I used to love me some plastic instruments but I have to say, I’m just not excited about Guitar Hero Warriors of Rock or Rock Band. I think there’s a finite number of hits you can squeeze onto these games and with the thousand+ songs (combined) available in the Rock Band and Guitar Hero stores I think we pretty much already have most of the songs that would be worth playing. I will say, I’m really curious about the Piano/Keytar additions to both games. Activision has released the full set 90+ song set list. Of that list, I recognize maybe 9 tracks. Take a gander after the break.
The weather outside isn’t frightful (yet). And there shouldn’t be any delightful fires in your chimney. But that doesn’t mean you can’t start thinking about the holidays, when anticipated video games end up on wish lists and – hopefully – in stockings or under trees. Since you are so busy deciding who was naughty or nice this year, Activision made your shopping list easy by teasing seven titles sure to please any hardcore gamer. A few are out. Others are on the horizon. But all seven deserve a peek, and maybe a purchase.
I feel like I’ve reviewed Guitar Hero and Rock Band so many times that I’ve run out of things to say about them. Originally, I wasn’t excited about Guitar Hero 5, Activision’s latest milking of their music game franchise. I looked at the initial set list and had no idea what many of these songs were. I popped the game into my X-Box 360 and nearly dropped the guitar when I saw the full list. It has Peter Frampton’s Do You Feel Like We Do! I was sold on the basis of that song alone, but then I saw the Rolling Stone’s Sympathy for the Devil, and finally, finally, Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit. My god, what a triple threat. On top of these great classics, for the first time ever, you can import previously purchased tracks into a Guitar Hero game – for free. I always end up purchasing some tracks for my Guitar Hero games but lose track of which disk each purchased track went with – another reason I’ve grown to dislike the GH franchise. Now, I, at the very least have all my purchased tracks on one disk. Way to go Activision. Now how about importing my other game disks? How cool would it be to have both Free Bird and Do You Feel Like We Do on the same disk?
Activision finally sent me my copy of Guitar Hero: Smash Hits on the day Michael Jackson dies. Ironically it seemed almost perfect that I would get a music game on the day a music legend passed. I was getting tired of watching the wall to wall coverage and decided, let’s fire up Smash Hits. Initially, I was totally against the idea of a Guitar Hero Greatest Hits collection, I own all the GH titles and this smelled of double dipping. Instead of these constant new discs why can’t Activision do what Rock Band does and simply let users import tracks from all their previous games into one massive library? Or better yet, get their DLC house in order. The Guitar Hero franchise is in danger of oversaturation and the fact that most of the DLC is incompatible with each game tells us Activision really doesn’t care about DLC. So no, at first I thoroughly hated the concept of Smash Hits. But after thinking about it for a few weeks, I was down with the idea of being able to play most of the obvious popular tracks on one disk instead of constantly swapping disk to play one or two songs. Then I saw the full set list for Smash. ugh…
I’ve made my feelings about all of these multiple GH games well known, not to mention how utterly crappy the Guitarhero.com website is, but I’m still going to pick up Smash Hits – I mean come on it has Freebird, FREEBIRD! Activision brings rock’s hottest hits to all major retailers with the launches of their latest pair of Guitar Hero titles, Guitar Hero® Smash Hits and Guitar Hero® On Tour: Modern Hits. Hitting store shelves today, Guitar Hero Smash Hits expands the experience of previous guitar-only games to the full band so gamers can join together and rock to 48 of the most fun and celebrated tracks from Guitar Hero®, Guitar Hero® II, Guitar Hero® Encore: Rocks the 80s and Guitar Hero® III: Legends of Rock. Featuring all master recordings, Guitar Hero Smash Hits delivers a robust feature set and epic on-disc song list including music from fan-favorite artists such as Alice In Chains, Queen, Poison, Rage Against The Machine, Twisted Sister, Heart and DragonForce.
Also available in stores now, Guitar Hero On Tour: Modern Hits features a varied selection of today’s hottest bands and some of their most popular songs in a set list comprised of 28 face-melting modern rock master recordings from influential artists such as Coldplay, Fall Out Boy, Tenacious D, The Strokes and Weezer. Guitar Hero On Tour: Modern Hits provides players with brand new gameplay experiences, including non-linear career progression, a new Fan Requests system and competitive multiplayer modes that allow song-sharing of more than 75 songs between the other games in the Guitar Hero On Tour series.
With E3 upon us in a mere five days the Pre-E3 game line up announcements are starting to pour in Today, I got announcements from Crave, UbiSoft, Sega and Activision. I’m launching our Dedicated E3 site Site in a few days so that the main EM site isn’t taken over by Game News. In the meantime our friends at Activision has quite an interesting line up of titles including Guitar Hero 5, DJ Hero, Blur, Prototype, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, just to name a few, check out the full press release after the jump.
