Review by wolverinefan

"A very fun game for people who play the guitar and for those that don't"

I love rhythm games. No idea when I really go into them but I tend to buy most of them these days. Be it the new DDR or Karaoke Revolution.... Okay, that one isn't a true rhythm game but Party did have Sing & Dance mode. A lot of people have claimed that Guitar Hero is THE must own rhythm game? Well, I can't confirm if it's THE best but it's very good. Read on!

You're a guitarist for an up and coming rock band. Start off doing small shows and ending up doing huge concerts. Simple plot guide line which no substance but it's a rhythm game so no real need for a story. It's nice that they did try I guess.

The graphics in the game are rather nice. There are 8 or 10 playable characters. All look different. Nice character models, much better than the ones in the Karaoke games. Each character has their own rhythm board which is nice, I really liked Death's. You can alter guitars ect. So the graphics are nice, the notes are clearly colored but orange looks too much like red for my liking.

The sound in the game is of course great. The songs are all covers but for the most part they sound good. Most of the songs are rock but a lot of the hidden songs are kind of pop-ish. The game features Panthera, Ozzy, ACDC ect. A really nice selection and even I had heard of half of the songs and I'm not that big into rock music. Sound effects are decent. Hit the wrong note and it sounds like you hit a wrong note ect. Very simple.

The control in the game is a mixed bag. First of all the game comes with a guitar controller but you can also play with a normal PS2 controller. It's kind of hard to describe the guitar controller. It works like a guitar so if you've played one before you should be right at home. I found it took me a while to get the hang of it but it was very responsive. The PS2 controller is also very easy. The four shoulder buttons act as the first four colored buttons. L2 = green, L1 = red, R1 = yellow, and R2 = green. Now, the only problem is that orange is on X which is kind of out of the way but orange doesn't appear until Hard mode. I found that using the PS2 controller really wore it out quickly as the last songs on Normal require quick button presses. My poor R2 button kept popping....

Have you played Frequency or Amplitude? If so you will have no trouble playing this game. Think of a long solid bar strolling down the screen at you. There are 5 lines on it, one for each color. At the bottom of this are circles. When a colored circles and when a dot hits that you just need to hit that button. It's very simple but it offers a lot of fun. Easy mode is great for beginners and will help you get comfortable with the controller. Each venue has 5 songs, you only need to complete 4 of those except in the final venue of each mode requires you to finish all 5 songs.

Now, when you start normal you will notice that the shop is open. This setting and on offers the final venue. Now, when you finish a gig, depending on your review rating you will get money. Use the money in the shop to get new guitars, characters, making of videos, songs (18 unlock able songs total, brining the count to 48). Things you buy are only good for that mode which kind of sucks but oh well. The game keeps track of your scores and ratings and number of songs that you've finished.

I mentioned the unlockables above. there are some fun codes like big head and what not. There is also multiplayer but I wasn't able to try that out due to second guitars not for sale but from what I understand it's two things are on the screen for the same song and whoever has the highest score at the end wins. A nice addition WOULD have been online play but sadly the game doesn't have any. Oh well....

Is this the best rhythm game ever? No but it is VERY good. Lots of songs, extras, two players and a cool controller. It is a bit pricey but there are sales for them going on right now. I do hope that I can find another controller at some point because my friends actually like playing this game which is very rare, I do think that Frequency and Amplitude is a smidge better due to the online play which really does add a lot of replay value but Guitar hero feels like a more solid game and has a better song listing.

Story - 3/10
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 9/10
Control - 9/10
Game Play - 10/10
Replay Value - 9/10

Final Score - 9/10

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 02/23/06

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