Review Quickies, Vol. 10

Guitar Hero Encore: Rocks the 80s
(PS2, 2007)

+ pretty good selection of 1980s music
– content cut that was in Guitar Hero II
– small set list of tracks
– extremely short

As the name suggests this Guitar Hero game is simply an expansion of Guitar Hero II with 1980s music. Unfortunately it is also an extremely stripped down expansion with only 30 songs and no bonus tracks either. A stage was cut from GHII and all of the existing ones are just from GHII, but with a slight 80s neon tint to them. This is a serviceable Guitar Hero provided you only care about playing the only new thing about this release: the 1980s songs.

RATING: 4 out of 6 / 7.0 out of 10

Guitar Hero: Aerosmith
(PS2, 2008)

+ good selection of Aerosmith tracks from throughout their career
– the note highway background is a bit too busily designed when playing Aerosmith tracks
– far fewer tracks in total than Guitar Hero III

While I wouldn’t call myself an Aerosmith fan, I still picked this up for super cheap anyway. Guitar Hero: Aerosmith is at least a big step up for an expansion than Rocks the 80s was. Outside of having a smaller Aerosmith centric track list, GH:A doesn’t skimp on the content and the bigger fan of the band that you are, the more you’ll likely enjoy this game.

RATING: 4 out of 6 / 7.0 out of 10

Street Fighter x Tekken
(PS3, 2012)

+ a great roster full of interesting fighters
+ Tekken characters were transitioned to a 2D fighter surprisingly well
– too much of the presentation and gameplay feels a lot like Street Fighter IV
– too many different system mechanics
– gems are largely pointless

I was really looking forward to Street Fighter x Tekken, so much so that I ordered the Japanese special edition. I really feel like a sucker now! This game looked like it would be a ton of fun, but it turns out to be mostly a bore. I expected the gems to mean very little to the outcome of matches since they could only be as they are or way too good. Seems like they’re clearly there more as a way to get suckers to buy more of ’em via DLC. They also have two disparate combo systems going on at the same time, links (like in SFIV) and chains (Darkstalkers, BlazBlue), and they don’t work well together at all. This game’s existence makes me wish that much more for a Capcom vs. SNK 3, you know, a good crossover!

RATING: 4 out of 6 / 7.0 out of 10

Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock
(PS2, 2007)

+ excellent track list of 70+ songs
+ slightly more lenient for allowing the notes to be successfully hit than any previous GH
– difficulty is noticeably higher than other GH games
– boss battles are pretty dumb

RATING: 5 out of 6 / 7.5 out of 10

Street Fighter EX2 Plus
(PS, 1999)

+ a number of new characters
+ new custom combos added called “Excel”
– modes such as Time Attack and Survival were omitted
– Blair and Allen were omitted

This was a good follow-up to Street Fighter EX plus Alpha. Cool new characters like V. Rosso and Shadow Geist were added and a few returning ones had meaningful changes like Darun and Kairi (the latter no longer just an Akuma clone). On the bad side of things, Time Attack and Survival were left out this time in favor of stupid additions of bonus stages and a Director mode.

RATING: 5 out of 6 / 8.0 out of 10

Guitar Hero: World Tour
(PS2, 2008)

+ fantastic 80+ song track list
+ extensive character creator
+ difficulty toned down quite a bit
+ boss battles are now just simple tug-of-wars
– music creator is overly complicated
– created songs sound like crap even the Neversoft ones

This is probably my favorite of these type of music/rhythm games so far, largely thanks to the rebalanced difficulty which means I can usually play on Hard with the fifth fret button and not feel that I have to be super skilled to do it.

RATING: 5 out of 6 / 8.0 out of 10