Sometimes we are graced by a spout of good luck, often at the expense of some bad luck upon someone else. This week, I have been lucky enough to have an unlucky friend who bought Guitar Hero World Tour but suffered from the Red Ring of Death earlier this week. So lucky me managed to borrow the game along with the new guitar peripheral from him until Microsoft send him back a fresh virgin 360. Until then ofcourse, I shall be keeping his guitar warm.
And kept it warm I have.
If you have read any of previous posts on the whole Guitar Hero and Rock Band series, you’ll that I get a bit obsessed and particular about which peripheral I use. I first used the Guitar Hero 2 controller (the beautiful X-plorer) and haven’t yet been tempted to splash out on a new controller. Well, that bit’s a lie really, but ignore the fact I bought a Rock Band controller. The fact remains that the GH3 controller was a battery munching monster and by my own experiences and those of close friends, are prone to breaking. The RB controller was different however. The solo buttons down the bottom and overall great aesthetics of the controller did turn my head. I bought the whole RB Kit but after a bit of playing, I felt disapointed with the controller. I’ve already written in depth in a previous post about my gripes with it so I’ll just point you in that direction rather than just quote myself.
Some of the biggest differences between the GH:WT controller and the Rock Band controller are very minor details. One massive difference is the click on the strum. I find this essentially useful as it makes counting through fast note patterns that little bit easier. But the main reason why I’ll soon be replacing my GH2 controller with the new World Tour one is that the sensor pad (similar to the RB solo buttons) is fucking excellent. The Rock Band solo buttons really are the only comparable alternative and are spanked into submission by the World Tours pad. I’m not a huge fan of the solo buttons anyway and was almost completely put off of the idea because of the Rock Band controller. But using these buttons in sections on World Tour is simply graceful. They don’t require you to touch overly aggressively and let you slide about reasonably well. Although the amount of times you’ll be using the pad is another question.
My advice is simple. If you are planning on buying into the whole GH/RB culture, then just go for the WT kit. The drums have more pads than the RB kit and are backwards compatable to RB and RB2. The guitar also works fine on RB and certainly looks alot nicer than the RB equivelent. What I also recommend however is that you get Rock Band and Rock Band 2. The set list on Guitar Hero: World Tour is somewhat underwhelming and doesn’t contain any real replayable great songs. The UI is also sloppy in comparison to Rock Band and the Star Power management in GH:WT is well off par. The replayability of WT doesn’t look promising (although I still need to mess about with song creation), especially if you put it up against the mammoth song list Harmonix now has.
Harmonix has won the software war, but Activision know how to do peripherals (finally anyway).