Friday, May 15, 2009

Gold Mining Part 2 - Guitar Zeroes.


Guitar Hero, post Harmonix is fucking doomed.

Mine it, and mine it well, guys.

You caught the Bioshock post, I'm certain, felt my anger towards the subject. This post is in the same vein, but Guitar Hero is another story.

The problem with Guitar Hero is that it isn't getting better with each release, it's simply gotten progressively worse after Harmonix jumped ship. Apparently high off the few gamers who managed to finish the difficult song "Jordan" from Guitar Hero 2, they thought the road to success would be making every song nearly as difficult as that one!


Looks like fun, right?

Inaccurate, unnecessarily difficult note charts, vertical difficulty curve, shoddy art direction and character design, and an overall loose and inconsistent feel made Guitar Hero 3 the last game I picked up in the series. I moved on to Rock Band, and never looked back. It seems that after Harmonix left, Activision realized the series was practically a license to print money and put the men who created and subsequently killed Tony Hawk's series on the job.

If there's anything Neversoft knows, it's how to run a franchise into the ground, and judging by that second introductory link, they're off to a great start.

Now the series suffers from an egregious lack of talent and creativity that leads to them playing catch up with Rock Band ever since its release.

"Hey, let's stick drums and vocals in GUITAR Hero, thereby contradicting the title of the series and openly admitting that we're riding on Harmonix's coattails!"

Brilliant. Why not just make a separate franchise for a full band and call it something else, like...I don't know, Band Hero or something?

...Oh wait.


What makes Rock Band the spiritual successor to Guitar Hero in every way shape and form is the way it took the basic formula of being the guitarist, and expanded it into the format of an entire band. While I won't go into the subtleties of how they improved the game in detail, having accurate, FUN note charts, a unique, engaging visual style, and instead of mining the consumer for their cash, creating a business model where the game is a platform you can expand upon with downloadable music instead of a new game every few months went a long way in advancing the genre.

Superiority in numbers if you're outclassed, I suppose. Good luck oversaturating the market with these "Hero" style music games and running this franchise into the ground even further, Neversoft. Because it's working. You've already managed four GH titles in the two years you've had control, haven't you? Now 7 more are coming before the end of this year. Wonderful.

I was personally finished after 3.

Tool as I am though, I will be picking up Guitar Hero: Smash Hits, on the basis that it reminds me of a time when Guitar Hero DIDN'T suck. Music from 1, 2, and 3 in one tight package.

That will however, be the last 59.99 they ever get out of me.

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