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Guitar Hero 2 Impressions Roundup

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the are-you-ready-to-rock dept.


The folks at Red Octane (now owned by Activision), are in the process of making a sequel to the hit PS2 title Guitar Hero. From the IGN hands-on: "Today we checked out 'John the Fisherman' on bass and 'War Pigs' on guitar. Being that you have Les Claypool on bass for 'John the Fisherman', it's not going to be the easiest bass line in the game by a long shot. But on the other hand, there isn't any sort of bass solo in the song so once you get down the main two or three licks, then you've got the song nailed. But it's seriously awesome - Claypool's playing in that song is heavy and pounding so playing his part is rad."

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how realistic is the play? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15311020)

As a musician, and someone who hasn't played these games, I'm curious what experienced musicians think of them? I cannot imagine that the gameplay is that close to actual playing unless the interface would be attached to an actual instrument.

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

teeseejay (967400) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311040)

Not very realistic at all, but if nothing else it helps with fretting dexterity and it tries to approximate the action of hammer-ons and pull-offs.

Re:how realistic is the play? (2, Insightful)

Golias (176380) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311045)

Guitar Hero : Actual guitar playiing :: DDR : Performance dance.

It's not the same thing at all, really.

That doesn't mean it can't be fun for the person doing it, whether they know how to do the "real" task or not.

Re:how realistic is the play? (2, Insightful)

Eideewt (603267) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311095)

I'm in kind of the same position. I don't see the fun in pretending to play songs when I could just sit down and play them for real (especially when they're songs I already know, like John the Fisherman). Obviously I'm not the target audience for this game, but I'm wondering if there are some musicians here who do enjoy playing it.

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

badfrog (45310) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311176)

I've played guitar (non-professional) for over 15 years, and I love the game. I was very suprised, as I was not expecting to be impressed by it. So definitely give it a try.

While not like playing a real guitar, someone that has done so gets quite a head start advantage in the game.

And it's great for parties. Now everyone has to fight between Karaoke Revolution and Guitar Hero. (And usually split between the sexes)

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

rob1980 (941751) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311190)

GH was fun for me because I got to play Symphony Of Destruction on something besides an air guitar :) But as someone who played clarinet and sax in high school, I'd probably agree with you if I came across a Woodwind Hero game.

Re:how realistic is the play? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15311902)

I'd probably agree with you if I came across a Woodwind Hero game.

Oh, where to start with is one....?

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

MaestroSartori (146297) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311208)

Thought I'd chime in here as well - the people who are getting the most fun out of this game around our office are musicians. Mostly guitarists, I personally play bass and a little guitar. We all love it. It's just a fun game really, it gets the feel of guitar just right and uses the feel to give you points. Try it, you might like it!

It's a game, not a guitar simulator. (1)

llevity (776014) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311211)

I play guitar, and still enjoy the game. As my subject says, it's designed to be a game, not a guitar simulator. And as such, it fulfills the goals of most games. It's something you can sit down, quickly pick up and play, and get some instant gratification from.

I don't know how good you are, but picking up a new song on a guitar takes me a little practice. It's fun to be able to sit down and instantly start wailing on a song I've never even seen the sheet music for.

Re:how realistic is the play? (2, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311250)

I like playing GTA even though it's nothing like stealing a real car.

piling on opinions (2, Interesting)

carbonautomoton (972777) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311942)

i also am a guitar player who enjoys the game. the thing that makes guitar hero great is that it allows you to "feel" like you're playing the song without requiring the same level of concentration that playing an actual guitar does.

Re:how realistic is the play? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15311866)

For those of you who want a very realistic music game, check out Konami's Drummania.

Re:how realistic is the play? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15312304)

Honestly? It's fun anyway. I have played guitar and bass in bands since 1997, and I laughed at GH because the old Guitar Freaks arcade game was such a joke - with three fret buttons and a bunch of j-pop music, the only thing it had in common with a guitar was the word itself. So at first I was like "pass."

I was at Best Buy and tried Guitar Hero, and I didn't put that thing down for like an hour. It's true that it's not the same as playing for real - but it's fun in its own right, and knowing your meter and beat will help you pass a lot of songs that make newbies struggle at first, such as Thunder Kiss 65, Stellar, and Cowboys from Hell. I also discovered that it helps to use a heavy pick when you play. Yep, just pick the guitar strum thing as though it were a string. It works perfectly.

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

purple_cobra (848685) | more than 7 years ago | (#15313026)

Two guitar-playing mates of mine are hooked on the game, and recently had a competition to determine the better 'player'. The older bloke, a guitarist of some 15 years' experience, was not too impressed when he didn't win!

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

jkerman (74317) | more than 7 years ago | (#15313714)

my roommates are musicians and they LOVE it. If you like rock, youll like this game.

i mean, if you raced cars, you wouldnt play gran turismo? or PGR?

