Guitar Hero has received a massive makeover and it’s pretty clear that the latest entry, Guitar Hero Live, is going to be the most authentic and “rocking” version of the series to date. I went down to the Megarom offices on Friday to give the latest entry a test drive and to see exactly what the fuss is all about.
Starting off; the Guitar Controller has received a massive makeover with brand new buttons and a brand new look. Instead of the old three coloured button guitar, you now have 6 buttons to rock out with. These 6 buttons are placed at the top of the guitar where the old coloured buttons were, conveniently placed under your fingers. Three of these are situated at the top row of the guitar and three at the bottom row. The Guitar Controller also has a strum bar and whammy bar on it that are used during songs. There is also a Hero Power button that along with the builtin Gyroscope lets you rock out by tilting the guitar up and down and just going absolutely mad.
Mastering the Guitar Controller means that you need to be in sync with all 6 buttons in your one hand, and the strum bar in the other. Timing the tap of the strum bar while holding down the positioned button and the correct colour at the same time. It was tough to wrap my head around the idea at first given that it’s change from the original guitar, but after a while I was fine with playing with one colour on the second lowest difficulty.I played through a few songs and it really brought out the rock star in me. One of the game’s biggest features is the new live audience. Because you play in a first person view, when you the camera turns to your band mates and you are performing badly they all give you death stares. The same goes for the crowd, to have real recorded people booing you can be extremely intimidating, and it all adds to the overall experience. You just want to show off and do well, but once you are performing badly, it’s hard to get out of that slump making the game feel more realistic than ever before.
The vibe is just insane, this is all made possible thanks to the massive stadiums in which you perform, the awesome sounds and lighting, and the crowd tech that was used to film battle scenes in The Lord of the Rings. It’s a great combination of video game music meets reality.Guitar Hero TV is another additional service that is launching alongside the game in October. Think of it as MTV, but you get to play the songs with your Guitar. It will be a 24 hours music video channel that is streamed online and is fully interactive with your Guitar Controller. If you like any of the songs that are playing on the channel you can purchase them in game using in game currency you earn by playing the game, or you can buy them straight out with real money.
Guitar Hero Live plays like a classic version of Guitar Hero, but a little more advanced and with an awesome new crowd engine. It is surely going to be just as popular the past titles and become a new party favourite as new songs are released weekly, and with the new Guitar Hero TV, the experience will never end.