Guitar Hero: On Tour Decades

If there’s anything more annoying than sitting next to someone on a train who’s bobbing and tapping out the beat to music that you can’t quite hear, it’s sitting next to someone on a train who’s twitching, flicking, blowing and clicking away at some music you can’t quite hear… dearest Ready-Uppers, that nightmarish person is me!
I loved Guitar Hero: On Tour. It filled out the boring parts of a very tedious journey and I’m supremely grateful even though I suffered from ‘the claw’ as a result. Imagine my joy then, dear reader, when Guitar Hero: On Tour Decades found it’s way into my hands! Not only new tunes but also fun times with friends too!
The game itself follows the same basic mechanic as the original Guitar Hero: On Tour. You play an aspiring Rock Star working your way through various set lists at a variety of venues. In this new release though, the venues represent the Decades of the title and the set lists are some of the iconic hits from those years, same but different; I hope you’re with me so far. Now though you have a choice, you can play lead guitar as in the original game, OR you can play Bass/Rhythm OR you can take part in the new guitar duel feature.
I’d like to dwell on the Duel mode for a little while now, this is a truly inspired piece of gaming design. You and your chosen axe take on one of the other characters in a head to head battle, taking turns through the songs and racking up as many point as possible through the usual multipliers, star power etc etc. But then out of nowhere a skateboard hurtles across the screen and a Californian youth (I’m making an assumption here) shouts “Sign my ‘board!” this you must do, scribbling away like a loon in order to get back to the tunes. Then you find that a guitar string has snapped and you need to re-string it, or the screens swap over and you’re strumming the scroller, or your guitar catches fire and you have to blow on your DS to put it out, or there are bombs in the scroller which make you unable to score, or…

Excuse me, I seem to be getting a little carried away. I think it’s safe to say that I REALLY like the duel mode, I especially like it that the events listed above can be user initiated! Yes my friends you can send these horrors upon your opponent by tapping on the associated icons that appear on your screen. Genius! I so much wanted to have the complete experience for this review that I went out and bought another DS so I could enjoy inflicting these things upon an unsuspecting friend in true multi-player style and my advice is, try it, you’ll love it. The Multi-player link up works with the original game too so there are very few limitations to getting hooked up.
In the box you get a Guitar Hero: On Tour controller grip, same as the original but you also get a new skin for it which just slips inside under the clear cover. There is also a new set of Decades stickers to, well stick on things. I know that some DS’ers like to personalise their kit and there’s more than enough here to do that job.
In single player I ran through the career pretty quickly on Easy level, choosing the Bass/Rhythm option. I enjoyed it too, it give a new dimension to rhythm gaming when you aren’t listening for the screaming Lead guitar all of the time. I also found that this only unlocks those track for the Bass/Rhythm guitar, I have to replay the track with Lead and again in Duel mode to complete things totally. There are some people who would say this is a cop out, I say it’s three times the original game AND it’s three times the fun!
If I have one gripe, and I usually do, it’s that the controller STILL refuses to stay in place. With my trusty sticky-backed Velcro I can now rock as hard as I like, but without it I do need to rachet back the action a little.

Guitar hero: On Tour Decades is as much fun as you can have getting cramp in your wrists! On your own or with a friend strum, twitch and blow until ‘You Rock!’. Just be careful with your elbows, especially if the guy next to you on the train looks like Vinnie Jones!







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