Guitar Hero III Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | Wii
Guitar Hero III box art
System: X360, PS2, PS3, Wii Review Rating Legend
Dev: NeverSoft 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Red Octane, Activision 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Oct. 28, 2007 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-2 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Teen 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

The game is quite obviously geared towards Guitar Hero veterans, yet on easy mode new players will find it possible to get used to the gameplay before kicking it up a few notches. Rockers of all skill levels should be forewarned: a few solid hours of playing Legend of Rock on higher difficulty settings - especially as you progress deeper into the main portion of the game - will turn your finger muscles into soup.

Guitar Hero III screenshot

In terms of graphics, the Wii version is fairly weak in comparison to the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions. They still look pretty good, and in the end it won't matter much unless you're watching from the sidelines. Honestly, who buys a Guitar Hero game to look at the pretty visuals in the background? Legends of Rock does incorporate some fun animated cut-scenes in between tiers of songs which provide a bit of as story - albeit scant at best - as your band works its way from backyard gigs, to record deals, and onward to hell for the final showdown.

The addition of a battle mode is a wonderful step in the right direction, but there's room for improvement. As you build battle power (works similarly to star power) you can execute a guitar chop to unleash one of many attacks to mess up your opponent. You can break one of their strings, temporarily increase their difficulty, overload their amp, hit them with a lefty flip, and even steal their power-ups, among other nasty moves. This aspect is a lot of fun in multi-player battles, however, the developers would have done well to include some additional unlockable celebrity guitarists to fight against in the single-player campaign. In career mode, you'll face off in shred fests against Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine and Slash from Guns and Roses in original compositions. Players are forced to beat them before the song ends or they'll hit you with a face melting solo that will put you down for the count. You'll also run into good old Lou at the end. The dweller among the fires of hell puts up a good fight but he doesn't really count as a well-known guitarist. This is Legends of Rock after all, so it would have been nice if there were more legends to rock against.

Guitar Hero III screenshot

Battle mode, a co-op multiplayer campaign, online competition, and eventual downloadable content is going to stretch the game a lot further for a lot of players. The main game, however, is already amazing in and of itself. You'll easily spend months playing through the different difficulty setting to unlock new tracks, guitars, playable characters, and other excellent features. The song selection is so good you'll be going back to re-play your favorites long after you've exhausted the voluminous amount of un-lockable content. Despite a few minor adjustments here and there, Legends of Rock is still 100 percent pure Guitar Hero action through and through. New developers Neversoft have done an excellent job of carrying on the torch, electing not to mess too much with the core gameplay. It's unconscionable to let this one sit on the store shelf if you own a Wii. What are you waiting for?

By Nathan Meunier
CCC Freelance Writer

Features:

  • Become a Legend. Face off against guitar icon Slash and others in insane boss battles featuring original tracks recorded exclusively for Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock.
  • Rock Out. Defeat opponents to achieve legendary status in head-to-head competition including the all new guitar battle or share the glory with a friend in the new co-op career mode.
  • Fully Immersive Concert Experience. Realize a true rock concert experience with all new venues, incredible lighting effects, authentic instruments, and sick character moves.
  • Incredible Soundtrack. Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock features over 70 of the biggest and loudest songs ever compiled in a game! Rock out to songs such as: Welcome to the Jungle, Rock You Like a Hurricane, Sabotage, Suck My Kiss, Cherub Rock, and Mississippi Queen.
  • Utilize the motion sensor of the Wii Remote to execute star power solos and battle mode attacks with wireless controls.
  • Screen Resolution: Up to 480p (Progressive Scan, Widescreen).

    RATING OUT OF 5
    RATING DESCRIPTION
    3.8
    Graphics
    The Wii version just doesn't pack the same power as the other consoles, yet the visuals are still quite solid and entertaining.
    4.8
    Control
    It's freaking hard. It's hellishly addictive. It will destroy your hands. It's awesome.
    4.9
    Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
    The huge number of original recordings is a major improvement. A few of the covers are a bit off, but overall there's no lack of rock to be found.
    4.6

    Play Value
    Even once you've played it all through numerous times there's still plenty of reasons to go back and play it all over again. Wii purists will rejoice at the ability to finally own a Guitar Hero game for a Nintendo console.

    4.6
    Overall Rating - Must Buy
    Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.
  • Screenshots / Images
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