Zero Punctuation: Beatles Rock Band and Guitar Hero 5

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Oh God (I.E. Yahtzee)... This is by far my favorite one in months. It's certainly been a while since I laughed this much in one sitting.

Per your final comment about your depression with still buying guitar games, allow me to say "HA! Welcome to my world!" and the world of all the BEMANI fans out there who have suddenly realized they might just be getting sick of euro, trance, and J-pop after the eightieth installment of Dance Dance Revolution, or beatmania IIDX and pop'n music for the true snobs among us.

Of course, I had to commit myself to writing FAQs for all these games, which sadly didn't stretch my technical writing ability, and really amount to little more than an easy-to-hand reference guide for who's what in the songs and basically saying "look out for this", so my depression truly runs deep.

Decent review. I'm glad that someone has finally stopped bowing to the awe that is the Beatles and pointed out some of the major flaws that exist in the game (small setlist, whacky difficulty curve) and how its "innovations" of allowing up to 3 microphones and the dreamscapes do not compensate for this. Critics were throwing A/9.0+ ratings at this game like if they were entering a raffle contest. Beatles: RB is a solid 7 in my opinion. Not a bad game by any means, but let's not act like this was the greatest music game that has ever come out..

I have both games (as well as many others music games) and I have to agree that the genre in general has plateaued and until we can get some sort of major innovation, I don't see RB 3 or GH 6 moving a lot of units.

Yes this is exactly why I don't bother buying GH, or RB games anymore. Why the fuck can't they just release the new songs as DLC? While they're at it they could also release the older good tracks as DLC too.
See there Bobby, and whoever the hell runs EA; I've just found a way for you two bastards to suck more money away from us with little to no expenditure at your own self...

oh Rock Band, Guitar Hero, It appears your honeymoon is over with Yahtzee! Maybe the next version will be bundled with a drug kit, a roadie or two, and a cluster of young nubile fan girls.

Kind of good, i liked the part about how whe sucked.

I've never understood the whole appeal of Guitar Hero anyway. I could just get the same exact experience by getting wasted and dancing my ass off, pretending I was a major rock star. That way I get even more enjoyment and don't have to remember anything embarrassing that might've happened.

The charity bit made me laugh though : )

I wonder if Yahtzee will review DJ Hero next month.

Hehe I was excited when I saw that he was reviewing these two games. Sadly it wasn't really funny to me. While he did make a lot of good points as always (instead of releasing DLC they just keep making more games and stupid people still buy them) it wasn't classic or anything. Still enjoyed it though.

Heeeeeeeeeeeee. Girl!Yahtzee strangely reminds me of Modestly Hot Homsar.

I never liked the Beatles. They were highly overrated...as apparently was this game according to Yahtzee's review.

Wolfy4226:
I wonder if Yahtzee will review DJ Hero next month.

Hope not, that game pretty much speaks for itself. It'd be a waste of a Wednesday for me if he did that.

Not a particular fan of the Beatles, so this game isn't gonna make me run out and buy it. Loved the review though. DLC is and always will be a waste of money. Glad to see someone else feels that way.

Side Note: Has anyone played Guitar Hero: Aerosmith? They're one of my favorite bands, and I'm not particularly interested in seeing how Activision could screw it up. Just wanted to know if it was worth shelling out for.

Don't try and pretend you didn't say "Hence why" in there Mr.Croshaw

"The controller is smaller than a regular guitar anyway"
*compares controller to a bass guitar*

Oh dear.

I completely agreed when it came to the part where you don't listen to the music and faze out for a while. I do the exact same now. And since GH3, it's like I don't have to make much effort anymore anyway, 'cause it just seems... easier, and like they've given up on challenges nowadays.

As for Beatles Rockband... well, I hate the Beatles, so won't be buying it anyway. Shame, I prefer Rock Band's interface to Guitar Hero's.

why is only about 50% of the video working?

Skylarm:
Not a particular fan of the Beatles, so this game isn't gonna make me run out and buy it. Loved the review though. DLC is and always will be a waste of money. Glad to see someone else feels that way.

Side Note: Has anyone played Guitar Hero: Aerosmith? They're one of my favorite bands, and I'm not particularly interested in seeing how Activision could screw it up. Just wanted to know if it was worth shelling out for.

Maybe not when it first came out, but considering you can get it used (and in some places new) for less than $20 it's definitely worth it at that price.

I quite liked Beatles Rock Band but yeah, the setlist was too damn small and some songs I just never gave 2 shits about. No Penny Lane, no Strawberry Fields Forever and I never liked Good Morning from Sgt Peppers but hey look at that, it's there

And I never liked Guitar Hero games, seems like they love to make them, they just don't know how to make them properly

Yahtzee, nobody says "indiCtment"! The world is pronounced "inditement". I've often heard you pronouncing certain words very oddly, mythos was the most recent one, but there have been plenty others that I can't remember right now but remember being quite confused by. I guess you have picked some words up purely by reading them and have never actually heard them being spoken? In any case your pronunciation of many words is certainly novel and unusual...

