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Review: Guitar Hero II – PS2

by Nick Haywood on 29 November 2006, 09:56

Tags: Guitar Hero II, RedOctane, Xbox 360, PS2, Simulation

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New tracks and a new gameplay mode

So what’s new with Guitar Hero II? Well first off, as you’d expect from a sequel, we’ve got a whole load of news tracks. For the rock aficionados we’ve got the likes of the Foo Fighters with ‘Monkey Wrench’, Van Halen’s version of ‘You Really Got Me’, Aerosmith’s ‘Last Child’ and ‘Madhouse’ from Anthrax, as well as a whole load more, which you can see on the last page of this review. On top of this there’s a load of unlockable tracks for you to buy as you earn cash in the game, which was a great feature of the original and gave loads of decent acts an airing they would have likely never had.

But aside from the new tunes, what else is new? In the manner of proper sequels, take note George Lucas, RedOctane have opted to change as little as possible and add new features instead. So the game still plays exactly as the original did. Notes scroll down the track and you strum when they reach the bottom, holding down the correct coloured fret button, just as before.

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But the real fun with Guitar Hero was when you plugged in two guitars and had a face off against another player. Blasting your way through the ‘Ace of Spades’ with a mate was just too much fun… but RedOctane have added a new twist which rockets Guitar Hero II right up the charts to knock bloody Bryan Adams and that damn Robin Hood song into the gutter…

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The multiplayer now gives you the ability to not just face off against each other, but to also play co-operatively, with one of you on lead, the other on bass and believe me, this is absolutely awesome. When you were nailing the notes in Guitar Hero, it almost felt like you were really playing. With the Guitar Hero II co-op mode, it not only feels like you’re playing the tune, it now feels like you’re playing in a band too. When it all comes together, when you’re nailing that screaming solo and your mate is riffing through the bass, it’s probably the most fun two grown men can have in a room together that doesn’t involve lubrication... and there’s even two versions of the game, with or without a Cherry Gibson SG. So if you’ve got the original, no need to fork out for another guitar. Unless you’re a collector and fancy a Cherry coloured SG. Of course, I have one already, from the original manufacture, so I’m having my Spinal Tap moment and not allowing anyone to touch it…