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Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock Review

Prepare to have your socks rocked clean off

And so, Guitar Hero III gets our coveted Gold Award; but it very nearly didn't. It's not that the game's visually deficient (which, compared to its PS3 and 360 cousins, it definitely is) or that the new gameplay additions are, for the most part, pretty rubbish. No, our real problem with Guitar Hero III lies with developer Neversoft now being the bouncers checking the guest list at this particular rock club - a fact that will leave many newcomers to the series finding things rather tough going.

Of course, it's also fair to say that Neversoft has done an incredible job of picking up the pieces that the original creator of the series, Harmonix, left behind. Yes, the graphics aren't amazing but then they never needed to be and, to be fair, there are some great examples of lip and rhythm synching on display that only improve the general atmosphere. The inclusion of online play is also a major boon, as is the ability to play Career mode co-operatively. Plus, the actual guitar controller is a thing of beauty.

Click to view larger image

Rock And/Or Roll

Throw in a great line-up of songs that mixes rock, blues, metal and more and it seems that the game can do no wrong. It's as great as it ever was, aside from some minor bumps that thankfully can be ignored when you've finished them for the first time (*cough* boss battles *cough*). But then, we have to raise our initial point again - just as Neversoft has turned the Tony Hawk series from a celebration of skateboarding into a combo-hungry point orgy suitable only for hardcore fans over the years, so the same has happened to Guitar Hero III.

It's not that the game's impossible, but it's certainly harder than it was. Even on medium, songs such as Raining Blood or Through The Fire And The Flames throw button presses at you with such random ferocity, that they're almost impossible to all but the initiated. For the GH faithful, that's great but for everyone else, it's almost enough to make you throw down your Gibson in despair. Has the gate of accessibility closed on the world's most enjoyable party game then? To a degree, yes. It's not the end of the world but

you need to be warned that Guitar Hero III isn't the noob-friendly rockfest it once was.


25 comments so far...
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  1. MikeB Friday 18th Jan 2008 at 18:36

    I don't think your comment on GH3 being too hard for newcomers is fair.
    I've never played a Guitar Hero game before (bar once or twice in Gamestation) and I'm currently half way through Hard mode on Career.

    Saying TTFAF on normal is pretty hard... Obviously, It's one of those "mental" songs.
    But with practice the game certainly is not too hard.
    And there's an easy mode for the newcomers :wink:
    That's where I started off. Finished that and I was bale to get through Medium with ease. Finished that and I'm getting through hard pretty easily too.

    Just gotta practice. The fact that the difficulty setting has made it get a lower score than it should have is stupid.

  2. Luke Elton Sunday 20th Jan 2008 at 11:45

    I personally enjoy the boss battles, they add a bit of variety to the game and are fun to play in my opinion. The game may be a bit hard for newcomers (such as myself) at first, but with practice anyone can improve. I agree with MikeB, points shouldn't be knocked off for the difficulty.

  3. Anonymous Tuesday 29th Jan 2008 at 20:49

    :lol: i think it is a good thing it gets difficult becous it is more challenging

  4. jonowev Saturday 2nd Feb 2008 at 11:02

    I was pleased with the difficulty. Hard is, as the name suggests, hard. Practice and it's not impossible. GH3 must be one of the 5 best Wii games out.

  5. Anonymous Wednesday 27th Feb 2008 at 18:09

    I had never played a Guitar Hero game before, but I found it quite simple and I'm now nearly finished career mode on hard - I don't understand why you think it's very difficult... :shock:

  6. Benacious-D Friday 29th Feb 2008 at 09:07

    if i was to suggest the game of the year besides smash bros. it would be GH3

  7. 13david3 Sunday 2nd Mar 2008 at 12:24

    i saw this game on south park it was funny !!!!

    bye :D :D :shock:

  8. frenchdude785 Sunday 2nd Mar 2008 at 19:56

    I have played guitar hero 3 on expert and got 90% ROCK ON!!!!! 8) :D :wink: :P

  9. my mario box Saturday 8th Mar 2008 at 12:07

    I have natural talent fo this game... i got perfect on medium in game when it was like near the end of the game

  10. rolinfunder9 Saturday 8th Mar 2008 at 21:37

    iv never even held a guitar, but iv got a good sense of rythmn and this was a piece of p**s, + it was cheaper than its xbox and ps3 rivals

  11. Anonymous Monday 17th Mar 2008 at 15:18

    You complained about it being too difficult? That's ridiculous, I thought you guys knew the value of difficulty! Games are far too easy these days, sure it might be a party game, but this is Rock, and Rock is an intense musical genre. It's only fair that it comes strapped with an intense difficulty level.

