Guitar Hero: On Tour review
Guitar Hero's transition to the Nintendo DS was a success!


Guitar Hero: On Tour (Nintendo DS)

When Guitar Hero makes a transition to the DS, what comes into your head? Immediately I was skeptical. How could the famed console series work on a handheld?

When I returned from the store with my Guitar Hero: On Tour package, there were multiple items inside. There was the Guitar Grip with a pick stylus inside, which I will explain soon. Two small sticker sheets, an adapter that makes the Guitar Grip compatible on the original Nintendo DS, the game manual, and the instructions booklet are all included in the package. I'm not sure if you will receive this upon purchase, but I received an extra blue pick stylus.

Now, you may be wondering, what is a Guitar Grip? The Guitar Grip is what makes this game possible. It slides into the GBA Port at the bottom of your NDS. There is a strap on the underside, where your hand can rest. Your first four fingers rest on the four fret buttons. Yes, I said four. This time around, Neversoft removed the orange fret, leaving us with green, red, yellow, and blue. There is a slot inside the Guitar Grip, where your pick rests. The Guitar Grip and the pick solve the mystery of how this game will work. You press the frets down, and too strum; you slide your pick stylus across the touch screen when the notes pass bye. That registers the strumming, and there you go.

You may be wondering, 'œCould this game even be fun?' The answer is, yes. The Guitar Grip and pick stylus method of play may take some time to get used to, but it is all good fun in the end. If you do buy the game, don't get discouraged at first. Just play for a few days and you will have it all down.

Now, onto the actual game. At the menu screen, there are four options. Single Player, Multiplayer, Options, and Credits. The credits are pretty self-explanatory. In the options window, you can delete all of the data, mess around with the audio, change your mic sensitivity, and turn on lefty flip.

In Single Player, you can start a career, play in some Guitar Duels, play some Quickplay, Practice, and go through the tutorials. If you have ever played Guitar Hero before, there is nothing new about Career Mode. You select a character, a guitar, and you move through five sets of locations completing five songs at each. That gives you twenty five songs to complete. You earn money based on how well you play the song. Obviously, if you play badly, you don't get a whole lot of money, but if you play a great show, you get a lot of money. The money you receive you get to buy Guitars and Characters from the store.

If you have played Guitar Hero III, you will remember the Guitar Battles. Instead of getting star power, you receive Battle Power. You activate it, and it throws your opponent off track. The Guitar Battles were brought over to On Tour, but this time around they are called Guitar Duels. The Guitar Duels are like an alternative career mode. You battle through every single song that you completed in career mode. That is something new, so it is cool.

Practice Mode is a relief to have in this game. You can learn all of your solo's and such before you take them on in a real song. There is a change from the other Guitar Hero's practices in this game. You can no longer change your game speed, which is a large disappointment in my eyes.

The song list in this game is decent to say the least. Quite a few songs from Guitar Hero III are in this game, which is a disappointment. You may remember Helicopter, Hit Me With Your Best Shot, La Grange, and Rock And Roll All Nite. Other than that, there are a lot of new songs to the entire series, which is a good thing. Quite a few of them are covers, but no big deal. They still sound pretty good.

When you are playing a song, the note highway looks impressively polished, and there is a clear scene of your band playing in the background. Star Power is easy enough to activate. There are many ways to do it. You can yell, or blow into your mic, press the X, Y, B, or A buttons, or tap the star power meter on the touch screen. Any of those options will activate star power. It does not get much easier than that.

Overall, I was definitely impressed with Guitar Hero: On Tour. There may not be a lot of songs, but the difficulty, and the Guitar Duels make up for that. There is a lot of replay value, and the graphics are great. This is a great game. Guitar Hero's transition over to the NDS was a success!

Guitar Hero: On Tour receives an 8.7 out of 10.

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