Critics' Corner

 

,XGuitar Hero III (PS3)

 

“Guitar Hero”, a name now world famous in the game industry and almost a synonym for Rhythm games.. at least the awesome rocking ones.

Everybody reading this has probably played one of the Guitar Hero games or has at least an idea of how they work but for the ones that don’t know let me explain.

 

Guitar Hero is a rhythm based game , meaning that you tap buttons with the rhythm of the music. Guitar Hero’s Gimmick is a guitar shaped controller you get with the full package.
The guitar controller has 5 “fret” buttons a strum “flipper” and a whammy bar.

In the game you see colored icons (notes) stroll down the screen (the “fret board”) and the object is to hold the same colored button and hit (strum) the flipper when the colored icon reaches a horizontal line on the bottom of the screen.

By holding down the correct buttons and timing the strums right you will seemingly “create” the many guitar riffs in the game.

Now as you hit notes your “rock meter” rises and the more it rises the better the crowd likes you and the more you ..”rock”, however if you start to miss notes the meter will decline into the evil, EVIL red zone in which the crowd despises you and thinks you more or less suck. Now when the meter reaches the bottom its game over for you and the crowd lets you know by booing you off the stage filling your hart with shame. If you keep hitting notes without missing one your “multiplier” will raise which basically (if you don’t know this shame on you) “Multiply” your score by the number the multiplier is showing. (Who would’ve thought it eh?)
During the game some series of notes will have a star shape around them hit these series of notes and you will receive star power. There are a couple of bars that show you how much “star power” you have and when half of them are full they will turn blue and a message will tell you “star power ready”. You use your star power by lifting your guitar end vertically. During this time your rock meter will rise greater with every note you strum and your multiplier will be doubled.

This is pretty much the concept of Guitar Hero, sounds simple enough and let me tell you, it is.

 

The gameplay is surprisingly easy to get into but on the harder difficulty levels the Guitar Hero games are notorious for their difficulty.
On the easy difficulty setting you start off by using only three out of the five fret buttons with the notes being les frequent and moving slower down the screen .With every increasing difficulty level the amount of notes is increased and the speed at which they arrive increases exponentially, also every difficulty level one more fret is added (easy-hard) with expert being the exception since you’re already using all the fret buttons.
Now when you’re able to play on the harder difficulty settings there are certain “advanced techniques” available to use which are the “hammer on” and the “pull off”.

The Hammer on and the Pull off are basically ways of hitting the notes without having to strum each individual note and only hitting the frets buttons with the right timing. This technique however can only be used when the notes follow each other in fast succession and when the notes have a shining effect added to them.
IN the lower difficulty settings you will hardly ever be able to use this and when it’s possible you probably won’t because it would most likely mess up your performance but on the higher difficulty settings it is a must. Without these techniques you’ll find some songs impossible to “pull off” so you will just have to “hammer on” till you have these techniques mastered.

 

The graphics In the game are nothing to impressive the crow looks like they’re partying at the blur fest 2000 and the back up members from the band (everyone except you and the singer) have shoddy animation and seem to be lacking a good chunk of polygons.

However the animating and graphics on the singer and guitarist are done well enough and the finger movements of the guitarist can be quite impressive when the camera zooms in on the guitarist. The greatest goal a rhythm goal must achieve graphics wise is a good clear view everything you need to know, and it achieves that with great success.

Everything is in plain view and is clear to see and thanks to the power of HD very sharp. Some people have complained that the messages telling you about your note streak and star power are too obvious and may distract you long enough to mess up your game but I say those people have the focus of an 8 year old retarded toddler.

 

The music off course is top notch with over 70 songs ranging from all kinds of rock with famous songs from the likes of “The Rolling Stones” , “Kiss” and “Guns ‘n Roses”.

Off course with such a great amount of songs there’s bound to be something for everyone and there are also more obscure songs and if you’re lucky (I know I was) you might actually find a band you’ll really like by playing some of the songs unknown to you.
Off course no game can be complete without downloadable content nowadays and Guitar Hero happily jumps on the bandwagon. The amount of downloadable content is reasonable even though “Rock Band” is doing a better job of it you can’t complain because the original set list is so good already. (Except that with the blu-ray discs it could hold so much more songs.. oops there I go complaining, guess you can complain)

 

The game modes are pretty much the same as the as the previous Guitar Hero 1 & 2 (and rock the 80’s… sure why not) which include Quick play (wonder what that is), a career mode (also playable as co-op), a versus mode and a training mode.

The biggest difference between GHIII and the other installments is the online mode (for the playstation brand at least..) and the battle mode.

 

The battle mode is pretty much you playing a song against a “boss” character , instead of picking up starpower you pick up power ups which you can use by lifting your guitar to hinder your opponent’s progress. You effectively have to drain the opponents rock meter by strategically (and I use that term lightly) using the power ups so he misses a bunch of notes. This mode is fun for a while but at least against the A.I you figure out reasonably quickly that you just need to survive till the end of the song with 3 power ups (max amount you can save) and use them whilst the opponent is doing his “death drain” which is basically an insane amount of notes in quick succession which will “drain” your rock meter. But since the notes follow each other so quickly if you use your power ups then it just means he misses a lot of notes thus draining is rock meter fairly quickly…at least before he drains yours if timed well)

Now online mode has different modes which include all of the regular game modes (yes even co-op career which is awesome) and all the modes also available in the versus mode.

Which is “Face Off” in which both players choose their own difficulty setting, “Pro face off” in which both players must use the same difficulty setting and off course the new “Battle mode”.
Finding a match online can be quite difficult especially if you want to play a certain difficulty and the game is plagued by players that quit halfway during a song when they are losing, however the online mode is still brilliant. It adds a great deal of lifespan to the game and it’s just awesome to play with some friends to see who is just the best (even though actually playing against each other in real life > on the internet play).

The best part of the online mode however is the ability to link it to a www.guitarhero.com profile so all of your stats (yes all of them) are viewable online on any web browser anywhere. It’s a great way to share your stats with friends or compare them somewhere with no access to the game. (Say at school, it’s boring anyway)

All in all this is a great game and a welcome addition to the Guitar hero series.

If you’ve never played a Guitar Hero game this is a great place to start since the difficulty has been toned down compared to the second part.
And if you’ve already played a previous installment ..come one who are you kidding you want more, and don’t worry “Through the Fire and the Flames” makes up for the lower difficulty setting.

 

Graphics – 6/10

Gameplay – 8/10

Lifespan – 9/10

Music- 9/10

Story – 3/10

 

8.5

Buy


The_Tombo-Ps3 team

 


Comments

Not The_Tombo

Sun, 06 Apr 2008 08:58:36

This is the bestest review I ever read!

This man is so charismatic and awesome that even though I'm not gay I would totally sleep with him.

 

pill92

Sun, 06 Apr 2008 08:59:13

okay dude im sure he'll love to hear that lol

 

ZeForgotten

Sun, 06 Apr 2008 09:55:03

That's a nice review.
Some trouble with the editing on it.
But basically that's what a review should be like.

But word of advice, make the text of the Scores the same size as the text in the Review and just make it Bold, that will work so much better than the "IN YOUR FACE!" attitude it brings now.

But props' to you tombo

 

diane

Mon, 07 Apr 2008 07:06:48

Nice job. Very intereting review.

 



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