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DJ vs. Guitar Hero: there can be only one. December 25, 2009

Posted by Santiago Azpurua-Borras in Copy+Paste Original, Editorial.
Tags: ,

When Guitar Hero first hit the gaming scene, it found its niche market on the PS2 and was praised as one of the most fun and innovative games of the last generation.

The franchise didn’t really take off until Guitar Hero 2, which extended its reach to the newest generation of consoles.

Now, the franchise, alongside Rock Band, has not only become a staple of gaming, but a staple of American pop culture in general. Whether or not this is good or bad for the gaming industry is still a debate to be had.

But recently, Activision decided to take the “Hero” label and slap it onto some fake turntables. I’ve been addicted to it for the last two weeks or so, and can safely say that this is the better of the two heroes.

Hit the jump to find out why.

1. The controller

While the guitar controller does in fact, look like a guitar, it hardly simulates what it feels like to play an actual guitar. The turntable controller looks and also feels like an actual turntable. Now, obviously there aren’t buttons on the discs that are used for actual turntables, but the experience is more real than that of the guitar controller. And that just creates an overall better gaming experience.

2. The characters

Sure, Guitar Hero has Spinal Tap rejects like Judy Nails, Johnny Knox and that foreign Kiss reject. And it took about four or five games to get actual guitarists and singers: Taylor Swift, Metallica, and others. DJ Hero has Grandmaster Flash, Dj Jazzy Jeff, and Daft Punk. DJ Hero wins.

3. The Soundtrack

One positive thing I could say about both games is that they are always aware of their fan-base’s various tastes. Guitar Hero offered many types of rock such as alternative rock, metal, heavy rock and Foo Fighters! However, DJ Hero offers something for absolutely everyone. Techno, rock, alternative, hip-hop, rap, covers and a slew of top-40 tracks litter the musical palette of DJ Hero. Reluctantly, DJ Hero also has Foo Fighters. Not to mention the often amazing mash-ups that have you bopping your head or something similarly silly as you play the game.

4. The Gameplay

Guitar Hero offered some pretty involving gameplay. You see the notes, press the corresponding neck buttons, and strum. Flip the guitar up to activate starpower and try to score the highest score possible. In DJ Hero, you press the corresponding notes, use the crossfader to switch between the two tracks, scratch the disc when prompted and turn the effects knob to change the sound of the song. Euphoria (The DJ Hero equivalent to starpower) is activated by pressing a large flashing button which crossfades automatically and doubles your score multiplier. It doesn’t sound great on paper, but once you masters the basics DJ Hero becomes one of the most fun music-based experiences you’ll have. The reason why I feel DJ Hero is a much more enjoyable experience is because, with Guitar Hero, it only feels like you’re playing the song you chose. In DJ Hero, you feel like you are actually creating the mash-up of the two different tracks. And that’s where the real difference lies: creating versus replicating.

DJ Hero is a franchise I hope takes off just as well as Guitar Hero has. There is literally an endless possibility of music choices, and this game is screaming for some downloable content. So until then, scratch on my brothers and sisters, scratch on.



1. bryan m - December 25, 2009

i would agree in some respects, but the main thing about dj hero that pisses me off is that, the setlist is sweet as hell… but you can’t buy, download, or pirate any of the songs, you can practically only listen to them on youtube or ingame. I’m almost to the point where i just use a youtube mp3 converter

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