previews\ Jun 1, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Guitar Hero 5 - PS3 - Preview

E3 2009 PreviewE3 2008 GameZone Previews

The very franchise name, Guitar Hero, symbolizes a revolution in rhythm-based games as well a series of games that have met with phenomenal success. So, how do you build on that? Well, when you are Neversoft, the current developer behind the game (and the dev studio that took the title from a guitar-based game to a band-based sensation), it’s easy – you build on what is already in place with a song list that will span the generations and give players more options.

For the first time, the franchise will feature Party Play, a multiplayer mode that allows other players to drop in or out, or even play the same instruments. You can play as four guitarists? You can now do it. But hey, that’s not all that has been tweaked. The Music Studio has been streamlined a bit to make the experience more accessible for first-time users.

But if you have played the game, you know that everything begins with the song list and GH5 has the most varied songlist in the history of the franchise, with more than 20 bands represented. According to a recent press release: “Guitar Hero 5 features the strongest, most varied set list to-date comprised of master tracks from 85 of the hottest bands of today and the biggest classic acts including; Kings of Leon, The Rolling Stones, The White Stripes, Santana, Vampire Weekend, Tom Petty, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, plus more than 25 artists from a variety of music genres that will be making their music video game debut.”

To make it all even sweeter, all songs will be unlocked from the get-go.

Players can also expect a more prominent role for downloadable content after the game releases.

Other new additions include RockFest, which is a new competitive experience, as well as Band Moments in which bands can receive special rewards for nailing song elements. Then there are the song challenges that will challenge players to play through a song in a specific way.

Activision showed off the game at a pre-E3 event held in Los Angeles and while the game was only shown as a live demo (well, with a Neversoft quartet demonstrating some of the new features) there seems to be a lot to get excited about with the next edition in the franchise.

In the overall scheme of things, GH5 is not a new beast, but it does feature significant improvements and additions that are bound to make it a title that winds up on a lot of gamers’ wish lists.

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