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Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock
Available for Wii, PS2, PS3, Xbox 360, PC
Version reviewed: PS2
ESRB rating: T

The Guitar Hero series has been very successful and this title is a great addition to the series as well as the largest one yet. There are over 70 great music tracks and the game has been cleaned up a bit in the appropriateness area as well. Guitar Hero 3 has a few noticeable changes. The cut scenes are all animated giving this game a different look and feel. Musically, in many cases you get to be a part of the original tracks and not a cover band performing them instead.

How do I play?


This game is the most fun when using the guitar controllers; you can buy these games with or without the controllers. The basic game play goes as follows. You have different colored fret bars on the guitar and when you see a colored note line up on the bottom you have to strum and press the corresponding colored fret bar. It takes some coordination and getting used to but it’s pretty easy to pick up. There are three tutorials that will show you the basics, how to gain and use star power (extra points and special moves), and advance techniques. I highly recommend watching them if you’re new to this game.

Which version is the best to get?


Each version of the game offers some advantages. The Wii version uses the Wii remote for connectivity, giving it rumble and making it automatically wireless. The Xbox 360 and PS3 versions allow for downloadable content, as well as higher resolution graphics, though that makes little difference in a music game. All of the newer system versions (PS3, Xbox 360, Wii) allow for competitive online play. The PS2 version doesn’t offer much other than saving you money if you already own a couple of guitars from the previous titles. Otherwise, they are all basically the same game.

What songs are there?

The songs vary in era from the 1960’s to 2007. There are many classics like Paint it Black, Welcome to the Jungle, Black Magic Woman, Hit Me With Your Best Shot, Sunshine Of Your Love, Suck My Kiss, Devil Went Down To Georgia, and more. Some of the bands include Santana, Kiss, Guns N Roses, Metallica, Tenacious D, Weezer, Poison, Rolling Stones, Red Hot Chili Peppers and many more. As you can see there is a lot of variety and something to please everyone.

Game Modes

Single Player:

Quick Play- Just pick up a guitar and play a song. Your song library grows as you unlock or purchase more songs in career mode.

Career Mode-This is the heart and soul of the game. In career mode you work up your small time band into the spotlight, even catching the attention of some guitar greats such as Tom Morello and Slash, who will challenge you in boss battles. The last boss battle is against the devil himself who goes by Lou. As you advance in this game it allows you to unlock songs for quick play mode.

Multiplayer- Battle and Co-op Career Mode
Battle Mode and Career Co-Op modes are both new to Guitar Hero 3. The Co-Op career mode offers some songs that single player career mode does not. Battle Mode allows you to send attacks to your opponent by twitching your guitar like you would for Star power. The attacks work best when you send a couple of them at a time.

Graphics

Guitar Hero 3 has a whole new look and feel to it. The cut-scenes/story videos are all animated. The character models resemble the ones from previous games in the series. Many feel that the characters look better in the previous titles. The females look more skanky and the lead singer\'s mouth is huge! You can customize their wardrobe by buying different outfits for them. The levels are each unique and have a lot of detail, though you spend most of your time looking at your fret bar and the notes coming your way. Unlike the previous titles, I did not notice any slow downs.

Sound

The music and sound effects are great. It’s nice to hear the original band master tracks instead of a cover band all of the time. The song variety is great and offers something for almost everyone.

Appropriateness


I was impressed with how this game has been “toned down” from the previous titles. The main theme of this game is to save your soul by playing guitar and ultimately duking it out with the Devil (Lou) himself. The songs you\'ll be playing are hard rock and are by no means honoring God.  While some of the songs have suggestive themes, songs that have swearing in them have the curse words faded out in this game. An example that covers both of those mentioned is Suck My Kiss. There are references to swearing in some of the text but it’s represented by symbols. I was happy to see the pentagrams were removed from Iggy Spark’s fret board. On the other hand, they made Iggy look a bit more flamboyant than in the previous games, especially with the goofy peacock outfit you can buy for him. Also some of the female guitarists have tight and revealing clothing, probably more so than with the previous games. There are also ‘devil’s horns’ hand gestures in abundance, but that is fairly mild compared to pentagrams in my opinion. Some of the songs talk about the number of the beast and the anti-christ. God\'s name is taken in vain in "Welcome To The Jungle". As a whole, it still has problems, but I think they are less than Guitar Hero 2, for example.

Final Thoughts

This is probably my favorite title in the Guitar Hero series. Not only does it have less occult references (if you discount Lou a.k.a. the devil), it has a great selection of songs and bands. Some of the songs/bands still have suggestive themes so it’s not exactly squeaky clean. If that doesn’t bother you, and you like hard rock/heavy metal, then I’m sure you’ll find this a great addition to any music lover’s console/PC game library.

Final Ratings
Game Play 19/20
Graphics 8/10
Sound 10/10
Stability 5/5
Controls 5/5
Appropriateness 39.5/50
Minor Swear Words –2
Revealing Clothing –3.5
God\'s name in vain - 5
Final Score: 86.5%
 
{pgomakase} 
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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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