Guitar Hero 2, part two: The bootleg
I'm suffering from a rawk hangover today. While Frank was doing his text-message frenzy thing last night, I was at home fake-jamming 'til the wee hours on "Stairway to Heaven" and Metallica's "Master of Puppets" on a hacked version of Guitar Hero 2.
The next version of the hit title Guitar Hero isn't due until March, when publisher Activision is scheduled to roll out the first version of the game for the Xbox 360. But crazed tinkerers and fans have figured out how to crack the game open and insert their own song choices on the latest PlayStation 2 version of the game. As many Post readers already know, I'm a big fan of the game.
Poke around online and you can find new, homebrewed Guitar Hero tracks with songs from bands like AC/DC and Pink Floyd, which aren't featured on either version of the official game. The version of Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb" was a blast and I haven't even gotten to other goodies like Van Halen's "Hot for Teacher" or Lynyrd Skynrd's "Sweet Home Alabama" yet.
Getting this thing to work is a bit of a chore unless you have a geeky friend with the time and knowhow to perform some techno-magic with a "modded" PlayStation that has been souped up to read homemade, burned disks. (Thanks, Daniel!)
If this hacked-up game were an official release from the real game's developer Harmonix, I might give it a thumbs down. It's a little clunky and there's the occasional crash. Sometimes the "notes" on these bootleg songs don't seem exactly right somehow, as they pretty much always do in the official version of the game. Sometimes the timing of the notes seems a little off. And in some songs, the guitar part doesn't drop out at all when you don't play the corresponding note -- which sort of dampens the game's effectiveness as an enabler of the ol' "I'm a guitar god" fantasy.
But whatever. I don't have high hopes that Metallica is on the verge of letting game developers put their songs in a game like this. Until that happens, this will do fine.
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