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Attack of the Guitar Heroes

September 16, 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

Pet peeve time: Guitar Hero.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a fun game, but I’m starting to get tired of seeing yearly installments. This is one of those games where the gameplay is static, it’s stayed more or less the same between GH 1, 2, and 3. The biggest change was moving to next gen with GH3, and that, I think, merited a sequel. But now that we’re in the current gen, with digital distribution and DLC, I see sequels as even less neccesary with these games. Why put one out yearly if it’s just going to be the same package with a new song list? It’s just cashing in on a popular gameplay element, and to me, it’s a waste to spend 60 bucks a pop to get the same product as last year with a new sound track. It would be much better to just release massive set lists yearly as DLC and let people pick and choose what they want, and maybe release one or two guitar hero games every generation.

Now, I know, I know, GH4/World Tour is changing up the gameplay quite a bit – how? Be becoming a rock band clone! Hurrah! Now we have two total identicle games coming out with yearly instalments! What luck! So now I can spend another 120 dollars getting Guitar Hero’s answer to a game I spent over a hundred on LAST year!

Brilliant strategy on their part, though, because people buy it!

It’s like madden in a way, except madden actually adds new gameplay elements and ups the graphics every year – but for the most part they could just release one or two madden gamesa generation and update rosters via DLC.

To top this all off:

At a presentation for analysts yesterday, the publisher confirmed that it wasn’t quite through with its epic “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” financial-windfall drum solo. Activision Publishing president Mike Griffith told the assembled analysts that next year, the company would be doubling 2008’s number of Guitar Hero SKUs. (The same game appearing on three different platforms would be counted by retailers as three stock-keeping units, or SKUs.) The publisher wants to keep up that pace of expansion, and Griffith said that in 2010, Activision Blizzard plans to release almost triple this year’s number of Guitar Hero SKUs.

“We’ve learned that the consumer still has an insatiable appetite for more,” Griffith said.

Why, god, why? Just to drive the point home, let me list the GH games that have been put out or are planned.

  • Guitar Hero
  • Guitar Hero 2
  • Guitar Hero Encore: Rock the 80’s
  • Guitar Hero 3: Legends of rock
  • Guitar Hero 3: Mobile
  • Guitar Hero: Aerosmith
  • Guitar Hero: On Tour
  • Guitar Hero: On Tour: Decades (Another case of unneeded sequel. The first one sucked anyways.)
  • Guitar Hero: World Tour
  • Guitar Hero: Metallica
  • Guitar Hero 3: Backstage Pass
  • Guitar Hero Carabiner

And this is all from November 2005 to September 2008. Three years, and this library is as long as some franchises that have been around for ten or twenty. Aerosmith, rock the 80s, and Metallica are worth noting as specific examples of RELEASE IT AS DLC YOU TWATS.

EDIT: In my hate to bitch about something that annoys me, I neglected to consider some people either have no decent net connection for XBL or PSN, or no hard drive, so DLC would fuck them over hard. I’m sorry, I can see why the yearly sequels would be needed in that case. Someday, though, someday… The internet and HDDs will be standard, and then we’ll get back to this.

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  1. September 17, 2008 at 1:05 am

    I’d hazard to say the internet and HDDs basically are standard already.
    If you’re serious enough about Guitar Hero to want to pick and pay for your own additional songs, you really should already have both of those.
    On another note though, even when absolutely everyone has a HDD and fast internet connection, this kind of thing will still continue. Franchises need to keep a fresh face on the store shelves, I know I’m always far more interested in purchasing a game if it’s been released recently.

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