DJ Hero has its moments but I didn't feel that immediate sense of magic that I did the first time I strapped on a replica guitar
- The music is good enough that I'd boot up the game just hear it, some tracks let you play along with a guitar
- The controller and note charts need polish, the price tag might turn off some would-be DJs
It was inevitable that Activision would look to expand its rhythm genre empire and DJ Hero is a noteworthy addition to its arsenal. However, it isn't nearly as accessible nor as polished as its current bread and butter franchise, Guitar Hero. Still, it has potential and the music is good enough that it should convince enough gamers to step up to the ones and twos; we're also certain it will warrant a sequel, which we hope will fix some of the issues that bog down an otherwise noteworthy debut.
Price$ 179.00 (AUD)
Guitar Hero isn't just a successful game franchise: it's a bona fide phenomenon. But as the old saying goes, all good things must come to an end and it's obvious that we've reached a saturation point for rhythm games. Sequels are becoming nothing more than glorified track packs and while sales are still strong, gamers are like cats in that they become easily distracted, so publishers have to find new ways to keep them interested. In that respect, you can either specialise, the way Rock Band did with The Beatles, or you can produce an offshoot, which is the route Activision took with DJ Hero.
It's a title that benefits greatly from the familiarity that we have with its siblings: Guitar Hero did such a great job of indoctrinating us to the joys of pushing buttons to a beat that half the battle's already been won. But I don't think DJ Hero will reach the same level of success that the Guitar Hero franchise did for a couple of reasons. The first is the price tag: at $179, it's a rather large investment for yet another specialised piece of plastic. Experiencing it first-hand will make believers out of some but it probably won't turn an entire generation of gamers into converts the way Guitar Hero did, especially because the experience isn't as inherently satisfying; after all, everyone wants to secretly be in a band but far fewer of us long to be a professional DJ.
Secondly, the hardware isn't nearly as accessible or as polished as the now classic five-buttoned guitar. The turntable peripheral is solidly built but it's one or two revisions away from being perfect. The cross-fader switch is way too fickle for its own good; sometimes being even a little out of position will result in a miss, which wrecks havoc on your combos. The turntable itself works fine but having to press a button while also making a scratching motion is more work than it should be; the blue button, which sits closest to the "record's" centre, is especially difficult because you can't get as much leverage with just your ring finger. The actual note charts could also use a bit of polishing as well; it can get a bit too "busy" for its own good, especially on the harder difficulties.
You'll mess up a lot if you play on Hard or Extreme and that's a shame because missing a note cuts the music off and that's the one thing they absolutely nailed. The 93 included songs are so good that I'd sometimes stay on the menu screen and just nod along to the beat. The audio team really put a lot of thought into the mixes and the pairings not only make sense but they're often clever as well. Eminem's "My Name Is" perfectly balances with Beck's "Loser" to form a track that not only playfully thumbs its nose at the artists involved but also gives them a pat on the back. And the fact that they took two songs that have become pop-culture punchlines -- Vanilla Ice's "Ice, Ice Baby" and MC Hammer's "Can't Touch This" -- and mashed them together into something worthwhile is downright inspiring.
The music really does most of the heavy lifting here and I'd gladly purchase the soundtrack if one was made available but the game's lack of polish left me a little flat. DJ Hero has its moments but I didn't feel that immediate sense of magic that I did the first time I strapped on a replica guitar. I do think DJ Hero will carve out its own niche but for the reasons listed above its fanbase probably won't be as sizable or as rabid as its rock & roll cousins. There is hope, however, that the inevitable sequel will solve the issues with the hardware and note charts, the way GH2 finished what GH1 started, and that version might be the one to wait for but at the least, gamers who invest in DJ Hero can soothe any angst they feel over its faults by listening to the incredible setlist.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Acer Swift 7
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Google Daydream VR headset
Lexar® Portable SSD
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Huawei Mate 9
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Surface Pro 4
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 2 Kogan curved 4K UHD 55-inch LED LCD TV review
- 3 Panasonic Blu-ray recorder PVR set-top box review
- 4 Garmin Fenix Chronos fitness tracker smartwatch review
- 5 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
Latest News Articles
- Star Citizen dumps DirectX 12 plans to focus on Vulkan-powered graphics
- Dungeons and Dragons ditches pen and paper with D&D Beyond
- Exclusive no more: PlayStation 4 games are coming to the PC via PlayStation Now
- Adding video apps like Netflix to the Nintendo Switch is a waste of Nintendo's energy
- You can download Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes for iOS and Android today
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Behind the scenes with Team Walkinshaw at V8 Supercars Melbourne 2017
- And the 2017 winner of the Formula 1 Best Pit Lane Boom Gantry is...
- First look at the Formula 1 2017 pit lane in Melbourne, Australia
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- CCInside Sales ConsultantNSW
- FTICT Security AnalystQLD
- FTSenior Front End Developer x 2NSW
- FTFinancial ERP Customer - Solution Consultant / System AccountantNSW
- FTSenior Network Specialist - Internet Edge DatacentreVIC
- TPSQL Server Developer | 3 month contract |NSW
- FTService Desk CoordinatorVIC
- TPProgram ArchitectQLD
- FTSenior Android DeveloperNSW
- TPIT Project ManagerNSW
- FTHead of ArchitectureNSW
- FT.Net DeveloperNSW
- FTMS Dynamics DevelopersNSW
- FTArcFM/Gis Lead DeveloperNSW
- FTField Deployment EngineerNSW
- CCExecutive SupportWA
- FTSenior IOS DeveloperNSW
- CCUser Researcher/Business AnalysisACT
- FTImplementation LeadVIC
- FTSAS DeveloperNSW
- FTPower BI Reporting DevelopersSA
- FTDatabase Modelling SpecialistNSW
- FTIncident and Problem ManagerVIC
- CCOrganisational Change Analyst - Banking/Financial ServicesNSW