Published by: RedOctane
Developed by: Neversoft Entertainment
US: October 28, 2007
Console: X360 / PS3 / PS2 / Wii / PC
Four years ago the first generation of Guitar Hero was born. It was released on the PS2 and was a huge success. Now after 4 years there have been 2 more installments of Guitar Hero and another 2 on the way. Before we should even consider thinking about the future guitar heros lets take a look at GH3. Is it still as fun as the first Guitar Hero?
Presentation & Gameplay
Guitar Hero III comes packaged with a guitar and game for $100 CAN. They have changed up the guitar this time, making it wireless which is a huge bonus. Wireless is not only it though, it even comes apart to add different “finishes” to your guitar so you can customize it to how you like. This guitar is much more solid than the previous guitars that I’ve used to play with. I can honestly say they did a damn good job making that guitar peripheral. Although I’ll say just now I’ve only used the X360 wireless guitar so I’m not sure how good the one on PS2 is.
The new guitar
Popping in the game and getting to the menus everything is the same you would expect from guitar hero games. The “punky” font and rock style of design. In the menus you’ll find many different options to choose from. You can start the single player campaign or choose to play with a buddy in co-op campaign. You will also find a new addition to the guitar hero series – Online play. You can choose to play anyone at your skill level and how many songs you want to play with the competitor. Anyways, before digging into the online play let’s first take a look at the basics of guitar hero and how it works.
The guitar consists of 5 different fret buttons. When the notes come close to the screen in the target zone you must strum the different colour notes. The more notes you strum in a row the higher your multiplier will get (a maximum of 4x without star power and 8x with). I’m sure for all you veteran guitar hero plays this seems familiar. In Guitar hero III it’s still basically the same formula as we know and love from the previous guitar hero’s with a few changes. Unlike GH1 this game focuses a lot more on the hammer-on techniques.
One of the many stages
Because most of the songs have lots of hammer-ons the Activision team decided to make it easier to hit them. While some would say this is ridiculous making it “too easy” they are just amateurs and do not have enough experience in Guitar Hero to really judge. They may complain that it should be way harder but you need to look at the fact that there is WAY more hammer-ons in GH3 then there ever was in previous Guitar hero’s. If you tell me you want to play Dragon Force with the same hammer-on style as it was in Guitar Hero original I would say good luck. Essentially making it easier to hit hammer-ons was a good decision for reasons stated above.
The game comes preloaded with 48 songs for the single player tour and another 25 songs to unlock for free play. On top of that there is downloadable song packs to add to your playlist in case you get bored of the preloaded songs. To me I would say the track list in GH3 is pretty damn good, although to others they may think it’s not that great. That is why if you decide to buy this game, you should defiantly consider looking over the track list before you buy it. It really could be a make or break for you. Although I will say this, sometimes you think you hate a song, but after playing it a couple of times it gets more and more enjoyable (most of the time at least ).
The single player campaign plays just like the last guitar hero’s except this time they have added the battles at the end of some sets. Now while this may seem cool at first, I can guarantee it will piss off some of you guitar hero’s out there. Sometimes it can feel really unfair and retarded. As well I think it is kind of out of place in the game. You have the choice to chicken out but it really won’t get you no where except an achievement that gives you 0 points. It defiantly changes your whole train of thought though, not only do you have to conquer all those hard songs at the end, but you also need to beat some “guitar legends” (Tom morello, Slash, etc) in order to truly beat the game. Overall though, it really doesn’t damage the fun of the gameplay too much, as long as you’re good enough to get past them it shouldn’t bug you too much.
Is Tom Morello really a Guitar LEGEND?
Moving to the online play I must say it is pretty well done. They have leader boards to keep track of all your best scores and see how you rank against other people. As well you can pretty much play against anyone you want to, and it does it seamlessly. It never lags (NOR SHOULD IT MAY I ADD). With the new addition of battle mode I will say this now, I don’t like battle mode. It could just be me, but I think it’s fucking stupid. The whole idea of whoever uses the “double note” or “whammy” technique first pretty much wins pisses me off. It really doesn’t feel rewarding when you win because most of the time the only reason you won is because you got some lucky items. I really think battle adds a dumb dimension to the game and isn’t really needed. I suppose the idea was OK but I bet most of the hardcore guitar hero audience doesn’t play it much.
I’ll state the obvious… they are updated from Guitar Hero II. They look normal and get the job done, but they are not like “WOW WTF BBQ”. Firstly, some complaints go to the bright flashes in the game. Sometimes they can be so fucking annoying and probably will make you feel like you’re getting a seizure. I feel that it is unacceptable to put this in the game; they really should’ve toned down on that bullshit lighting. Putting that aside though the rest of the effects are decent and may or may not heighten your excitement.
Bright and Happy
Moving onto the animations of the game; well I defiantly got a few gripes with that. If you look at the drummer while you’re playing you can tell that he looks like a robot. I kid you not; the animations in this game aren’t as fluid as I’d like them to be. This is the 3rd Guitar hero and they still don’t have nice animations? WTF?!? It’s unacceptable and it lowers the graphics score more.
All that aside though, the rest of the game looks fine, but nothing special. Anyways graphics shouldn’t be a huge deal when buying this game, because they really don’t matter too much for a game like this.
Having over 70+ songs and downloadable content as well, this game should leave you feeling satisfied with the soundtrack. As for the overall sound effects it sounds nice and natural. Some tracks aren’t actually the real band singing, although every guitar hero to date has redone some of their songs so I won’t lower the score for that. In general the sound is above acceptable on many levels.
Is the guitar hero series still fun like the first? Well it’s gone through a little bit of changes but I would still say that it is pretty damn fun. If you are a newcomer to the guitar hero series I can say you will probably have a very good experience with it. The replay value is great, you will most likely find yourself playing this game off and on for over a year like a lot of others. The new guitar is solid and great. Paying $100 for this game is worth it. If you are the least bit interested and you like the track list go buy it now. Overall, this game is good, but it has some graphical issues that hurt it quite as bit; as well after playing 3 guitar hero’s and having the same experience over and over I will say that if you’re a veteran it won’t revive you to the guitar hero series if you got bored of it previously. Three guitar heros and still having the same formula defiantly hurts the overall score of this game. Over the next year we will see if the new guitar hero’s coming out will add more to the formula or if guitar hero will start to lose its charm.
10 = Masterpiece
Not all games are perfect, but a 10 comes close and is something very speical and rare - It is without a doubt a must buy regardless of what genre's you like.
9.5 - 9.9 = Increadible
Titles that get in this score range are fantastic achievements in design, gameplay, and story - usually all of the above. These are titles at the top of their field and are worhtly of your hard earned dollars.
9.0 - 9.4 = Outstanding
If a game gets in this range you know that it is a worthwhile experiance with only a few minor flaws. If you are the least bit interested in the series/genre it is recommended for a buy.
8.0 - 8.9 = Great
A strong gaming experiance that misses some key elements in a few areas. While still highly recommended for a buy, if you are not interested in the genre/series these games could be skipped.
7.0 - 7.9 = Decent
A title that is still quite fun but has significant flaws which drag down the gameplay, hindering a good experiance throughout the game. Games that fall under this score are recommended for a rent or quite possibilty a buy if you are a fan of the series.
4.0 - 6.9 = Poor
A generic title that doesn't offer anything new to the table with obvious and serious flaws. Games under this category are not advised for a buy although you may be able to squeeze some fun out of them with a rent.
0.1 - 3.9 = Terrible
Titles that ensure a terrible gaming experiance. Do not buy or rent, just avoid them at all costs.
Edited by The Colonel, 06 August 2009 - 09:45 PM.