I don’t like the Guitar Hero/Rock Band genre of games. Don’t consider this an insult if you do. Different people like different types of games. To me, all these rock games look and play like Milton Bradley’s Simon.
Pushing colored buttons in an ever increasingly complex pattern just doesn’t appeal to me – gameplay wise. I hated the dancing mission in GTA: San Andreas for the same reason. I got through it, but it was a hassle. Not fun.
But every so often a game comes out that does something different with the same gameplay elements, improving the gaming experience. Brutal Legend, for instance, used short guitar riffs as magic spells. Repeat the pattern and Drop a Deuce.
Rapala Pro Bass Fishing 2010 plays a different tune for each lure reeling style – like Fast Cranking or Slide and Glide. Keep the rod moving smooth and steady and the music continues – letting you know that the lure action is attracting the fish. Make a mistake and the music stops.
Both of those games added a little bit of Guitar Hero into a different genre and both succeeded in transforming the Simon-esque gameplay into something I found enjoyable.
So – today, I got the GameStop weekly ad email and they’re advertising a game called Rock of the Dead. I watched the video (below) and am tempted to buy it. Conspiracy games has mashed up a shooting gallery game with Guitar Hero gameplay. The way it works is: you play a guitar riff and zombies explode from the sheer Awesomeness of your Metal! Each individual enemy gets its own riff bar and explodes separately. It’s backed up with a Rob Zombie heavy soundtrack and dialogue by Neil “Doogie” Patrick Harris.
I think it’s an innovation in the right direction, but ultimately it’ll still feel like Simon. So- even at the sale price of 30 bucks, I don’t think Rock of the Dead would be a wise purchase for me. (Maybe I’ll pick it up once it hits the bargain bin.) But if you already like Guitar Hero or Rock Band, it might be worth it to you. Take a look at this gameplay video to see what you think: