttons, a strum "bar" (it's more like a switch), and a whammy bar. When playing a song, displayed at the bottom will be five colored targets representing your fret buttons. In a five lane contraption, a note will come down form the top of the screen towards these targets, and when they align you must hold the corresponding fret button down, and strum. There are streaming notes which require you hold the fret button down after you strum. This is where the whammy bar comes in, as you can mix a little wer-a-werrrr in by pushing up and down on it adding your own flavor.
There's also "Star Power" which builds up by nailing notes in the shape of stars in a combo. If you miss a star shaped note in a combo, the combo ends and you get another chance later on down the song. The "object" is to keep the crowd entertained. There is a meter in the bottom right which will indicate if you're making the crowd pretty angry, playing alright, or playing good. Nailing notes in a combo will give you a score multiplier and thus make the crowd happy, and using star power automatically boosts your multiplier up higher, enabling higher scores than would be without.
There is a career mode, a multi-player mode, a quick play and a tutorial. Each of the first three mode offer four difficulty settings: easy, medium, hard, and expert. The career mode involves you creating a band and working up your fame and making money to unlock songs, two characters, new guitars, skins, and videos. Seperate guitar controls are not currently being sold, but if you and a friend have bought the game, you can head up against each other on your favorite song, and it will divide the song amongst the two of you. Quick play is just that; select a song and see if you can beat it.
The tutorial is very brief and is only useful to learn the advanced techniques: hammer-ons and pull-offs, which WILL be necessary to beat some of the songs on hard and expert.
All in all, this game's an instant classic, and should definitely be picked up by those who like playing guitar, rhythm games, video games in general, or just like having fun. The only reason I give it a nine is because it only has thirty well known songs, and the rest are all by underground artists. I would have preferred a much larger list, but the game is still great.
So go pick it up.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 11/10/05
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