It’s be over 50 years since Guitar Hero first burst onto… what? Oh. It’s been 5 years?!? Yes. It’s only been five years but Guitar Hero is on it’s 50th editio–what? Oh there’s been how many? Oh… anyway. There’s also Rock Band as well, their 3rd one is coming soon and their Beatles game makes them have …um and… for Guitar Hero this is the… who cares? It’s more great strumming and party fun.
Music games like this are among the first games I recommend for parties, families, and family parties. Grab and instrument or the mic and play along with real rock n’ roll while feeling like you belong in a band. These games don’t “simulate” playing music (well, Rock Band 3 is going to try too), but they are fun, and Guitar Hero offers a few new things to make it interesting to jaded gamers.
First off, 90 new songs and that’s amazing because, between the two games and all the downloadable songs, it feels like every rock and roll classic has been touched (ok,ok, except for all the hold outs like Led Zeppelin and your favorite band). The other new thing is the addition of an EXPERT+ mode. Since I have friends who find EXPERT easy, this is a good thing. The third new idea is a quest mode. Narrated by Gene Simmons you get to play rock to destroy the evil machine who… blah-blah-blah. This mode is… well, some people will like it. It’s not perfect, but new ideas are at this point, needed. Unfortunately for Guitar Hero, modes like this only serve reinforce the (accurate) perception that Rock Band is the more serious game for rock lovers while GH is more about rock mythology. Again this is good, it keeps the franchises distinct.
The game is T-Teen, which is about right considering the lyrics, themes, and some violence in the cutscenes, but this is nothing a kid already rocking out to classic sex, drugs, n’ metal music can’t handle. Family interest may vary, this isn’t a casual addition to the game, but earlier versions of the game (and its rival series and especially Lego Rock Band) are more family friendly. But if you’ve got a warrior of rock in your house? This will keep em’ happy while introducing them to 90 songs they may never hear otherwise.