Review Guitar Hero: Metallica
By Adam Mang
When I first played Guitar Hero: World Tour, the game contained a video that announced Metallica was getting it’s own Guitar Hero game. Being a big fan of Metallica, and having become addicted to both Rock Band and Guitar Hero, I couldn’t wait to play the game. I’ve found the Guitar Hero games to be a little more metal than Rock Band, and you don’t get more metal than Metallica.
The game contains songs from all the albums from Metallica’s twenty-eight year career, including such classics as “Fade to Black”, “Master of Puppets”, and “Enter Sandman”. Songs from some of their favourite bands, (Slayer, Motorhead, Alice in Chains), and from some of the bands who influenced them, (Diamond Head, Thin Lizzy, and Evil), are also in the game. All the same game modes from the previous Guitar Hero games are in this one as well. The newest mode for the game is the double bass pedal mode for the drums on the expert level. This is the only mode I haven’t tried because I’m only a medium level drummer, but from what I’ve heard it’s very challenging. All the characters are back too, as well as the create your own character mode. Lemmy from Motorhead, and King Diamond from the band Mercyful Fate become unlocked after you complete their songs. The guys from Metallica become unlocked after completing all the instruments and singing career modes. They also let you choose if you want to play them as they looked in the 80’s or as zombies for some reason. The career mode storyline has you going to see Metallica in concert. After being inspired from seeing them perform, you decide to form your own band. When Metallica holds auditions for an opening act you make the cut. This is where the songs from other artists are played. Once you’ve completed a certain number of songs, you can play more Metallica songs.
The graphics for the game are better then previous GH games. All the guys from Metallica look good, and their customized guitars are also present in the game. Lars’ drum kit looks better than the drum kits from previous GH games. Different arenas from past Metallica tours are unlocked as you progress in the game. Arenas such as the Hammersmith Odeon in London, and the Meadowlands arena. The designers added little adjustments here and there to the graphics, but I find it makes the whole experience of playing the game close to actually seeing them in concert. For instance, before a song, you might get a guitar tech handing James Hetfield a new guitar, or James will ask the crowd how they’re feeling, and if they want the band to play something fast. The crowd is much more detailed. There is a lot of pyro going off before, during and after songs. During “Sad But True”, the camera shakes in unison with the opening drum beat and guitars. The sound of course is amazing. The mix of the band is fine, but I found it’d help if I turned up whatever instrument I was playing, to hear it a little better.
Guitar Hero: Metallica is by far the most challenging GH game to date, but it is also the funnest. Metallica have written some of the fastest, and technically demanding songs over the years, and it carries over into the game of course. I even had trouble on some of the older thrashier songs on the medium difficulty. With Hetfield being the best rythmn guitarist in metal, and Kirk Hammett as on of the best lead guiartists of all time, you’ll be in for quite the challenge on the harder difficulty levels. The bass lines and the drumming are no piece of cake either.
As I mentioned before, some of the little things the designers did for the game made it that much better. All the songs are already unlocked if you just want to jump into quickplay mode. The battle mode features attacks featuring song names like “Fade to Black”, or “Ride The Lightning”. After you complete certain songs, an exclamation mark appears and when you click on the song, you can choose to watch metallifacts appear, and learn facts about the song as the computer perfoms the song. The lyrics and information about the songs are also available if you want to read them. The backstage area of the game contains videos of Metallica in concert, a fan shrine, and footage of the band playing in motion capture suits so their looks can be transferred to the game.
If you are a die hard Metallica fan, and love Guitar Hero games, you will not get tired of this game for a long time. If you are just a fan of Guitar Hero, this game provides many challenging songs for you to master. The game is a lot of fun to play on your own or with a group of friends. Unless there is going to be a Led Zeppelin Guitar Hero, this could be the best Guitar Hero game for a long time to come.