Guitar Hero 5 - Xbox 360

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Also for: Wii, PS3, PS2
Viewed: 2D Third person, into the screen Genre:
Rhythm: Timing
Media: DVD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Neversoft Soft. Co.: Activision
Publishers: Activision (GB/GB)
Activision Blizzard (US)
Released: 11 Sept 2009 (GB)
Oct 2009 (US)
Ratings: BBFC PG
Accessories: Drum Controller, Microphone, Guitar Controller


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By now, everyone knows what to expect from the latest version of the game that popularised console music games. In the extremely unlikely case that you are not familiar with the series, firstly, welcome back from what must have been a quite protracted visit to another planet, but let us explain. Guitar Hero involves playing along to popular music songs on a USB guitar peripheral that comes bundled with the game (or not, for users who already have one). You have to hit and hold notes on button on the USB guitar fretboard in time with the notes in the song. Hitting a series of notes increases your score multiplier, missing notes will drop your performance meter, and if you do it repeatedly you will get booed off stage.

As you would expect, GH5 does not re-write a winning formula, but instead adds to it with new songs, and artists. This time there are 85 songs by 83 different artists, and as is typical of Guitar Hero games, several of the artists are rendered in 3D for you to play when performing their songs. These include Johnny Cash, Carlos Santana and Shirley Manson of Garbage. The big news is that GH5 features songs by Nirvana, and Kurt Cobain is also one of the 3D avatars. There is also an character editor, but 360 users can also import and use their XBox live avatar.

Other improvements to the latest version of Guitar Hero mean that players can now us the drums and microphone controllers from Guitar Hero World Tour as well as the traditional guitar. They can also jump in and play without spending as long in the game's menu system. Both the single career mode and competitive multi-player modes have been enhanced. In "Party Play" mode players can jump into a band or drop out in the middle of a song. Instruments and difficulty levels can be changed mid-song.

"RockFest" can be played by up to four players locally or up to eight online. Rockfest enables players to create a playlist, and play each song in one of the following modes:
"Momentum" gradually increases the game difficulty, and enables players to score more points as difficult increases but will fall back in difficulty if the player miss three notes in a row. In "Streakers" mode, points are awarded for successfully hitting a sequence of consecutive notes, longer streaks iv higher scores. "Perfectionist" mode ranks players by the percentage of notes hit on each section of a song. "Do or Die" mode kicks a player out until the end of the section if they fluff three notes. "Elimination" kicks the lowest scoring player at the end of each section. "Pro Face-Off" is a straightforward score attack mode, with the highest score winning.

GH5 features the Music Studio mode, which enables player to create their own songs, and share them using the GHTunes on-line service. This has been enhanced to enable users to create songs up to 10 minutes long, and upload up to 50 songs.