Cary Gordon, a.k.a. Evil C, co-Host of Metal Injection Radio's MSRCast sent in this review…
With the brand new Guitar Hero game out on the shelves, Activision has another hit on their hands, no matter how good the game is. Pure money they are printing on these game disks. The new installment is the first in the entire series to spotlight one particular band, and the lucky winner to be chosen first is Aerosmith. Is Aerosmith still relevant in this day and age? Of course, they still play some balls to the walls hard rocking fun tunes, albeit with a few pit stops in their career. Does anyone remember "I Don't Wanna Miss A Thing", or whatever Celine Dion leftover they sang for that Armageddon movie? Praise be to the metal gods that this song is NOT included in this game…one of the high points for me.
If you have played Guitar Hero 3, then you will know exactly what you are getting yourself in for. This is basically an expansion pack to that game, with a little bit of spit and shine to some of the graphics and character design. I really hate the character model they used for the singer in the aforementioned game. They do a really good job of capturing the likeness of the band members, and getting all their signature moves down entirely. But game wise, this is basically the same game, which could be a good thing or a bad thing, just depends on your point of view.
Fortunately for the designers, they let the band pick out some choice tracks for inclusion in their game, which really helps with the monotony of playing a straight game of only one artist.Handpicked by the band, as either influences on their style, or hell, bands they just admire. Among the chosen few are Cheap Trick, Mott The Hoople, the Kinks, Ted Nugent, Stone Temple Pilots, Lenny Kravitz, and Run D.M.C. Yeah, you read that right. There is none higher, all you sucker MC's shall call him Sire. That Run D.M.C. "King Of Rock" is included, and there is a hell of a lot of guitar wankery going on in that track. And don't worry, because the Run D.M.C. version of Walk This Way is included, as well as the original Aerosmith version as an unlockable.
The Aerosmith tracks that you play through are a hit and miss for me. While they included some of the classics, in my opinion, like "Draw The Line", "Nobody's Fault", "Mama Kin", and "Back In The Saddle", they also throw in a few clunkers that really slow the game down to slow pace. Maybe I'm not the biggest die hard Aerosmith fan out there, and that is why I don't know some of the tracks included, but truth be known, about 98 percent of the people that are going to play this game are only aware of Aerosmith because of "Love In An Elevator" or the similar ilk, which are included here in a small dosage. I kept waiting for "Janie Got A Gun" to appear, and lo and behold, it didn't. Even in the bunch of songs you can unlock from the store in the game, which basically a handful of Aerosmith songs, and a few songs from Joe Perry and his solo band. Meh.
So, let's really get down to the meat and potatoes of this game, how does it play? I'll admit it right here, I am a medium career kind of guy. Once they start throwing in the 5th fret, I usually lose my fingering capabilities alltogether. So, I was able to complete the medium career in a fairly short amount of time, and get a lot of achievement points. Of course, I was playing the Xbox 360 version, just because there are achivement points, and not from any kind of technical advantage. Im just an achievement junkie. It really plays like the last Guitar Hero game, as far as guitar goes, Guitar Hero is just damn fun to play. The chord progressions, and the notes you hit are set up in an exciting way, and you don't really get bored. The challenge gets progressively stronger during the later tiers of songs, and you actually feel a little bit of an accomplishment at the ending, and want to push yourself further in a harder mode. If that is the premise of a good game, then Guitar Hero: Aerosmith will definitely appease your guitar playing fantasies until Guitar Hero 4 and Rock Band 2 release later in the year. Slightly more than just an expansion, and slightly less than a full game, while it could be a little bit cheaper with that said, this is still a fun game to play, and the little additions to the game engine is a welcome addition. Activision is on the right track after stumbling at the starting gate, but at the end of the day, I will always return to my Rock Band for the time being, just because there are drums in the game. Until Guitar Hero 4 that is.
3 skulls out of 5