Nov 25, 2009

Guitar Hero World Tour

Who doesn't love Guitar Hero? The moment I first tried the game on a Playstation 2 made me fall in love with the game. One of my predictions back in the late 90s was that one area of major development for video games would be with the game controllers themselves and Guitar Hero was among the first home entertainment titles to justify that (now, if only I had worked for PC Gamer and could have documents that and other predictions). But... and there's always a but... Guitar Hero has been so successful that it's watered itself down. First, it's gone on to create Guitar Hero II, III, World Tour. And, of course, Rock Band was also spawned from this same game. And the Aerosmith version and countless other expansion disks. And most recently Band Hero. Lately, it has been pretty easy to pick some of these games up for a steal because they've made too many and our basements can only store so many plastic guitars.

Enter the mobile version of Guitar Hero. Instead of strumming on a guitar replica I'm forced to quickly tap and hold on touch screen buttons. The music is great, but without the authentic guitar strum motion the game becomes a shell of itself. The mobile platform offers some great opportunities for innovation with touch screens, accelerometers, and haptic feedback. I'd really rather see games that try and take maximum advantage of what we've got instead of trying to cash in on a name.

It's not that Guitar Hero World Tour is bad. The music is good. It plays reasonably smoothly. It has the options you might expect in a Guitar Hero World Tour game such as choosing an avatar or playing the drums (once again... what exactly is different here? I'm still tapping on the screen?).

If you just absolutely have to have Guitar Hero in your pocket because you can't live for a minute away from your console version the perhaps this title is for you. I just think money would be better spent on a game that does something different, fits the mobile platform better, and takes full advantage of what Android devices offer.

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