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

Eideewt (603267) | more than 7 years ago | (#15314045)

I might not. I think I'm the type who would quickly say, "Screw this game, I'm going for a drive."

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

SkyWalk423 (661752) | more than 7 years ago | (#15318046)

You have quick, easy access to a world-class racetrack and a garage filled with $250K race-tuned automobiles??? Yeah, I'd get bored of GT4 too.

Re:how realistic is the play? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15319536)

Chances are high that he's refering to a Honda Civic, circa 1994, which he THINKS is a $250k car. You know, because with that coffee can on the exhaust it sounds SOOO close. :)

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

Eideewt (603267) | more than 7 years ago | (#15320414)

No, but that's what I'd want to do. Of course, we're really talking about Guitar Hero here, and I do have plenty of guitars.

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

ereshiere (945922) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311181)

It's VERY different and ultimately too confusing. What you play in GH veers wildly, even within the same song--sometimes you are playing the lead guitar, sometimes the bass, sometimes the vocal melody (?!). There is little correspondence between what the guitar in the recording is doing and what you are supposed to hit on the guitar controller. Often, the same note in the recording will be represented by two or three different fret combos.

I'd give a friend's copy a try; at the least, you'll be far better at it at first than someone who has no experience whatsoever with the instrument. The guitar is also very small.

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

twistedsymphony (956982) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311523)

it varies because if you were to just play, say the bass part it'd be a pretty boring game. Not saying playing music is boring, but it is certainly repetative, especially songs on the lower end where people are just learning the game (and considering it's more of a pickup party game that's a large number of the player base). It's nice that they mix it up. Without that most song would just be...

verse, chorus, verse, chorus, bridge/solo, chorus

You'd be constantly repeating 2 really easy patterns with a really friggin difficult part 3/4 of the way through...

Re:how realistic is the play? (1)

llevity (776014) | more than 7 years ago | (#15313129)

Agreed. As I said in an earlier message, this is a game, not a simulator. There are cases where certain poetic licences are taken for the sake of gameplay.

Own section? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15311178)

It seems that Guitar Hero may be in need of its own section soon.

All these freaking controllers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15311698)

When is someone going to make a game that lets me use the GH controller, a Taiko Master/Donkey Konga controller, and a set of dance pads in an ultimate party experience multiplayer game? StepMania programmers, I'm looking in your direction...

Rockin' E3 Video (1)

themurph17 (658770) | more than 7 years ago | (#15311945)

Gamespot has an awesome 15-20 minute video with Executive Producer, John Tam. Meanwhile 2 other Gamespot editors rock out to KISS "Strutter", Primus "John The Fisherman" and Rush "YYZ". Primus Sucks! http://www.gamespot.com/e3/e3live.html?autoplay=61 50057 [gamespot.com]

Re:Rockin' E3 Video (1)

themurph17 (658770) | more than 7 years ago | (#15312155)

ooops! scroll down and click on "Guitar Hero II E3 2006 Stage Show Demonstration". i can't find a working direct link.

Re:Rockin' E3 Video (1)

AdamTrace (255409) | more than 7 years ago | (#15313116)


I wish they could have found some better players to demonstate, though... that big guy sucks, and the squeaks are hurting my ears.

Now I know how my wife feels...


Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (2, Insightful)

c0d3h4x0r (604141) | more than 7 years ago | (#15313464)

I don't get the fascination with this type of game.

You can fork out several hundred dollars to get a PS2, the game, the controller(s), etc... and still not really be learning to play a real instrument. ...or you can walk down to your local guitar center and buy a real start instrument and really learn how to play it.


Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (1)

AdamTrace (255409) | more than 7 years ago | (#15313615)

I'm 31 years old. For better or for worse, I've played computer games almost every day of my life since we got an Apple ][+ in 1979.

Guitar Hero is one of the most fun games I've ever played and I don't make statements like that lightly.

The point isn't to learn how to play a guitar. The point is to have fun, and Guitar Hero is successful, in my opinion.


Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (1)

demonic-halo (652519) | more than 7 years ago | (#15313716)

Yeah.. if I weren't so lazy and untalented,

I'd also go so far as to joining a real band, playing real gigs and getting tons of groupies, STDs, and all the Crank that comes with it.

But.. I guess I'm sticking to my desk job.

Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (2, Insightful)

slipster216 (903231) | more than 7 years ago | (#15314167)

I don't get this whole John Madden thing; I mean, why spend hundreds on a console when you could be down at the park playing for the price of a football? I don't get the whole GTA thing, I mean, why not go down to wallmart and buy a real gun to shoot real people with?

Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15315830)

Why use guns when you can just run them down with your car?

Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (4, Insightful)

DumbWhiteGuy777 (654327) | more than 7 years ago | (#15314378)

As a musician, I'll try to answer your question, even though I DO think it's a bit flamebait.

