Game Night: Guitar Hero and Karaoke Party Revolution

Miscellaneous G™’s love of non-standard console gaming controllers continues, and on Wednesday night he brought his PlayStation 2 over to the Kasa KJToo and we played Guitar Hero and Karaoke Revolution Party.

Guitar Hero features a guitar controller that has five color-coded fret buttons, a whammy bar and a wedge-shaped toggle that can be “strummed” up and down. You play the guitarist in band playing venues that range from garages to sold-out ampitheaters. As the music plays, notes scroll along an on-screen fret bar, and you press the appropriate fret buttons and hit the string toggle in time with the music. Hit the notes just right and the audience loves you, miss a note and you’ll hear a discordant twang and the audience will react accordingly. Songs range from relatively easy (Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water”) to damn-near impossible (Pantera’s “Cowboys from Hell”). To keep things interesting, each song can be played at four different difficulty levels.

Karaoke Revolution Party has a USB microphone and plays very much like a karaoke machine. The difference here is that the PS2 is able to tell whether or not you’re on pitch. Your score is based on whether or not you’re singing the song well. Karaoke Revolution Party allows players to build their own singer from a wide array of body, face, wardrobe and accessory options. While I belted out A-Ha’s “Take On Me” and Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline,” my on-screen persona (a busty, bespectacled redhead named Shayla) sang along with me. On the former, my recording hit platinum; on the latter, I managed only gold.

Both games are ridiculously fun, but I think I enjoyed Guitar Hero a little more. It’s as fun to watch as it is to play (some songs, like Megadeth’s “Symphony of Destruction” are a blast to watch). The big advantage with Guitar Hero is that you’re not limited by your vocal range as you might be in Karaoke Revolution Party.

And there was much rocking out. And it was good.