really is the perfect showcase for illustrating... the limitations of the PS2. I try desperately to avoid scores being affected by "comparisons" to specific games - especially the same game on another platform. I attempt to review a game based on what that game
is, not what it could have been. However, the differences between the PS2 version of Band Hero
and the PS3/360/Wii version of Band Hero
reads almost identically to the list of things that make Band Hero
interesting on those platforms. Without the ability to use music from other games and to export music to those games, the music selection becomes much more restrictive. While I don't want to take points off of the score for this game not being flexible and allowing all four players to play whatever instrument they want, that gimmick helps to justify the release of Band Hero
as a game
, rather than a Track Pack. Of course, if it were a Track Pack for the PS2, it would still need to be a standalone game, since the PS2 doesn't do DLC.
With the PS2 reaching the years when it can no longer remember its heyday (and enjoys heart problems and incontinence), I would expect that most people considering this version are very limited in their game-purchasing budgets. Band Hero evidently understands this and is compatible with a wide variety of controllers, making it easier to fill out a band-worth of equipment with whatever you can find or whatever your friends already have. I played one song where I played with one Xbox 360 (USB) Rock Band guitar, one old-skool Guitar Hero PS2 guitar and a Rock Band microphone (from the PS3 version of the game) - all by myself - with all of the difficulties set to Beginner. (I got three stars, by the way.)
In the end, the PS2 version of Band Hero can be seen as either a stripped-down version of Band Hero or a re-skinned mainstream version of Guitar Hero with Choreography. Either way, the load times are hard to forgive. If you have a PS2 (and that's all you have) and you like Guitar Hero games conceptually but prefer the music in Band Hero, then this is the game for you. If, however, you have a more recent system or plan to get one in the near future, you should get the PS3, 360 or Wii version. There are a lot of features out there... they're just not in here.