|Could I be more metal?|
Released on: Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360, PS3
Played on: Nintendo Wii
Release date: 2009
I enjoy other things in this world apart from video games. One of the other things I enjoy is playing the guitar, and another thing I enjoy is the music of Metallica. So knowing that about me, this must be a game that I will absolutely love.. right?
There are no words.
I've been a huge Guitar Hero fan since the first release on the Wii (the notoriously difficult Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock) and since then I have accrued two more editions (both of which are due to appear at some point in this playthrough. I know that these games have fallen out of favour with a lot of people, and I know that some people prefer Rockband (and indeed, I have one of those games as well) - but I've always been a Guitar Hero boy through and through.
I don't know why, maybe it's just that it was the first plastic-instrument bashing game I played, but all of the Guitar Hero games hold a special place in my heart. And I remember being ridiculously excited the day they announced that there was a Metallica version coming out.
There are a lot of parallels between Metallica and Guitar Hero. Both are things that many people will now tell you are past their best, and that their best work was the early work. And there's a parallel in my enjoyment for them as well.
I like their early work, but I also like their overblown middle years, and later years when they try to recapture the early magic. I agree that some mis-steps have been made by both, but they both provide entertainment that I find completely amazing, and I will support both to the bitter end. (Even through their low points - Guitar Hero 5 and St Anger respectively!)
And while Guitar Hero appears to have come to a screeching halt (although, given the fascination with re-booting gaming franchises, I imagine we'll see it return at some point), Metallica are still making music (in fact, right now I'm listening to the new song they premièred the other day - The Lords of Summer, which I am enjoying a whole lot).
I think that the point I am making (in my random and convoluted way) is that these two things are perfect for each other. And boy does it show in the game itself.
Metallica songs are mini-masterpieces of riffery and mayhem, a perfect match to the button-clacking precision required for a good Guitar Hero game. By this point in the franchise, GH had mastered all of the game basics - hammer-ons, pull-offs and tapping are all part of the game - and the whole game feels fair. Don't get me wrong, it can be very hard to get a great score - but it's a totally fair game. It takes the solid framework of Guitar Hero: World Tour and gives you brilliantly cartoonish Metallica figures bouncing around playing all their hits and many other songs besides (including one of the best (and under-rated) Metallica songs of all time - the fabulous Dyers Eve!).
Are there any downsides to this game? Well, only the tracklisting from the other bands that make up the extra songs. 28 of the songs are Metallica songs, and the other 21 are songs which are the band's "personal favourites and influences from the years" - and to me, some of these are weak links. But I'm really just picking holes now - how can you complain when you get 28 Mother-F*****g Metallica songs to play!
In conclusion, I know I'm out of sync with many in the world, but I still believe Guitar Hero to be a fantastic game model, and Metallica one of the greatest bands of all time.
And if you disagree, then I completely respect that. (You are wrong, but I respect your right to be wrong!)
Time played: About an hour and a half, and then a couple more goes at Dyers Eve...
Would I play it again? I might play it right now!!
Next time - Brawny is venturing back into the world of RPGs.... how will that go? Come back and find out!