Early thoughts on “Guitar Hero: World Tour:”
- I started on Medium mode this time around. GH3 gave me enough experience that I thought starting on Beginner or Easy mode would be too mind-numbing. I was right. Medium is relatively simple, but has its challenges: keeping your concentration through 400+ notes is one of the biggest. The occasional interspersed fourth fret throws you off when you’re not used to using it. And yet it’s “easy” enough to really get into the rhythm of the music and find your GH groove. There are some tricky combo moves, though, that keep me on my toes.
- So, you have to play sets of songs (2 to 4) to advance on this system, and not just a song at a time? Weird. Well, I mean, you can not do the career mode and just practice a song. So it’s still available to you. But it is different. Likewise, I haven’t played as a bass yet, but I can’t wait.
- So far, the hardest thing to do has been to come up with a band name.
- The new guitar is a little longer than the previous model. That took some adjusting. The star power button is a nice addition, but I haven’t wrapped my brain around it yet. I’ll work it in eventually. For now, I just do the traditional Raising of the Guitar Neck to invoke it.
- The slide portion on the neck, likewise, is something that excites me but I haven’t worked into my gameplay yet. I fear taking my right hand off the strumming part, even for a second. I know there’s a tutorial for it in there, so I’ll have to play with it later.
- I’m not a Nirvana fan, yet it was a Nirvana song that landed me my first 100% score of the game.
- GH is fascinating to me, from a music perspective: When you think of a song, you hum the melody. But the lead guitar line is often NOT the melody. When you’re playing a GH song, it takes a while to stop pressing the frets to the melody, and start playing to the guitar line. I find that fascinating. And the songs that go further off that line are often the most challenging and rewarding. (I think I mentioned this with the previous iteration of the game, too. Pardon my repetition.)
- It’s obvious that some songs were chosen for their drum or vocal parts, and not their guitar licks. Some songs are almost painfully boring to play on the guitar, with long silent portions. That Beastie Boys song is only there for the person singing. Perhaps it’s good for the drums, too, I don’t know. But it’s not a guitar song. Does this weaken the brand? Or is it what the video game populace demands, and so Activision must provide?
- There’s still a certain level of cognitive dissonance in watching the CGI band perform a song by a band you know, particularly when using the original master tracks that sound like they come from the 1970s or 1980s. You KNOW Rick Springfield doesn’t look like that guy, and hearing those old recordings being performed by a character animated with a few thousand polygons seems — off. I’d expect the Intellivision Running Man to be singing the song, instead, you know?