Review by KFantasy017

"The power of rock compells you!"

Good old Guitar Hero. I remember the first day I played this. I had just gotten done with a midterm exam, and a friend of mine wanted to know if I wanted to hang out, and maybe play some Guitar Hero. The game looked cool, and I figured it wouldn't hurt to try it. So we got the game, brought it to my house, and hooked it up. That moment lost my the next few months of my life.

The game is addictive. You'll start out on easy mode, playing with just Green, Red, and Yellow, hitting maybe 1/10 of the notes in the song. Even then, the game can be challenging to those just starting out. When I first started, I believe I failed Heart Shaped Box on Easy, which many of you more experienced players will probably have a good laugh with. It's all about practicing, though. Within a month, I was playing on Expert mode, nailing the toughest solos. Most people have a lot of difficulty moving up a difficulty, but the great part about Guitar Hero II is that you're going to be playing a lot, so you're getting better and better without realizing it, and eventually you'll move up through the difficulties, asking yourself how you ever thought that Expert was hard.

The gameplay is simple enough, despite how addictive it is. You play using a controller shaped as a guitar. You have a start button to pause the game, a select button that's only purpose is to activate your Star Power, a strum bar to play each note, a whammy bar to change the sound of the extended notes, and five colored buttons that serve as frets. The only buttons you'll really ever need are the strum bar, and the five frets. The rest are just for fun or getting a higher score.

On the screen will be a guitar neck, and notes will come down the screen that correspond with the colored fret buttons. To play the note, you press down on the fret button, and strum the strum bar in rhythm with the notes as they appear on screen, changing your fingering on the fret board with each note. When you play on Easy, the notes come at you slowly, and you only need to use 3 of the 5 fret buttons. On medium they come at you a little faster, and you now have to use the fourth fret button. On hard, you have to use all five fret buttons, and the notes come even faster. On Expert, the notes come at you extremely fast, and you're playing 10 times the amount of notes you were playing when you started on Easy.

It sounds boring and repetitive, but you have to play the game to understand just how fun that really is. Going through the game, playing some of your favorite songs, and nailing the toughest of solos is really some of the most fun I've had in a long time. I couldn't put the game down at all unless I absolutely had to, and the only reason I stopped is because I played the game so long, my PS2 actually broke from the game. Now, while I don't recommend playing it THAT much, you'll find yourself to be playing this game an awful lot as well.

The main part of any Guitar Hero game is the soundtrack, and Guitar Hero II delivers. From the classic rock sounds of Aerosmith to the thrash metal riffs of Megadeth, there's something in this game for everyone. The main setlist is composed of legendary rock songs that most will know and love. For those of you that don't know a lot of the songs in the game, you're in for a nice treat, as the songs in here are all great.

As you play the game and complete songs, you earn money that can be used to by more songs, new guitars, etc. The bonus songs aren't all great. Let's be honest. Who here actually enjoyed Yes We Can! or Red Lottery? There are quite a few gems in there that are more than worth it. Push Push (Lady Lightning) and Gemini are some of my favorites in the game, and Jordan will make you want to rip out your hair for having the most difficult solo you'll ever play. All in all, the soundtrack doesn't disappoint anyone, and is extremely fun to play, as well as listen to.

If you haven't played Guitar Hero II yet, you really don't know what you're missing out on. The game is fun, addictive, and a great time killer. The soundtrack is amazing, and everyone can have a good time playing this game.


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 08/22/07, Updated 08/31/07

Game Release: Guitar Hero II (w/ Guitar) (US, 11/07/06)


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