I can't seem to get away from these games myself. I hated guitar hero 3, hated most of world tour, and yet still went out and bought guitar hero 5 (maybe it was the free copy of van halen that enticed me - because van HALEN not including HAGAR is like a fantasy for me).

Though I admit, playing these games by myself is getting rather stale, I still have a pretty good time with a group of friends, especially when there's alcohol involved (which coincidentally is the same way I feel about the wii). I suppose the novelty has worn off.

At least I saved myself $120 by hating Metallica and The Beatles.

Baba O'Riley is the answer to the end credits question!

Skylarm:
Not a particular fan of the Beatles, so this game isn't gonna make me run out and buy it. Loved the review though. DLC is and always will be a waste of money. Glad to see someone else feels that way.

Side Note: Has anyone played Guitar Hero: Aerosmith? They're one of my favorite bands, and I'm not particularly interested in seeing how Activision could screw it up. Just wanted to know if it was worth shelling out for.

I liked it, but then I'm a lifelong Aerosmith fan. I'm only really into these games for the music these days, so a game full of songs I like is always going to be a winner. If you're a top player looking for a massive challenge, you probably won't find it in the Aerosmith game. If you're just a fan looking for a new way to experience the songs, you could do a lot worse.

So, I love the Beatles Rock Band thing, in fact I'd actually go as far as to call it my game of the year so far (and, honestly, I can't see much topping it) just because it's the only plastic guitar game ever released where I love 100% of the songs. GH5 is fairly new to me, only got around to buying it two days ago, but I'm really enjoying it so far which is a nice thing to be able to say after the shitpile that was GHWT.

Incidentally... Stairway To Heaven - never going to happen, at least not unless Robert Plant has some kind of knock to the head and forgets that he thinks the whole thing is stupid.

gave up on guitar hero very shortly after gh 3 in which i realised that there was no real point. I have since lived a happy life of not having to buy an new fake instrument every year.

nice review yahtzee. being a beetles fan myself, i was mildly intrested in this game but couldnt be arsed to pay 150 for some new crap.

I love his riffs at the beginning. Speaking as a musician, I find the whole appeal of guitar hero to be pretty much non-existant, since I can just as easily play an actual instrument and not have to pay $60 to do it.

Hallow'sEve:
I've never understood the whole appeal of Guitar Hero anyway.

Have you played it? I ask because that's pretty much what I was saying for years, then I got coerced into trying it. Surprising thing was that it was a as much fun as a barrel full of monkeys. 'course, then the barrel ran dry and I couldn't rationalize paying for a whole new game that only had about 4 songs I actually wanted.

What they need to do is start putting all individual songs online for DLC and charge like a buck each. Then all they need to do is add new songs periodically and PRESTO! An Incredibly inexpensive way to make money that doesn't involved laboriously long development times and ridiculous production costs. I can't for the life of me figure out why Harmonics and Activision aren't doing this. A single programmer could probably get a new song ready in the span of about a day or two? So you spend about $100 total (with wages and resources used) to make one song, sell it online for a buck, 2,000 people download it (underestimate I think) and you make $1,900 in profit, that's a 1900% return on the investment. How is that a bad plan? Instead, they spend millions producing games that in the end probably return (if they're lucky) 50%-75% on the investment.

Oh, I'm still waiting for 'Chamber Music Hero', Harmonix. Might be the first 'Hero' game I actually enjoy!

Music games are a strange thing to me. On one hand when playing with a bunch or rowdy, in some cases even drunk friends it's fun but when I've tried by myself... at it's core its rather so so.

Given the constant wave of band themed releases for these games, makes you think what these games will be like in a few more years since that doesn't really convey any originality being put forward.

Krantos:

Hallow'sEve:
I've never understood the whole appeal of Guitar Hero anyway.

Have you played it? I ask because that's pretty much what I was saying for years, then I got coerced into trying it.

I have, but this:

only had about 4 songs I actually wanted.

Is why I never really liked it

Who the hell are the Beatles?

Ahem...
Back on Topic:
Guitar Hero died for me when they added a number 3 to it. Anyone see those commercials? Truly awful.

Krantos:
What they need to do is start putting all individual songs online for DLC and charge like a buck each. Then all they need to do is add new songs periodically and PRESTO! An Incredibly inexpensive way to make money that doesn't involved laboriously long development times and ridiculous production costs. I can't for the life of me figure out why Harmonics and Activision aren't doing this.

Are you serious?

Because Harmonix have been doing that ever since they released the first Rock Band.

In fact they've released over 600 songs in that fashion already, and are still going.

Krantos:

Hallow'sEve:
I've never understood the whole appeal of Guitar Hero anyway.

