I was recently introduced to an extraordinary game, Guitar Hero for PS2. My friends and I each pitched in to buy it for eighty dollars at a local gaming outfit. Since then, there has been nothing but laughter, shouting, and squealing rock & roll emitting from their house.
Guitar Hero comes in a package deal; it includes the PS2 game, a plastic guitar controller with strap, and a few stickers for accessorizing the guitar. Other guitar skins can be bought, and even personalized, on Ebay.com.
The game is played like a home version of Dance Dance Revolution, only players use their fingers instead of their feet. The screen shows multicolored dots that slide down the simulated frets of the guitar. Players must match those dots’ patterns on the multi-colored chord buttons while simultaneously strumming’ the button on the head of the guitar. Basically, it’s just playing guitar along to the songs on the game.
As far as songs go, there’s a plethora of rock that will both entertain and challenge the players. Just a few of the songs include Megadeth’s “Symphony of Destruction,” Pantera’s “Cowboys from Hell,” The Ramones’ “I Wanna Be Sedated.” Other artists include Cream, Boston, White Zombie, and David Bowie. In short, there’s a variety of killer tracks to rock out to.
Guitar Hero has won numerous awards from a variety of sources, including D.I.C.E., Gamerdad, and Official Playstation Magazine. These awards include (but are not limited to) Best Music Game 2005,’ Best Family Game,’ and Editors’ Choice.’
Aside from the killer game play, Guitar Hero features some great animation. There’s a variety of characters to choose from in a career mode, including Axel Steel, a jean jacket-wearing, mullet-sporting rocker that grimaces into the camera while he plays. Title menus are animated like rock posters, crowds and venues are extremely creative, and even the load screens are entertaining-they feature three amps, all of which are turned up to 11. Yes, 11.
A Guitar Hero webpage can be found at www.guitarherogame.com. It features all the information anyone could need regarding the game, including tour dates of demo stations and online forums. Players can even find Guitar Hero t-shirts there.
As of April 17, the Guitar Hero homepage has announced the arrival of Guitar Hero 2, scheduled for November 2006, but is keeping a lot of the details under wraps-especially the track list. As of the details they have released: Guitar Hero 2 will feature bass, rhythm, and lead guitar options as well as new characters.
Until then, check out Guitar Hero! It’s great fun for all ages. Once again, it costs around eighty dollars new but can be found for slightly cheaper online. I wouldn’t recommend buying it second-hand, as the guitar can easily get dirty from extended use.