Band Hero for the DS comes with two peripherals.
- Solid (albeit short) set list and snazzy looking peripherals...
- ...that don't work too well, no Career mode, Lacks the "band" feeling
With three portable iterations of Guitar Hero currently on store shelves, it was inevitable that Activision would introduce the full-on band experience onto Nintendo's popular handheld -- but how well does it work? The lack of a Career mode and On Tour's infamous hand-cramping peripheral really hurts the overall experience.
With Rock Band's release in 2007, a plastic guitar and a set of noiseless drums were all it took to make any group of friends feel like the next Led Zeppelin. Now, after two years of rhythmless drum solos, broken pedals and a new taste for 70s music, Activision has decided to snatch a slice of the pie, transforming Guitar Hero into the all-new four-way band. But where Harmonix stopped at life-size peripherals, Band Hero went one step further: the handheld.
Band Hero for the DS comes with two peripherals. The "Guitar Grip," as seen in Guitar Hero: On Tour, allows the player to hold down the fret buttons with one hand and strum the touch screen with the other in order to play either the guitar or bass. I, myself, managed to play one song before my wrist started cramping. Three, and my wrist lost all feeling. Fortunately, the price your wrist pays is at least rewarded by a touch screen that seems to respond to strumming far better than its predecessor.
The drums, however, are far more lenient on the bones. A skin with four drum pads, mapped to the Up, Down, A and B buttons, fits snuggly around the DS, requiring only the use of your thumbs. While I eventually ditched the sleeve for the sake of accuracy, the drums themselves provide a fun, rhythmic frenzy. Imagine Dance Dance Revolution with only two digits at your disposal. Most likely, you'll forget the guitar is even an option.
The mic may actually be the least accurate instrument of the bunch. I had to hold the DS an inch from my nose to get it to acknowledge my voice, and even then, the pick-up is a little shotty. Thankfully, you can pull off a mid-song stunt, a mini-game that lends you a boost of Star Power. As obnoxious as these diversions can be, they're the best way to dodge failure.
As for the game itself, I like to call it "Band Hero: Abridged." The set list is varied, fun and up to date, with tunes from Avril Lavigne to The Rolling Stones. However, without a career mode, you have access to all 30 songs from the start. Awards and unlocks granted after good deeds -- earning 5 Stars on a song, playing a set with Judy Nails - keeps the feeling of progression relatively intact, but the inability to go from rags to stardom takes becoming a "Hero" out of the title.
With a palm-sized guitar, thumb-driven drums and mic planted directly over the face, I move to slash the "Band" part from the title as well. As fun as it may be to switch between Thumb Dance Revolution and frantically strumming the touch screen with the stylus, the entire appeal to the "Band" franchise is the feeling that you and all of your friends, without one smidge of skill between the lot of you, can feel like rockstars. Even if the peripherals kicked serious butt -- and they don't -- you just can't hold a jam session with the DS. Add the fact that there's no journey to the Hall of Fame, and all you've got is a sad tale of the one-man band that went nowhere and a terribly cramped wrist.
Follow GamePro Australia on Twitter: @GameProAu
Join the newsletter!
Now that the home entertainment market has moved towards streaming video services and Blu-ray content, there has never been a better time to convert DVD collections to digital.
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Nova 3e: P20 in a pinch
- 2 Oppo R15 Pro review: A compelling mid-tier option with lots of value and few compromises
- 3 LG E8 OLED TV (2018) and SK10Y soundbar review: If you've been on the fence about OLED, now might be the time to jump it
- 4 Nokia 6 (2018) review: Simple. Solid. Supreme.
- 5 Samsung Q9F Series QLED: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Magic: The Gathering Arena enters open beta on September 28
- The Assassin’s Creed Challenge comes to Sydney
- Playstation embraces the past with Playstation Classic
- ASUS Republic of Gamers announces PC Partnership with Activision for Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
- HP launches Omen by HP Challenger Series Tournament
PCW Evaluation Team
I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.
Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
- Samsung Galaxy Note 9: Full, in-depth, Australian review
- Panasonic FZ1000U OLED TV: Full, in-depth, review
- Oppo Find X: Full, in-depth review
- 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