Review by SaxMyster

"Rock Out With Guitar Hero!"

Introduction
Guitar Hero is a game made from the company “Red Octane”. Who haven't actually made much of a name for themselves as video game producers, as Guitar Hero is pretty much the only game that they have produced. The game is played by either pressing buttons on a Playstation 2 controller as they appear on the screen, or alternatively, by strumming notes on the strum bar whilst pressing the fret buttons in time with the notes as they appear on your screen. Anyway, before I start the review, here are some specs
- 1 or 2 Players
- This game requires a minimum of 204 KB Memory Card space.
- Analog Control compatible: analog sticks only (If you want to use your basic play station 2 controller)
- Optional Controller: SLEH-00049 (The actual guitar controller)

Gameplay- 10/10
This is where the game really does shine, when I first saw this game in magazines, I thought the gameplay would be on par with other music games such as Dance Dance Revolution and SingStar Party, games which didn't really appeal to me, but I was wrong. I would only play this game with the proper guitar controller, as it seems playing this game with a standard Playstation 2 controller defeats the object of this game! The guitar controller is fairly hard to explain but I will try anyway, it is a fairly light weight plastic guitar, it has a strum bar in the place you would play the strings on a standard guitar. On the neck on the guitar controller are fret buttons, and these are used to play notes in time with the strum bar. There is also a whammy bar on the guitar controller, it is situated below the whammy bar, and it is used to make longer notes sound…well different! Playing the guitar controller is just an unbelievable experience in gaming, it actually made me feel like I was an actual rock star!

This game consists of over 30 of the greatest rock songs of all-time, the soundtrack includes songs as made famous by such legendary artists as the Red Hot Chili Peppers, David Bowie, Boston, Sum 41, Ozzy Osbourne, Audioslave, White Zombie, Franz Ferdinand, and The Ramones. (note that the songs are performed by different people in the game, not by the actual artists, but they still sound very alike!).

The game has 4 difficulty levels (Easy, Medium, Hard, and Expert), I can manage to complete songs on Easy, Medium and Hard, but the Expert level is very, very challenging! The notes scroll down the screen so quickly it is very hard to keep up! And as a result, I felt a little dizzy for about 5 seconds. But the challenge makes this game really addictive, and as you progress through the game you can unlock new guitars, new people and new arenas

Sound - 10/10
As I have said, the songs are not performed by the original artists, despite this, I didn't actually know at first that the songs were performed by other people, they sound that similar! Although, most of these songs are fairly old, there still pretty good. Killer Queen and The Ace of Spades are some of my favourite songs in this game. Sound effects are only heard in the menus or when you screw up a note in the game. They work very nicely as well.

Graphics - 7/10
The graphics in this game are not really important, as you are concentrating on trying to hit notes when playing the songs. But the graphics are still what you would expect from a PlayStation 2 game. The characters and venues are nicely styled and all the band members are pretty good. The graphics won't exactly blow you away, but they do the job well and look good enough at the same time.

Conclusion- 9/10
This just falls short of a 10 in my opinion basically due to the graphics, and a few dodgy songs. But it is still a great game! And definitely one that you need in your collection. I managed to get this game on the cheap for £39.99 from www.amazon.co.uk, you would think that this is expensive for a Playstation 2 game, but remember that you are paying for the controller as well as the actual game. But generally this game retails for on the high streets for around £49.99.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 01/17/07


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