Christian tunes his ax and whips out the beating stick

Today we get another song pack for Guitar Hero 2, the second one with fresh songs. I’m always up for some new challenges, but I also appreciate the chance this gives me to point out the faults (and successes) of others. You see, this song pack was announced for release a week ago and slated to be available last Thursday. Instead we get it today. The success here goes to scorehero, which did its best to explain the situation and keep everyone updated on the status of the songs. Apparently the tunes were supposed to be out this week rather than last, and someone in PR misinterpreted the announcement. I want to thank the folks at the site for keeping the community in the know.

I’ll chalk this up to an honest mistake by someone at Harmonix/Red Octane/Microsoft. The failure however still goes to the miserable game news blogs like Joystiq and Kotaku. As you can see, Kotaku reported on the song pack last week. Look around for an update or followup on the delay of its release, and you will find nothing at all.

It is bad enough that these two sites are essentially the same damn thing to the point where their headlines are always two plays on the same tired joke or pun. But events like this only help prove that these are horrible, leeches of websites run not by journalists but professional cut-‘n-pasters. It isn’t even like Scorehero is an obscure source – it is the premiere GH fansite, whose community members have gone on to meet up with Harmonix and Activision to try out their games. I guess it is too much for Kotaku to actually pay attention to the gaming community they “report” on.

But enough sour grapes, let’s look at how this pack fares. It is labeled as the “indie pack”, and while that is apt (the only band of the three that I knew was Atreyu), but don’t let that fool you into thinking this is soft or silly stuff. Detonation and Bury the Hatchet have some very sick riffs, and at times I was close to failure on expert. Its good hard rock that I can see myself playing a lot more of to get better. The Atreyu song is the easiest of them, though for my money it is the best sounding (and arguably most fun). This is certainly the best song pack the 360 has seen – the GH1 rereleases always seem to have two (or sometimes one) must-haves, and I don’t need to say anything about the My Chemical Romance pack. These tunes are original, rocking and challenging, a worthy combination for your setlist.

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