Friday, October 26, 2007

Guitar Hero III vs Rock Band

Update (10/27): This just in from IGN's latest playtest session.. So as of right now, the Les Paul Guitar Hero 3 controller apparently DOES work on RB. However, on the flip side, the Fender Strat Rock Band guitar DOES NOT work on GH3. My guess is that this was an intentional, lockout move on Activision/Red Octane's part. It makes business sense that they'd allow their controller to work with other games, yet not vice-versa. But underhanded moves like this are rarely accepted by the gaming industry with open arms. I really hope this comes back to bite them in the ass. Karma, karma, karma..

I was gonna write a diplomatic bit about how Guitar Hero III and Rock Band are both equally good, but with the recent news circulating, Guitar Hero III has lost my vote entirely. If you're somewhat confused right now, I'll try to straighten things out for you.

In the beginning, the rock gods known as Harmonix, developed the Guitar Hero games and Red Octane published the ridiculously popular series for them. After making a retarded amount of money from the sequel, Red Octane was acquired by Activision and they went on to create the next Guitar Hero sequel, GHIII. Meanwhile, Harmonix partnered up with MTV and began work on the multi-instrument follow-up game, Rock Band. This month, the stage is set for both of these guitar games to come out, and go head-to-head "Battle of the Bands" style.

Now both games have their strengths and weaknesses. Guitar Hero III is really all about a great guitar experience with a top-notch song set. Rock Band is promising to deliver a much broader experience with the extra inclusion of the drums and microphone. I had thought (actually everyone on the Internets had thought) that either guitar controller would work with either game. But apparently, Activision and Red Octane are keeping the Guitar Hero III peripheral in a more proprietary state. In contrast, Harmonix has stated that they are abiding by the open standards set forth by Sony and Microsoft (you know, for all those other guitar games out there).

In other words, Activision and Red Octane are a bunch of greedy, money grubbing bastards that wanna force people to choose between one game or the other. Fuck you Red Octane. Fuck you Activision. Fuck you Neversoft for letting your publishers force us consumers into that decision. It's bad enough a guitar game costs over $100 now, but to have to buy two separate bundles containing plastic guitar controllers is nothing less than a travesty. A travesty that must be avenged! The bizarre part of this convoluted mess, is that EA, Rock Band's publisher, seems more likely to pull this kind of crap on us. Well, if there's already a Rock Band 2 out nine months from now, you can be sure I'll be back bitching and moaning about the situation again.

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