Guitar Hero World Tour
On The Road Again...
Posted 4 years ago By - Marko Djordjevic
I doubt there is anyone in
While previous Guitar Hero games were about becoming the next great Guitarist, this time they have upped the ante and given players the opportunity to become the next great Bassist, Drummer or Singer. You’ll start off playing at your local college bar in the hopes of reaching Time Square and performing in front of millions as the Ball drops on New Year’s Eve.
The main game feature in World Tour is your career mode. It can be played in one of two ways; either on your own or with friends. If you decide to play solo, you can select to play as any one of the four performers. If you play as a band, you each take an instrument and move your way to the top.
In earlier Guitar Hero games, your career played out fairly straight forward with a scrolling set-list. Complete a certain amount of songs to unlock the next set until you’ve completed the career. Here, your career is played out in terms of Gigs. When you start off, you’ll have the option of selecting any one of three available Gigs for you to perform at. The set-lists will be small, with you only having to play two songs along with an encore. As you complete the first ‘concerts’, you’ll unlock more of them with larger play-lists, including real-life venues and festivals. In some cases, you’ll have to actually pay to perform, but you’ll get that money back once you’ve completed the gig.
Every instrument’s solo career is different, so there is plenty of variety along the path to stardom. The first few songs are relatively easy but as you progress, they will get harder but none of them are so difficult that veterans to the series will be challenged. Also, since you have to play Gigs, you can’t select which songs you play first, so you’ll have to follow the set the way they’ve given it to you. You can cancel out of a Gig without penalty, but for the most part, you’ll want to just play through your concerts from start to finish then move onto the next one.
Since this is Guitar Hero’s first attempt at playing as a Band, it does a fairly good job, but there is a lot of potential in the future. Unlike other Band games, if one person fails during a song, everyone fails. If you’re playing with a beginner, you will get frustrated at having to restart a song because of their inability or lack of knowledge of a certain song. Also, the way in which funds are given out seems to be quite low and unrealistic. Since you need to pay for a few of the gigs in career, you’ll have to avoid upgrading instruments or buying stuff for your band, otherwise, you won’t be able to afford the shows to progress. Thankfully, since there are numerous shows you can perform at, you can simply play something else until you’ve collected enough money to progress.
When playing with friends, they were disappointed that there was no proper judge of just how popular we were as a band. I believe this stems from other band games, but some sort of bonus for attracting people would have made career mode just a bit more satisfying. There is a ranking system for each character, but that is strictly monetary and doesn’t affect the overall band experience.
The other addition to World Tour is the inclusion of a recording studio which allows musical minds create their own GH tracks and upload them for others to listen to and play with. While this is a nice addition, unless you have the time and patience to create a full-length track, you’ll probably not spend time here. Even if you don’t create songs on your own, I would still suggest downloading what others have done since there are quite a few good tracks available and new stuff is appearing all the time.
With every Guitar Hero game, a new set of instruments are made available to coincide with its release. This year instead of just a new guitar, we’re given a drum kit and microphone to complete the true band experience.
The microphone is pretty basic and almost identical with other video game microphones on the market. It picks up sound all the same so you won’t notice anything different if you decide to use something else. I would suggest not using a headset for singing in World Tour. It still manages to pick up sounds, but unless you sing directly into it, your pitch meter will not track well and you may end up getting lower scores.
The new guitar for World Tour is a bit larger than the one from Guitar Hero 3 and has a few modifications to it. The new feature to this controller is the slider bar which allows you to add some style to your songs. It’s a nifty feature, but not necessary to complete songs, so those who opt out of buying a new guitar won’t be missing anything. The other noticeable modification is the addition of a Star Power button just beside the strum bar. Some might use it, but I found it annoying and preferred to simply tilt the guitar up to activate the game’s feature.
The best instrument is definitely the Drum Kit; this is how a virtual drum set should be. With three drum pads, two cymbals and the kick pedal, you’ll feel like you’re actually playing a real drum set. The unit itself is quite sturdy with only a minor problem with the cymbals getting loose if not secured on tightly. Overall, the unit plays really well and I did not encounter any significant problems with it.
For those who already own any previous instruments, unless you’re looking for a really good drum set, there is no need to upgrade here. Every previous guitar and drum set on the market works in Guitar Hero and there are no deficiencies if you decide to use them instead of what is available here. I played using both current and older instruments and there was no noticeable difference, so those looking to save a few bucks will be happy. If Activision and Red Octane ever release the drum set on its own, I would suggest purchasing it and using it for any other music game.
Graphics and Sound
The Guitar Hero series isn’t known for its ground breaking graphics but that’s not to say that they are bad. The same unique cartoon-style from previous games is back, but this time you’ll have the ability to create a character from scratch and modify them to your liking. The old Guitar Hero guitarists from previous games are still here, but you’ll want to create your own player for your career. The environments are pretty with no two locations looking similar. There is a lot going on and as in previous games, the little cut-scenes before the start of a song look good.
World Tour’s music selection is top notch and will satisfy everyone’s musical palette. There is something for everyone, from your recent hits to classics that your parents grew up with. There are more than 80 original tracks available and the collection is growing every week.
While the music is near perfect, there are some problems with the types of songs available. Depending on how you look at it, the non-English songs that vocalists will have to sing might be a bit difficult for those who don’t speak either Spanish or French. The other problem I noticed, once again for singers, is that there were not enough songs that ladies would enjoy to sing. I am not just talking about songs sung by female singers, but those that a female would want to sing; there are a lot of head-banging songs that will only appeal to a small group of singers. Other than those two minor gripes, the soundtrack here is absolutely incredible and will give fans of the series plenty to cheer about.
Regardless if you play through career solo or with your friends, the experience is a long one. It will take you a while to play through the career thanks in part to the game’s robust collection of songs. If you use GHTunes, you can expand your music library almost every day and there are plenty of licensed songs already available for download. Multiplayer outside of band is still there, so if you just want to battle against others locally or online, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to do so.
For NeverSoft and Activision’s first attempt at giving gamers the full band experience, they’ve done a good job. Unfortunately, when compared to the other band game on the market, it still doesn’t manage to better it. Fans of the other series will probably rent this or just buy the game itself since there is no need to purchase the $200 Band Kit. If you haven’t upgraded to a Band game yet, then this is the kit to play with as the instruments are significantly better and feel more like the real thing. This is a still a very good game when viewed only on its own, but when you place it side by side with its competition you can see that there is still much that can be improved. Those loyal to the Guitar Hero series will not be disappointed but fans the other series won’t feel like they are missing anything.
+ Interesting music selection
+ The nicest drum kit on the market
+ Got to love Willie Nelson’s "On The Road Again"
- Career mode, while good, isn’t as polished as other games
- Music Creator will only appeal to those with time, patience and musical minds
- Not enough songs that women will like to sing
- Doesn’t do anything to sway gamers away from the other band game
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Release Date : Q4 2008
System : PlayStation 3
Publisher : Activision
Developer : Neversoft
Category : Music,Tempo, Dance
ESRB : T
7.0 / 10
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