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Guitar Hero III: It Will Rock You

Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock, the latest in the popular franchise, hits all the right notes.
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock, the latest in the popular franchise, hits all the right notes. (Activision/ign.com Photos)

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Friday, December 28, 2007

The makers of Guitar Hero, the popular musical game series, would have been crazy to change too much with Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock. Original Guitar Hero developer Harmonix was bought by MTV and makes Guitar Hero's competitor, Rock Band. Thankfully, new developer Neversoft retained Guitar Hero's core gameplay and added new features to make the experience even more addictive. If you like the series, you will love Guitar Hero III.

As with the other franchise titles, you listen to a song and hit one of five fret buttons while strumming the guitar bar to simulate a note. Play the song right and the crowd will love you. Miss too many notes and fans will boo you off the stage.

Song choice can make or break a game like this, and Guitar Hero III has that angle covered. The more than 70 tracks include "Hit Me With Your Best Shot," "Slow Ride," "Rock & Roll All Night," "Barracuda," "Cult of Personality," "Paint It Black," "Mississippi Queen" and "Black Magic Woman." Many songs are performed by cover bands, but the game features a few originals.

The biggest change in gameplay is the addition of famous "bosses" who need to be battled and beaten to move onto a new stage. You'll be ready to hit the next gig, and Tom Morello from Rage Against the Machine or Slash from Guns N' Roses will call you out. You must play one of their famous songs against them. You can attack by correctly playing certain notes to break their guitar strings, flip their notes or overload their amps. But they can do the same to you, and they take no prisoners. In the final battle, you square off against the Devil (named Lou) in the Charlie Daniels Band's fiddle classic "The Devil Went Down to Georgia." You probably can guess what happens if you lose.

The game experience varies slightly depending on the console as guitar controllers differ; the PlayStation2, Wii and Xbox 360 versions are all fun. This game is an encore you won't want to miss.

-- John Breeden II

Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock Teen; Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PC (XP, Vista), Mac ($50-$60 game only, $120-$200 for game and guitar, depending on platform and guitar type) Activision Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock Teen; Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PC (XP, Vista), Mac ($50-$60 game only, $120-$200 for game and guitar, depending on platform and guitar type) Activision


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