Have you played it? I ask because that's pretty much what I was saying for years, then I got coerced into trying it. Surprising thing was that it was a as much fun as a barrel full of monkeys. 'course, then the barrel ran dry and I couldn't rationalize paying for a whole new game that only had about 4 songs I actually wanted.

What they need to do is start putting all individual songs online for DLC and charge like a buck each. Then all they need to do is add new songs periodically and PRESTO! An Incredibly inexpensive way to make money that doesn't involved laboriously long development times and ridiculous production costs. I can't for the life of me figure out why Harmonics and Activision aren't doing this. A single programmer could probably get a new song ready in the span of about a day or two? So you spend about $100 total (with wages and resources used) to make one song, sell it online for a buck, 2,000 people download it (underestimate I think) and you make $1,900 in profit, that's a 1900% return on the investment. How is that a bad plan? Instead, they spend millions producing games that in the end probably return (if they're lucky) 50%-75% on the investment.

You're forgetting all the money that is lost from licensing the songs (Beatles Rock Band cost $40 million just to get the RIGHTS to the songs.)

joe_six:
Yahtzee, nobody says "indiCtment"

That really freaked me out for a second, I was like "damn have I really been saying it wrong all this time?"... phew.

Yay, i was hoping he would look into beatles rock band

swaki:

slipknot4:
I would like to see the new guitar hero games feature songs from the past year instead of giving us older Beatles and Metallica songs.

so true, i realize that the "good ol' days" of music have been glorified, and we all know them from when our parents played them on road trips, but there has been made some good music in the past 10 years!.

but i guess if you want new music dj hero is the one to get, they cant really avoid having new music, though techno and rap isn't my cup of tea.

That's because we're the "lost generation". We saw it coming for decades. Basically our parents (The Baby Boomers) benefitted from so much medical technology and the like that they were able to keep themselves active and healthy without slowing down for an unprecedented amount of time. This of course means that they aren't retiring, and still occupying the same jobs that they were supposed to start retiring from and grooming successors for. Generation X (ie us) wound up not amounting to much, leading to the perception of us as slackers (in a sociological sense rather than a personal one we never had a chance), and the fact that a lack of success has lead to disproportionate numbers of people living with their parents and such for pretty much their entire lives does not help.

The relevency that this has is simply that the Baby Boomers have all the money, so companies (irregardless of the economy) set out to appeal to the Baby Boomers rather than the young generation. All Generation X music is NOT crap, far from it, but it's not liked by the dominant generation who like to be reminded of their youth, and of course see that older music as still being "hip" and continually relevent on some level. In general a music game is likely to make MORE money by appealing to baby boomers who buy "good" music for their kids (or actually themselves to be honest, a lot of them do game), than focusing on new talent.

It's also noteworthy that back during the 1960s a lot of the artists either killed themselves with drugs, committed suicide, or wound up getting themselves into some truely messed up contracts where at one point they asked "where is the money we've been earning?" only to learn they were obligated to perform and pretty much would never see any proceeds from what they were doing. "Grand Funk Railroad" is pretty much the text book example of this.

The end result of course being that 1960s and 70s music tends to be a bit more accessible from a business standpoint, than the works of more savvy artists who have avoided those pitfalls.

On an unrelated note, the fact that a lot of artists have wised up is also part of why you see such a "flavor of the month" approach to bands rather than talents being supported. Old bands who were supported were pretty much slaves even if they din't realize it. There isn't quite the same level of profitability to promoting an artist who actually gets to keep a huge amount of what they make. In such cases it's better to only support them when on an "upswing" and abandon them on a "downswing" because the producers have less of a vested interest in their success.

I'd GUESS some of the music people want, like Stairway to Heaven, has the rights firmly in the hands of the band, and of course they want money. The fact that Jimmy Page is on record as hating the whole Guitar Hero concept also probably has a bit to do with it.

So basically I'd imagine newer music is more difficult to liscence in most cases, and less worthwhile becase it's the boomers who still control most of the money. You won't see a shift until they retire and Generation Y takes over, the music/culture of Generation X remaining kind of "lost" to history.

Of course then again we might not make it that far because right now the Baby Boomers are all still in power, but when they retire Generation X will be in no position to maintain the social security system until Generation Y fully entrenchs themselves. Social Security being a sort of multi-generational promise to support the previous generation with the system (or for the truely pessimistic: a goverment run Ponzi scheme). So really I half expect society to implode long before we ever see a change in the "dominant" musical culture.

Like it or not American entertainment is global entertainment, it's part of what makes our culture so strong. Other cultures have their bands and performers, but the American ones are the ones who are big, and people from around the world come HERE to perform in/with the American industry for a reason. Very similar things can be said about movies. America goes boom, so do a lot of things for a long time.

Being disabled on social security I'm likely to be shot dead trying to steal food as a resulrt of the collapse long before the entertainment industry rattles out it's last gasp though.

<end long ramble>

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