Guitar Hero: World Tour is the landmark franchise's first foray into group-based band territory, offering up options to not only rock out on the titular guitar but also get your bass groove on, smash your way to stardom on drums, or wail glass-shattering vocals to an impressive selection of popular tunes.
Guitar Hero: World Tour - that funky music
Opinions are sure to be split on Guitar Hero: World Tour's new instrument replicas - particularly the series' first attempt at a drum kit - but we were pleasantly surprised with the title's surprisingly authentic set-up.
The percussion kit features snare drums, two toms, an elevated ride and crash cymbals - all velocity sensitive to boot, so the harder you hit, the louder the beat. Guitar Hero: World Tour's guitars now feature a touch-sensitive "slider" in their necks, allowing the players to perform pitch shifts on sustained notes, or even strum on the slider for authentic tap-wah solos. While the slider isn't as responsive as the classic strummer, it's an innovative idea that, with some fine tuning, could prove itself an interesting aspect in future Guitar Hero installments.
One of the biggest hooks of Guitar Hero: World Tour is undoubtedly its beefy Music Creator which comes in three parts: the Recording Studio, GHMix, and GHTunes. In the Recording Studio, up to four players can jam together, recording songs on the fly. While the initial recording is easy enough, it's a bit of a pain to navigate the Studio, from rewinding your song to pausing the entire experiment in order to change settings, tempos and styles.
Thankfully, you're given much more in-depth access in GHMix, where you take your track-in-progress to the mixing boards, adding in or deleting separate notes, copying and pasting certain selections, setting loop areas, or if you so desire, step recording the entire song from the ground up. Once your track is complete you're given the option to publish it directly into GHTunes: an online community where you can share your creations with other rockers from across the globe and download projects from various amateur musicians.
While we can see some amazing potential with the GHTunes application, from classic video game tunes recreated and shared to the inevitable flood of Rick Rolls, this is really where the community aspect of Guitar Hero: World Tour will have to come into play before we can call it a success or flop. While we can't really remark on how successful GHTunes is going to be in these early days it's obvious that if users give the creation tools the proper time and care they require, World Tour's Music Creator has the potential to become something truly special.
While Guitar Hero: World Tour may not play like the melt-your-face experience many gamers had hoped for, it still proves itself as a fantastically fun music simulation that remains a blast to play whether you get the entire band together for musical dominance or tackle your climb to rock stardom on solo.
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