More Reviews
REVIEWS Dark Souls II: Crown of the Sunk Review
I was confident in my Dark Souls abilities. Then From Software released new Dark Souls II DLC.

The Swapper Review
One of 2013's best indie games swaps its way to Sony platforms.
More Previews
PREVIEWS Pillars of Eternity Preview
For Obsidian's crowdfunded love letter to Infinity Engine games like Icewind Dale and Baldur's Gate, I was impressed by its willingness to pull back the curtain and let me see the machinery behind it.
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES CounterSpy
Release date: 08/19/14

Tales of Xillia 2
Release date: 08/19/14

Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare
Release date: 08/19/14

Madden NFL 15
Release date: 08/26/14


LATEST FEATURES Interview: Forging the Rings of Power in Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor
Tolkien fans may now either squeal with glee at getting to play interactive fanfiction... or condemn it to the watery grave of Numenor.

How Bioware Creates Romances
Bioware's games have romances where you might save the world, on the side of course.
MOST POPULAR FEATURES Picking Your Gender: 5 Industry Professionals Discuss Queer Identity in Gaming
Women from Naughty Dog, ArenaNet, Harmonix, and Gamespot unite to talk about what they want from games in terms of diversity.
 
Coming Soon

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP Kakulukia
Why Sunset Overdrive Can Go Suck A Lemon
By Kakulukia
Posted on 07/14/14
Yesterday, while cleaning up my media center, I found my copy of Ratchet & Clank: Into The Nexus, which I bought sometime before Christmas last year. I had been pretty excited about this game pre-release, what with it being the first "traditional", albeit shorter than usual,...

MEMBER BLOG

Ivory_Soul Ivory_Soul's Blog
PROFILE
Average Blog Rating:
[ Back to All Posts ]
The Rise and Fall of the Rythm Genre
Posted on Wednesday, December 28 2011 @ 00:51:54 Eastern

I remember playing Guitar Hero for the first time on PS2 and being amazed at how accurate it felt to play the guitar. Rocking out to classics like Cowboys from Hell, Godzilla, Ziggy Stardust, and other classic rock songs was like a dream come true. Guitar Hero got me to play the real guitar and actually move on. The feeling of beating your high score on Expert and finally getting through Bark at the Moon on Expert was pulse pounding and so satisfying. Walking away from that song shaking with my heart pounding was how any game in general should make you feel.

Then Guitar Hero II came along at a reasonable time, and I knew it was time to start a new with a whole new set of songs. GH2 proved to be better with more awesome songs and a longer track list, plus the addition of DLC when it came to Xbox 360 so what could go wrong? Nothing at that point with Freebird being the end song and proving 10 times more difficult than Bark at the Moon I would need a-whole-nother six months to master this beast. But by the time I got around to that Guitar Hero III was announced with music companies on board and finally giving Harmonix the original songs so I thought nothing could get better. Not only this, but real rock stars were jumping on board with avatars in-game, plus a whole slew of great indie songs.

I felt like I couldn't keep up at this point because after mastering GH2 I finally got GH3 about 6 months after it's release. With the huge price points and the guitars now starting to constantly change I felt the genre was going in the wrong direction aiming toward money and forgetting about letting us breathe and master these games which is what rhythm games were all about. By the time I mastered GH3 a little game called Rock Band was out that added the whole band set and by now my head was spinning because not only did I have to master the guitar, but vocals and drums too? I also had two different band series to master, but I pressed on and picked up my copy about 8 months after release.

Rock Band proved to be the more solid game with a huge down pour of downloadable songs that Activision couldn't keep up with in Guitar Hero III so I stuck with the new guy. Being a natural at drums was something I found out with Rock Band so a few short weeks I was pounding out songs on Expert and Hard with ease while struggling with the weird design of the Rock Band guitar. By now Activision announces Guitar Hero IV and includes the same instrument, but I blew this off for a while.

While completely ignoring the band set I just pick up the game and use the Rock Band drums to realize that the series has gone completely downhill because of the weak song selection and weird design of the whole game. By now I sit at my drum set thinking the whole genre has spiraled out of control...but it's not done yet. Rock Band 2 comes out and I quickly jump on board feeling grateful that maybe EA has the right idea with RB2 being way better than the first, so by now I have abandoned all hope for Guitar Hero and continue on with RB2 for a couple of years. As the years go on I hear about several Guitar Hero off shoots for Aerosmith, Van Helen, and other weird things that help bring down the beloved series. Guitar Hero 5 comes out and resurrects the series with a solid come back to the original and leaving the other instruments as options. I finally have faith in the series and enjoy the decent song list. Rock Band finally comes out with a third entry that finally reaches the ultimate goal of the rock rhythm genre: To be able to use a real guitar in the game, but it's too little to late. With the addition of keyboards and added cymbals on the drums it feels like the series is just a ghost and fails sales wise while Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock comes along and completely goes crazy with a big finale for the series because both Activision and Harmonix drop their franchises due to the lack of interest in the series.

In the background Activision releases DJ Hero to luke warm acclaim while releasing a sequel, but countless hell spawns such as Rock Revolution and Band Hero continue to kill the genre while the terrible portable versions of these series continue to smear the genre's name in vain. At this point in time (2008) the genre is just everywhere with Lego Rock Band, Rock Band on PSP, iPhone, Guitar Hero on Java enabled mobile phones, but while the last of the fireworks are exploding no one is paying attention, and thus the series dies in later 2010.

With all that said and done developers need to learn a lesson that a genre needs to be left alone and approached with caution because you can kill it in a few short years. Will the glory days of the first couple of Guitar Heroes ever come again? Probably not, but in the mean time take that guitar or drum set from the closet, dust it off, and rock out to your favorite tunes because what is here is all that will be here. We are now in the post-apocalyptic wasteland of the rhythm genre, so long live the king.

comments powered by Disqus

 
More On GameRevolution