Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock PlayStation 2
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Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock Product Details
Released on 23/11/2007
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock's boss battles give Guitar Hero fans a chance to compete against legendary guitarists such as Slash and Tom Morello. Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock players are required to deplete the boss' Rock Meter before the boss goes into their Death Drain solo, which always means 'lights-out.' After defeating a boss, Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock players unlock that guitarist as a playable character and continue to the encore for the set list, which is a master recording of one of their respective bands' most well-known tracks. for instance, When Morello is defeated, the next performance is Bulls on Parade, during which Morello performs on stage alongside the Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock player.
Guitar Hero III Features:
- Slash’s Original Boss Battle Recording
- Welcome to The Jungle (by Guns N’ Roses)
- One (by Metallica)
- Paint It Black (by The Rolling Stones)
- Cherub Rock (by Smashing Pumpkins)
- Sabotage (by Beastie Boys)
- The Metal (by Tenacious D)
- My Name is Jonas (by Weezer)
- Knights of Cydonia (by Muse)
- Even Flow (by Pearl Jam)
- Lay Down (by Priestess)
- Cult of Personality (by Living Colour)
- Miss Murder (by AFI)
- Through Fire and Flames (by Dragonforce)
- Number of the Beast (by Iron Maiden)
- 3's and 7's (by Queens of the Stone Age)
- Suck My Kiss (by Red Hot Chili Peppers)
- Raining Blood (by Slayer)
- Reptillia (by The Strokes)
- Paranoid (as made famous by Black Sabbath)
- Cities on Flame (as made famous by Blue Oyster Cult)
- Mississippi Queen (as made famous by Mountain)
- La Grange (as made famous by ZZ Top)
- Rock and Roll All Nite (as made famous by Kiss)
- School’s Out (as made famous by Alice Cooper)
- Rock You Like a Hurricane (as made famous by Scorpions)
- Slow Ride (as made famous by Foghat)
- Barracuda (as made famous by Heart)
Iain really does have an axe to grind this time...
I started my review of Guitar Hero II with a soliloquy on my relationship with it, and how it broke my heart on a nightly basis but I still loved it regardless. A year later, and that relationship is now well and truly out of the "honeymoon" period. It's moved in, got its own product in the bathroom, draws in the bedroom, and it keeps pestering me for "housekeeping" money. And more straining of this already tired analogy later.
Guitar Hero III marks the first game in the series not developed by the brilliant minds at Harmonix, with it now being made by the people who have managed to keep Tony Hawk a household name for just under the past decade, Neversoft. And in much the same way they've done with those games, they've kept the core mechanics the same, tweaked a few things here and there and given the graphics a quick polish. And added an unnecessary story.
Granted, the "story" here goes as far as a number of short animations between each section in Career mode. They're actually quite amusing and serve their purpose well, even if they do raise the general corn levels.
STOP! Hammer-on Time!
Like in Guitar Hero II, the only major difference to how the game actually plays has been made to the hammer-ons and pull-offs. While the second game actually made them work, this one makes them even easier. It doesn't matter when you actually press the button for a hammer-on/pull-off now, as long as the button is held down when the note passes. Also, by extension, you can hold down lower notes while playing higher ones, making things like Through the Fire and Flames by Dragonforce possible without major surgery. Just.
The other major changes, again like Guitar Hero II, come in the multiplayer. Co-operative play has been given an entirely new career mode, with some songs only being unlockable in this mode and the versus play has been spiced up as well with the addition of Battle mode, the primary domain of the vindictive bar steward.
Battle mode, the primary domain of the vindictive bar steward
Battle mode introduces power-ups to your multiplayer sessions (and also a couple of the singleplayer segments as well) for you to fire at your opponents, with the general aim being to get them to miss notes so their Rockometer goes down and they fail the song. These range from the mildly annoying (Broken String, which just means you have to hammer a colour button a couple of times) to the utterly diabolical (Lefty Flip, which flips on the on-screen fret board round and, to paraphrase and sanitise an Activision rep, will screw you right up, son.)
Too Much Hassle
Unfortunately, the changes made to co-op don't work quite so well. You can no longer play though the career mode in singleplayer, and then play any of the songs again in co-op mode. You have to first unlock all of the songs again, and to further complicate the matter, the lowest difficulty determines which you have unlocked. For example, you and a friend play through co-op career with both of you playing on Expert, unlocking all the songs. If someone else comes along, and wants to play a bit of co-op, but they're not quite as good as you so want to play it on Medium…you're going to have to go through and unlock the songs all over again. This means that to completely unlock all of the songs on all difficulties, you're going to have to go through the whole career 4 times. Far, far too much hassle.
But all that stuff is dressing. What really matters about these games is the song selection, and it's here that you're going to have to excuse me. The main song list isn't too bad, it has its problem tunes (yes, I realise that one man's problem tune is another man's favourite, and you can't please everyone) but on the whole it's solid, with some truly exceptional tracks. It's got a better mix of styles than the second game, so whereas II didn't have much for people who don't like their metal, this one maintains the hard rock roots, but adds some diversity.
Out are the songs from interesting bands with a fan-base smaller than my family
There is however a part of me that I have to suppress while looking at the "Bonus Tracks" section. It sits in the back of my brain screaming "YOU'VE SOLD OUT, MAAAN" at me on a daily basis and I can usually drown it out, but it comes even further to the fore while looking at the bonus tracks. Out are the songs from interesting bands with a fan-base smaller than my family, in is the line-up from a Sunday morning episode of T4's Popworld (Ruby? Is that really one of the best examples of guitar music that this country has to offer?)
Activision has said that this part of the song list has been localised to different territories, and that's fairly obvious. But it's sad to see that the many great independent artists and unsigned bands of this country are almost completely unrepresented.
But that's just me. You might love it. Whatever. I'll go back to my massively pretentious beardy music.
It might seem from the 800 or so words preceding these that I'm disappointed in Guitar Hero III, and to an extent I am. But only slightly. It's still gaming joy in its purest form and to trot out that analogy for hopefully the last time, I still love it and I don't see us breaking up any time soon.
An affair might be on the cards though…
- The same classic Guitar Hero gameplay.
- Battle mode is great fun with a few people.
- Some absolutely brilliant tunes.
- Disappointing lack of smaller bands.
- Changes made to co-op mode are pointless and annoying.
- For a 70 strong song list, there's a lack of absolute classics.
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock Review (08/11/2007)
Iain really does have an axe to grind this time...
I started my review of Guitar Hero II with a solilo…
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