First, the learning curve. Anyone who plays an instrument will tell you it's pretty hard at the beginning. Especially chords. I still can't do a proper barre chord. Those things are hard. This is all compared to Guitar Hero, which allows me to pick up the controller and bust out a wide selection of songs after just a few tries(on easy mode, obviously).

Second, the price difference isn't as much as you think. If you want a GOOD guitar, it will cost you at least 300-500 dollars. If you try to give a beginner a cheap guitar, they will probably become frustrated and quit. This is not including an amp(a cheap 15W amp is like 75 dollars I think), strings, and a stand.

Third, multiplayer. This goes with #1, but my girlfriend can play this. Any video game that can get your girlfriend to play with you is worth it's weight in gold.

Fourth, calluses. They hurt when you begin and not everyone wants to deal with them.

Probably more, but that's all I can come up with off the top of my head. You should try playing the game, though. It's fun. You'll probably like it.

Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (1)

billcopc (196330) | more than 7 years ago | (#15314510)

Friend, I wish I had mod points. Now I'm a DDR freak, yet I'm not much of a dancer. I tried DrumMania and thoroughly enjoyed it, yet I suck at drumming. I played Guitar Freaks, and well I sucked ass at that one, but it was still kind of fun. I've been trying to learn guitar on-and-off for 20 years, I just can't do it.

The great appeal of these music games is that they're simple and easy to pick up. They tell you exactly what to do, you just have to get your rhythm down and hit the buttons with proper timing. Learning a real instrument inevitably requires learning at least a minimum of musical theory that must be committed to memory, then practiced until it becomes fused with your subconscious mind. Great musicians just kind of "know" their scale progressions, and what sounds right together chord-wise. Playing Guitar Hero you can shut off your brain (the part responsible for stress headaches), and just flick buttons while watching an excessively gratifying display with a goofy engrish announcer cheering you on.

If anyone ever came out with a realistic music game that actually teaches you to play, most people would play once, fail horribly and never play it again because the game didn't give them satisfaction. We like games because they give us easy feedback on our progress and improvement. Your score gets better, you play longer, you get to see/hear new things later in the game, but most importantly that progress happens quickly, keeping you interested. Learning an instrument takes years, for the technically-minded among us it can even seem like a horrid waste of time, we're so used to instant gratification and having machines do the "hard" work for us. Then there's the problem of coming up with music to play, either by composing your own, or learning someone else's work (then dealing with the grueling comparisons).

Guitar Hero is a good thing, trust me.

Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (2, Insightful)

BenjyD (316700) | more than 7 years ago | (#15316077)

Do you understand the concept of a 'game'? Playing Guitar Hero is this thing called 'fun'. Spending weeks learning to play Polly-wolly-doodle on a guitar isn't.

Re:Why not buy a real guitar or bass? (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 7 years ago | (#15316343)

For the same reason that, despite finding karaoke generally quite dull, I really enjoy SingStar - it gives you points.

Sometimes, more points than your friends. Which is pretty much the case whether you have the ability to do these things properly or not.

Tool + Guitar Hero (1)

labal (804733) | more than 7 years ago | (#15314029)

Tool like playing Guitar Hero as well, hopefully we might see a track from them on their as well. Having Primus on there is pretty damn cool. Fianlly a good reason to consider getting a PS2.
Tool February Newsletter [toolband.com]


Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15315119)


Realism (1)

HaymarketRiot (931189) | more than 7 years ago | (#15316782)

Guitar Hero isnt supposed to be realistic, it's supposed to be fun. If it was uber-realistic, it would probably be alot harder, and wouldnt be nearly as fun. Yeah sure, you could buy a real guitar for around the same amount and learn to play that, but that would take hours and hours of practicing. Heck, why buy Battlefield 2 when I can go enlist in the army and be shipped off Iraq? People play video games to experience something that they normally could not do...not everyone is even musically talented enough to play a guitar without tons of practice. You can stop knocking GH's realism right now, because its not supposed to be realistic, its supposed to be fun.

How does this work? Really playing guitar? (1)

rbanzai (596355) | more than 7 years ago | (#15318186)

Do you actually play the guitar in this game, or is it just some weird pseudo-guitar controller with buttons on it?

If you actually play the guitar then it's kind of odd. Does it have a teaching aspect or can only already capable guitarists play it?

Re:How does this work? Really playing guitar? (2, Informative)

AdamTrace (255409) | more than 7 years ago | (#15318284)

You get a plastic guitar controller thing with buttons on it.

5 buttons up on the neck of the guitar, and a little flipper switch down where you strum.

On screen, in very DDR like fashion, when the right colored dot hits the line, you push down the appropriate fret button, and hit the strummer.

You're not actually playing the guitar. Playing GH won't teach you how to play the guitar (though I believe that it would give you a leg up on someone who'd never played). One of the great things about the game is that it's immediately accesible to gamers and non-gamers alike... After playing a song or two, everyone just seems to "get it".

Hope that helps.
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