  12. Psilocybin Thursday 20th Mar 2008 at 06:23

    This is the first version of GH I have ever played, or owned and I think it rocks.. I've nearly cleared it on Hard mode, which is aptly named :P
    Some of my friends are really daunted by it when they come over and see it being played on hard, but after a few plays on easy they can usually have some fun on medium :)
    Highly recommended.

  13. Zero Gravity Sunday 23rd Mar 2008 at 23:41

    I'm a newbie at GHIII, but I seemed to grasp it pretty quick. I'm probably not as good, or ever will be, as good as people who have played GHI & GHII, but I'm still fairly awesome at it. :D

    BTW, I'm about 93% through Hard Career, and 40% through Expert Career.

  14. Zio144 Monday 24th Mar 2008 at 12:01

    This is my first GH game and i was fine with it, I started off on easy and I was fine, soo I have no idea what you mean its not noob friendle.

  15. jamieharg Friday 28th Mar 2008 at 14:47

    It's not too difficult. Just practise.

    More importantly though, how come no-one is commenting on the fact that the Wii edition doesn't have Stereo sound?!

    We have been short-changed and Activision have still not sorted this out for us. Strangely, ONM have not commented on this in the magazine (or I've not seen it)and there is no reference to it on their website. Are they trying to pretend that nothing is wrong, or are they not interested in this title because Mario or Sonic are not in it?

  16. abatan Thursday 3rd Apr 2008 at 10:20

    i have got 4 words 4 most of u


  17. ThatguitarHero Friday 11th Apr 2008 at 18:23

    Personally i think guitar battles are pretty sweet but i was a bit upset that after you beat the opposing guitarist he excepts you being better that him instead of a big fight involving 2 guitars a pit of mud and a fight to the death......

  18. amaranth Friday 25th Apr 2008 at 15:55

    i cant believe you marked this down because of difficulty
    before this, the only time i'd been on guitar hero was on medium at a friends house on a couple of occasions, and most of the time i failed.

    within the friday night the game was released i finished medium
    and by sunday id got up to the 7th set of hard.
    a week later i was at the 8th set of expert, bearing in mind that during this time i was still at school 5 days a week.

    sure the game does have some hard bits, but as has already been mentioned, all it takes is practice and this game becomes far more enjoyable as you get the feeling of satisfaction everytime you get pash osh 1 or can clear the intro of dragonforce.

    on the note of dragonforce, when i first got the game i thought id never be able to do it
    now an average run is 85-88% notes hit on expert

    so back to the point, practice is all it takes, and games need to be more challenging these days anyway.
    even mario galaxy was ridiculously easy, id finished it with mario in 2 days, and not long after it was completed again, leaving me fairly disappointed that that was it and i feel that i cant go back to it to beat anything

  19. dragon2s6 Monday 28th Apr 2008 at 19:21

    Agreed. This game shouldn't have been put down just because it's too hard...which it isn't.

    The difficulty is fine. Personally I'm stuck on Cydonia on Hard but Practise can solve this kind of problem.

    The fact is anyone can play Guitar Hero III on Easy. So if ONM think people will have problems with the difficulty, tell them to go on Easy.

    Now that the game hasn't got a deserving review, and with so many games with a higher percentage - people aren't going to be buying this as much as they may have done if ONM had given it a fair percentage.

    Other people are missing out mow...

    And about the boss battles. I think they're great. :D

  20. 94paulm Saturday 28th Jun 2008 at 12:23

    This game is just AWESOME even though it is Ł70 its so worth the money, it provides months of fun and unleashing your inner rock star 8) :P :wink:

  21. tarka10 Wednesday 6th Aug 2008 at 12:01

    Can you also download songs for GH on wii or is that just for Ps3 and Xbox aswell?

  22. george best Tuesday 12th Aug 2008 at 17:59

    i was thinking of getting this game but is it worth it?

    is it worth its gold award?

  23. DBZFan355 Friday 26th Dec 2008 at 12:37

    OMG HELP! Ive got a choice of buying this, On Tour or On Tour Decades! Which should I pick>

  24. DBZFan355 Friday 26th Dec 2008 at 12:37

    OMG HELP! Ive got a choice of buying this, On Tour or On Tour Decades! Which should I pick?

  25. danny18 Friday 9th Oct 2009 at 09:39

    I was on the internet last friday and i went on the hmv website. I looked through the sales and there it was, Guitar Hero III Legends of Rock for Ł29.99, Wireless Guitar Controller included!!! How about that, a 90% game for Ł30! Lol, lol and lol again!

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