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POSTED 24/2/10


GUITAR HERO: VAN HALEN

Activision
PS3 (also on Xbox 360, Wii, PS2)

Everybody wants some. Sans the two exclamation marks that creep in as a Van Halen song title and muttered dejectedly like John Cusack did in ’80s wonder-flick Better Off Dead, it kinda sums up the whole Guitar Hero thang. Everybody wants their piece of the pie – and Activision seemingly want more helpings than there are servings.

So, a reasonably popular and enduring hair metal act now gets their own edition of GH. Well, it’s theirs in name, but there are 25 songs by them and 19 by others as diverse as Weezer and Queen, The Clash and Judas Priest. Meanwhile, Fountains of Wayne may reckon Stacy’s Mom’s got it goin’ on, but we have to go all Marvin and ask “what’s goin’ on?” with that particular inclusion...

Ignoring these irrelevancies to the title as advertised, there’s also much historical revisionism goin’ on. Like the dedicated Aerosmith and Metallica games before this, you can play guitar, bass, drums or tonsils with representative band member avatars. But as long as they’re current day Dave, Eddie, Alex and heir (hair?) apparent Wolfgang (seriously Eddie, who the fuck calls their son Wolfgang?). Significant parts of the band’s history – say, Sammy Hagar - just don’t exist, and you have to plough through more cock rock than a schlock jock’s iPod dock to unlock more familiar hairy ‘80s examples. Sadly, Wolfgang doesn’t become the spermatozoa he should be, flip-flopping about the stage.

So, it’s all Dave Lee Roth era stuff, but myopia doesn’t just extend to the song choices. All the yummy new features from Guitar Hero V that gave the franchise a necessary kick up the clacker ain’t here, as ain’t (urk!) any fan bits and bobs like those that added something for the passionate within GHs Aerosmith and Metallica.

Meh, everybody wants some.

take me back to the start...

 



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ALL WRITTEN CONTENT COPYRIGHT © AMY FLOWER 2008-2017. GAME IMAGES COURTESY OF RESPECTIVE GAMES COMPANIES.