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Guitar Hero 3

 

 

SCORE: 61

 

Guitar Hero 3 

 

Guitar Hero III is the latest installment of the popular guitar rhythm game and the first of the series to find its way onto the Wii. I have played previous versions of this game and have enjoyed them immensely so I was very excited to play the latest iteration. Unfortunately, this version, which had a different developer than the last two games, took all the good things about the series and added a number of things that have really curbed my enthusiasm for this game.

The first major problem with this game is the style the new developers gave the game. In the first two games, the characters were mainly just rock stars doing different venues working from a back yard to a large stadium. This time though, the game has taken a decidedly darker tone. At the end of the game, the storyline of the game has your player signing his soul over to the agent which is represented by a devil style character. The last venue is also set in a place that is basically a representation of Hell, though it’s not called that. This is an unfortunate change in the style of the game and takes away from the overall enjoyment of the game.

Another area that has taken a turn for the worst is the music chosen for the game. The music selected seems to have a much darker tone than in previous games. As you get farther into the game the music gets worse and worse, ending in the last set having a song with 666 in its title. Many of the songs are ones that I haven’t even heard of with a few recognizable songs mixed in. After unlocking all the songs through career mode, most players would only play a small percentage of the total available songs.

While playing the game, you receive money when you do well that is usable in an extras section where you buy new outfits, guitars, characters, and songs. The bonus songs that you unlock though are even more obscure and unenjoyable than the songs that you play during the main game. The songs all come from unknown groups that are no older than 2006 so most people will have no idea what songs they are or want to play them. The good thing about Guitar Hero though is the overall replayability. Even though there are few songs worth playing over, the ones that are enjoyable are fun to play time and time again.

The one area that has seen the least amount of change compared to earlier games is the general gameplay. The new developers knew better than to change the basic mechanics of the game because they worked so well in previous versions of the game. If someone has played a version of the game before, they will have no problem picking up the guitar and starting a game on a higher difficulty level. For those that have not played a Guitar Hero game before, the game does a good job of introducing you to the basic mechanics through a tutorial mode and you can play any of the songs in a practice mode to learn how to play the song without any penalties.

Despite its flaws, Guitar Hero III can be a fun game to play. Unfortunately it falls short in the most important area, family friendliness. The change to a darker style was an unnecessary change and it adds nothing to the game. I would have no problem letting a younger player play the first two versions of the game but this one is not appropriate for families. It is unfortunate that the game basically sends your characters to Hell to play for and against a devil style character. I think this game really could have been a great game had the developers thought more about the families that would want to play this game together.
- Chris

 

Graphics: 55%
Sound: 55%
Replay/Extras: 68%
Gameplay: 80%
Family Friendly Factor: 45%
System: Wii
Publisher: Activision
ESRB Rating: 'T' for Teen
{Lyrics, Mild Suggestive Themes}

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