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Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock Preview

Nick_Tan By:
Nick_Tan
08/05/10
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE Music 
PLAYERS  
PUBLISHER Activision 
DEVELOPER Neversoft 
RELEASE DATE  
T Contains Lyrics, Mild Fantasy Violence, Mild Suggestive Themes

What do these ratings mean?

Let our rock powers combine!


Punk! Grunge! Heavy Metal! Psychedelic! Glam! Ska! Hair! Alternative! Goooooo Rock'N'Roll! By your powers combined, I am Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock!

click to enlargeIf that Captain Planet analogy doesn't tell you how different Warriors of Rock is to Rock Band 3, let alone the rest of the Guitar Hero franchise, then I don't know what to tell you other than "VERY, VERY MUCH"... while I smash a guitar over your head. Okay, I'm lying a bit. It's still the same Guitar Hero that you know and love (or hate or don't care for) - the same instruments, the same capsules, the same characters, the same techniques, the same almost everything.

But after creating so many Guitar Hero titles in the last few years, the developers at Neversoft decided that the formula just isn't going to cut it anymore. So they thought outside of the box, out the door, up into the sky, and into the cosmos to create something that can only be vaguely described as "Guitar Quest".

Once upon a time, The Demigod of Rock fought against The Beast, but lost. His power alone was not enough, and he retreated into a dark, lost cave to recuperate (while feeling the shame of epic failing). However, he needs the strength of eight heroes to return to full strength. So who better to become the heroes than the likes of Axel Steel, Johnny Napalm, and Pandora? Unbeknownst to them, a secret power lies dormant within each guitar hero (see what I did there?), and it's your job to awaken their potential and transform them into Warriors of Rock.

Each character already has part of their powers unlocked, which is probably why they're rock superstars to begin with. Johnny Napalm has the power of not only maintaining at least a x2 multiplier no matter how many errors you make, but also earning more stars if you maintain your note streak. Axel Steel can resurrect you if you fail out of a song, and Casey Lynch can cast a shield to protect your note streak and health. Once you earn enough stars in each character's setlist, they will mutate into rock-tastic forms, like Zombie Napalm and Mummy Steel, who have enhanced versions of their original abilities.

click to enlargeAfter four characters have acquired their special forms, you can then revive the Demigod by completing all seven parts of the epic Rush odyssey '2112'. The Demigod then needs four more transformed characters before he returns to full strength, combining the powers of all eight rock warriors (see, told ya), and can battle The Beast again. After that is a list of legendary, insanely difficult songs that need to be completed before they are unlocked in normal play.

Otherwise, Warriors of Rock has everything that Guitar Hero 5 had: party play, the ability to choose whatever instrument you want, a character creation mode, a slew of multiplayer modes, and a career mode where you can unlock clothing and accessories for your created characters by leveling up. With 90+ songs on the list and nearly all the DLC songs from Guitar Hero World Tour and 5 being compatible, the setlist for Warriors of Rock is staggering and has been reworked to focus more on the guitar.

That said, the "Guitar Quest" aspect has gotten me at least interested in a series that has long since been dumped in "the usual" attic in my mind. But now it may be time to dust it off and give it another chance. Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock will arrive this September on PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii.

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