Reviewed: 12/17/10

A valiant attempt at moving forward...that fails in every way.

What follows is NOT a full review. It is my experience with the game and my thoughts.

I had recently got my hands on Rock Band 3 as a birthday present, and had noticed its guitar pro mode. (Summed up: you play REAL guitar in guitar pro) I was disappointed that I couldn't use my own guitar, so I set out to grab a pro guitar controller. I found this game package. I had decided to see if the guitar contained in here would work. Sadly, it did not work with guitar pro. I had already opened the package, so I decided to pop in the included game.

In a nutshell, Power Gig is a band-style guitar hero rip-off. However, it fails in absolutely every way possible. Where to start? I'll start with the six string guitar included in the package.

As advertised on the package, the guitar included is (sort of) a REAL guitar. If you have a guitar cord and an amp handy, supposedly, you can plug in and play. I didn't have any success with this, although that may be because my guitar cord is a bit screwy in the first place. That said, the guitar is SMALL. VERY small. As an actual guitar, it's not going to get you any respect on stage, because it is just so tiny.

The guitar does an even WORSE job performing in game. You're given a vertical, 2D stream of colored notes in the classic green, red, yellow, blue, orange pattern. These colors correspond to the 2nd through 6th frets on the guitar. Your job is to play guitar hero using the strings instead of classic buttons.

I can't even begin to describe how wrong the above paragraph sounds. You have a REAL FREAKING GUITAR. Why aren't you PLAYING it like one!? Why are you playing it in a non-realistic guitar hero style when you could do the same thing with a not-nearly-as-painful button guitar!?

The developers did realize that this wouldn't sell, so they had to utilize the strings. The way they did so is a joke. Playing normal notes, you need only use one string. Then there's power chords. They're simple enough on a real guitar: Pick any fret on the guitar on any string except the top (skinniest) string. Hold that fret with your index finger. Then, using your ring finger, hold the fret on the next string up and two frets up. This is a power chord.

Power chords are the only instance in the game where you have to use more than one string. And they are near-impossible to read on the note chart. You're given a number inside the colored note: the color is the fret the root note is on, the number is the string it's on. It's then your job to place your ring finger on the other correct fret, then strum it. I can't even begin to describe how difficult this is.

Did I mention that pressing the strings to the frets so that it registers takes INSANE amounts of pressure? Well, it does. Needless to say, that doesn't help.

After about one hour of suffering through this, I decided that it's not worth it any more. I packed everything in the box, and I'm going to return it to the store and tell them its defective.

The first reason this game gets a 2 and not a 1 is because they get cookie points for trying. Playing REAL guitar in a video game is an interesting direction to move. They failed, however, because Harmonix managed not only to beat them to the punch, but actually do it right. While I still have not tried Guitar Pro mode in RB3, I DO know that it does use an entire 6 by 17 fretboard in a real-guitar-like style, unlike the hybrid 5-button/power chord mish-mosh that Power Gig throws at you.

The other reason they earn a 2 is because you can turn power chord mode off and use a standard guitar hero controller. At that point, you have another collection of guitar hero songs that utilize a subpar interface. Oh yeah, you can also drum and sing, but it's not like that hasn't already been covered by more settled-in companies.

Guitar is crap.
Interface is crap.
Borderline false advertising: implies that you're playing real guitar, but is really just a far-overcomplicated 5-button GH style game.
Guitar is more or less real, but is terrible at being a real guitar

Don't bother. _Maybe_ rent it if you like the setlist of included songs, but good luck trying to play.

Rating:   1.0 - Terrible

Product Release: Power Gig: Rise of the SixString (Guitar Kit) (US, 10/19/10)

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