The folks at Activision need to “slow their roll” because they are killing the Guitar Hero franchise with all of these releases. How many does Guitar Hero 5 make it? 4 or 5 different titles in 4 months? None of them compatible with each other? Let’s see we have Guitar Hero: Metallica which came out last month, Guitar Hero: Smash Hits which is coming next month, Guitar Hero: Van Halen, and now Guitar Hero 5, It’s ridiculous! Stop the Monkeys!! We want this stuff to be DLC, darnit! Guitar Hero 5 will let you string up to 4 Drumsets, why anyone would want to do this is beyond me. But it’s there. The game will include master tracks from 85 of the hottest bands of today and the biggest classic acts including; Kings of Leon, The Rolling Stones, The White Stripes, Santana, Vampire Weekend, Tom Petty, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, plus more than 25 artists from a variety of music genres that will be making their music video game debut.
Among the first-time-ever features of Guitar Hero 5 are: Party Play, where players can jump in or drop out of gameplay seamlessly; RockFest, a comprehensive competitive experience available featuring five new head-to-head modes playable online or in your living room; and the ability to play the entire set-list from the first time the game is turned on. Guitar Hero 5 refines the player experience, enhances the art style and redesigns core features such as GHMusic StudioSM, making it the most accessible, fun-to-play and authentic experience for seasoned music gamers as well as first-time players. New innovations such as Band Moments, where bands are rewarded for hitting special note streams together and song challenges where gamers are tasked to play through a song a specific way, add a new competitive layer of excitement and accomplishment to the music rhythm genre.
It had to happen sometime, Activision has officially announced DJ Heroes and Band Heroes at their annual Gamers Day event in LA which, strangely enough the Weasels never invite me to. But then calling them weasels probably means I won’t be getting any invitations anytime soon. I hate to say it but I’m intensely curious to see how this works. Here’s the official press release and some pictures.
Since Activision isn’t going to send me my Guitar Hero World Tour kit for another few weeks, I’m not going to be able to review it for awhile. Which is good because I’m still stuck on Rockband 2 a game I don’t think I’ll ever be able to finish because I have over 300 tracks and the damn game is forcing me to play any tracks but the new ones. But if you ever wondered what the differences are between the two new games are, there are about 19 tracks that are on both. One of those weird YouTubers actually did a comparison between the two games and the one thing you come away with is how unrealistic both of these games are, when they both use different "notes" for the same sequences. If RB and GH were truly accurate you would think it’d be the same. For instance instead of hitting the green notes you hit the orange, which is at the complete opposite end of the scale. Check it out, it’s pretty neat.
In a monumental first for the gaming and music industries, Metallica’s highly anticipated ninth studio album Death Magnetic will be available in its entirety as downloadable content for Activision Publishing, Inc.’s (Nasdaq: ATVI) Guitar Hero® III: Legends of Rock day and date with the album release this Friday, September 12. Featured on the downloadable album will be two Guitar Hero® exclusive renditions of “Suicide & Redemption” with extended solos by James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett. Gamers looking to shred, drum and wail away to the Death Magnetic downloadable album need only purchase the content once as it is forward compatible and will integrate seamlessly with Guitar Hero® World Tour when it launches this October.
In addition to the two exclusive versions of “Suicide & Redemption,” Guitar Hero fans will live out the surreal Metallica experience with: “That Was Just Your Life,” “The End of the Line,” “Broken, Beat & Scared,” “The Day That Never Comes,” “All Nightmare Long,” “Cyanide,” “The Unforgiven Ill,” “The Judas Kiss” and “My Apocalypse.”
“We’ve been working very closely with Metallica and we’re extremely excited to offer Death Magnetic not only in its entirety, but also with the exclusive recordings of ‘Suicide & Redemption’ as downloadable content to Guitar Hero fans,” said Tim Riley, Vice President of Music Affairs for Activision Blizzard. “We’re proud to be setting a new precedent for our two industries, making an entire new album available in two different mediums simultaneously.”
Metallica’s Death Magnetic album will be available for Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock on September 12, 2008 for download on Xbox LIVE® Marketplace for Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft at a cost of 1440 Microsoft Points and in the PLAYSTATION®Store for the PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system at a cost of $17.99.
At the All Things Digital 6 conference, Activision CEO Bobby Kotick officially showcased the new Guitar Hero World Tour game. Personally, I prefer Guitar Hero to Rock Band because I like the track listing better. But Activision almost broke their money maker with Guitar Hero III. Those stupid boss battles, the difficulty level and the obnoxious Animated transitions all served to "ruin" the game experience. Also Rock Band has shown that people want to pay for good DLC and new tunes. The Guitar Hero series is really starting to irritate the heck of me, I have all three titles and if I want to play a particular track, I have to keep swapping disks. Why can’t I access all my favorite tracks from all three games through DLC? Why do I have to keep swapping freaking game disks just to play Free Bird and the rocking Halo Theme? Rock Band has shown us the way. Now I’m going to have add two more games in two months – Aerosmith and GH4? Wake up Activision make these tracks available as DLC. Anyway, back to the new GH. In case you missed it, the next installment of GH will take a page from Rock Band and include a 5 piece drum kit and microphone. But that’s not all, the really cool thing is, Guitar Hero will include music creation capability. It’ll be really interesting to see how this works and evolves.