Ars Technica reviews Guitar Hero: World Tour (Verdict: Rock Band has a contender)

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Ars Technica has posted a thoughtful and thorough review of Guitar Hero: World Tour, Activision Blizzard’s attempt to move the Guitar Hero franchise into the full band sim space Rock Band elbowed out for itself.

I admittedly haven’t followed Guitar Hero: World Tour, having given up on Activision’s ability to make a satisfying Guitar Hero game sans Harmonix after the execrable Guitar Hero 3 (and after Harmonix changed the game entirely with Rock Band). That said, Ars thinks the game holds its own with an incredible set list, and I was intrigued to hear that the actual hardware ‐ the plastic guitars and drum sets — has changed significantly, and largely for the better.

Here’s Ars‘ thoughts on the touch strip.

The biggest addition to the guitar is the touch-strip below the buttons, and it’s interesting. While holding a note, you can slide your finger up and down to add a very electronic-sounding “wah” effect, and this works just like the whammy bar. There will also be sections of songs where you can slide up and down instead of hitting the strum button, and those take a while to get used to: the “buttons” are all together with a small ridge between them, making finding the “home keys” very difficult. You also can’t see the colors on the pads because that section of the guitar is indented, making it hard to use even while looking down.

They also thought the three pad drum kits was a significant step up from Rock Band’s, which is the exact opposite of what you’d expect. Sounds like this one can’t be dismissed out of hand.

Guitar Hero World Tour Review [Ars Technica]

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2 Responses to Ars Technica reviews Guitar Hero: World Tour (Verdict: Rock Band has a contender)

  1. A New Challenger says:

    I’ve actually heard that the interface is kind of assy, like all the complaints about a lack of ease of playing songs with friends in different modes that plagued Rock Band 1 and were addressed in Rock Band 2 have resurfaced in GHWT, along with some new ones. And there are a few reports of busted drums, which so far Activision is charging people for shipping to repair. So I’ve heard, anyway.

    Rock Band 2 looks to be a huge improvement on the Wii, with only the tattoo and logo editors getting scrapped for whatever reason. It’s kind of strange and sad that the most popular living room console is such an ill fit for (one of) the most popular living room party game(s.)

    Perhaps I should note I don’t have any of the Guitar Hero or Rock Band games. I do, however, have Donkey Konga.

  2. SamF says:

    My personal take is that Rock Band will probably own the PS3 and 360 markets while GHWT will own the Wii market. I don’t know too many Wii owners who picked up Rock Band since it was so broken on that system. Especially since it came out well after most of the details of GHWT were known. That was my reasoning for sticking with Guitar Hero on the Wii.

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