there’s a new video game in town. it seems like everyone i know has gotten guitar hero III – my neighbors, coworkers, colleagues. everyone is talking about it and the competitiveness is getting bad – and i’m not talking about the kids. the other day a conversation i was having about it with a friend quickly deteriorated into this:
me: oh, i love GH III. i got it for the kids but i’ve been playing it too.
b: me too.
me: level one is WAY too easy. i skipped to level two and i’ve already beat it!
b: oh yeah, well, i skipped level two and i’m on level THREE cos i didn’t want my orange button to feel neglected!
me: no way!
seriously, the popularity of this game has gone beyond the usual target audience for video games and even adults are playing it. and i think the explanation is simple. who didn’t want to be in a band when they were younger? even during my dorky marching band days, i would dream of being joan jett or lita ford, rocking on stage, which was a lot sexier than honking on a clarinet.
so, i picked up an old guitar and learned how to play a few chords but never got much further than “cum bah ya” on the six string. but now, with GH, i have the ability to make with the rock on the guitar-shaped controller. every time the kids turn the game on they exclaim, “mommy! you got us some new songs!”
this game is awesome. there’s no PROFANITY and no hidden SEX scenes, and no one is SHOOTING anyone, and it is just plain FUN. so i was completely floored recently when i heard someone dissing it. at a restaurant the other night, we were seated next to a large table, headed up by some blowhard who felt entitled to loudly express his opinions to everyone at his table and to anyone in earshot. in addition to letting everyone around him know that he was an attorney (which will get you killed in some parts of texas), he loudly proclaimed that GH was a terrible game and that it was giving kids the false impression that they were really learning how to play the guitar. all the members of his party bobbed their heads up and down and murmured their agreements. my kids just looked at me.
dude…it’s a GAME. and you probably bought it, but you suck at it. admit it, you wanted to rock when you were young but you were probably in the latin club instead. you obviously were never in a band (or in BAND for that matter) because nobody in their right mind thinks this is REAL guitar playing. even slash got hooked on this game while touring, because it helped him unwind after an evening of thrashing. was he offended? no. did he get incensed because he thought it was infringing on his turf? no. it was just a game and he liked it, and kept playing and playing until he beat the damn thing (level two only, not expert – i feel in good company) and then he decided to endorse the effer because he thought it was so great. so there. geez. go back to practicing something you might know something about and shut the eff up. if it’s good enough for slash, it’s good enough for me.
so anyway, i am trying to work my way through level three (i hate the orange button) and have even read that there’s a duet challenge dubbed the “joan and lita award” but i haven’t found it so far.
i can’t wait. i’ll have to find another mom in the neighborhood to jam with me.