Let me start this review off by stating that I am not the biggest Metallica fan. I enjoy some of their songs but a lot of them start to get on my nerves and seem to go on forever. I know that the diehard Metallica fans will think I am crazy for not liking every one of their songs, but I just can’t. This being said, Guitar Hero Metallica is not for everyone and if you don’t like Metallica then I would not even bother considering buying the game. More than half of the songs in Guitar Hero Metallica are by Metallica and the other songs that fill in the roster are by bands that Metallica likes.
Some of the Metallica songs you will be playing are as follows: Fuel, One, The Unforgiven, King Nothing, Orion, Enter Sandman, Battery, and over twenty more songs. Some of the other artist in the game include Foo Fighters, Alice in Chains, Motorhead, Slayer, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Judas Priest, Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band, Queen, and dozen more. I enjoyed the Metallica songs I like and a few of the other songs from the other bands, but most of the music in Guitar Hero Metallica was not that appealing to me. You can view the full song list from the game on the Guitar Hero Metallica website and I recommend checking it out before purchasing this game.
Guitar Hero Metallica is built on the Guitar Hero World Tour (GHWT) engine and includes the same features it has to offer. You can go into the studio and create your own songs and share them online. There are single player and full band modes and you can play on and offline. Everything that I mentioned in my Guitar Hero World Tour Review also relates to this game and I suggest you check it out. You would probably be better served buying Guitar Hero World Tour instead of Guitar Hero Metallica if you don’t own GHWT yet and are not a huge Metallica fan, since GHWT offers a lot more variety.
The music and sound effects in Guitar Hero Metallica are as expected and the music sounds great in Dolby Digital as long as you hit all the notes. Missing notes causes the expected bad off key sound to be heard. All of the music is sung by the real artists and makes the experience a lot better than the earlier Guitar Hero games. It is hard to say much more about the music and sound effects, since most of the game is either the music playing or crowd cheering and they all sound good.
Speaking of the crowd, Neversoft still needs to add more variety to the people in the crowd in Guitar Hero Metallica. You will see the same people over and over again when they show a view of the crowd in one of the eight venues. The concert venues are well designed and look like some of the best I have seen in a Guitar Hero game. The Metallica band members were all motion captured for the game and their animated versions look really good. They perform and move around the stage just like they would if you were seeing them live in concert. You can even watch some behind the scene videos included with the game of them being motion captured for Guitar Hero Metallica.
Just like other recent Guitar Hero games you can link Guitar Hero Metallica to your online profile on their website to compare stats and other things with friends. You can also play the game online with other friends if you don’t have enough people at your house to make a full band. There is even a eight-player online band versus band mode available.
All of the rock band action is controlled using the standard Guitar Hero World Tour guitars, drums, and microphone. I also tried the game with the Rock Band drum set and it worked well and just removed the orange set of notes, since the Rock Band drums don’t have five drums like the GHWT drum set includes.
I guess I should mentioned briefly how to play Guitar Hero Metallica if you haven’t played a Guitar Hero or Rock Band game before. The basic concept of the game has you watching dots (notes) scroll down the screen and you have to perform the correct action when the note gets to the bottom cross bar. The action depends on which instrument you are using. If you are playing the guitar then you will need to hold one of the colored buttons down on the neck of the guitar and then strum the strum bar when the dot gets to the bottom bar. If you are playing the drums then you have to hit the correct colored drum pad that matches the note. If you are singing then you have to match the pitch of the singer and basically perform like you would on karaoke night at your local club.
Guitar Hero Metallica builds on what Guitar Hero World Tour has to offer and is a “must by” for all Metallica fans. You can even buy an extra foot pedal for your GHWT drum set if you want the true Lars Ulrich experience. If you are a Metallica fan then I would say you can add an additional 1 or 1.5 points to the score below. If you are not a Metallica fan, then I would avoid this game and buy either Guitar Hero World Tour or Guitar Hero Smash Hits if you don’t have them already. The game is fun and uses the same formula as the other Guitar Hero games, but if you don’t like Metallica music you won’t enjoy this game.
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