Guitar Hero Aerosmith Review - 07/10/2008

And so it begins, the endless torrent of yearly expansions for another lucrative franchise, designed to milk the fanbase for all it’s worth. The subtle difference here, however, is that this is Guitar Hero, which at least makes this latest effort worth investigating.

Now, let’s get one thing straight. Guitar Hero: Aerosmith is overpriced. The game is built around the same engine used to create Guitar Hero 3, so that means no new features or gameplay changes can be found. Furthermore, it does not support downloadable content, so the 41 songs on the disk make Aerosmith a like it or lump it affair. Your affinity for the title band obviously plays a large part in deciding whether or not this is worth the price of admission. The co-op career mode, introduced in Legends of Rock, is also, for no clear reason, absent as well. It comes as no surprise then that you find yourself asking “so what’s in it for me?”

To make sure the core Guitar Hero fanbase is catered for, each set features two songs from other bands (who are Aerosmith favorites, apparently). “Dream Police”, “I Hate Myself for Loving You”, and “All Day and All of the Night” are fantastic fun, and they’re right up there with best stuff from the early games. The Aerosmith tracks, regardless of whether you’re a fan of the band or not, are mixed. “Sweet Emotion”, “Ragdoll”, and obviously “Walk This Way” are all fine, but the earlier tracks are disappointing.

If you love the band you'll love the game, but is it worth the RRP?

The single player is structured in the traditional Guitar Hero way, with new songs and venues unlocked when the preceding set list is completed. The difference here is that the campaign charts the progress of Aerosmith’s development, with nice but brief video introductions that provide a glimpse into what life was like on tour. This is a very incomplete account of their rise to fame, as the videos lack the depth of a full length biography.

In response to the cries of some fans, the overall difficulty has been scaled back, so Guitar Hero 3 fans looking for a deeper challenge will be disappointed. Additionally, the unlockable in game content lacks variation. The usual selection of new characters, guitar skins, and bonus tracks (all of which are exclusively Aerosmith) are all well and good, but there’s nothing new! The Aerosmith twist on the extras is appreciated, but there isn’t enough here to feel like you’re getting your money’s worth.

More of the same Guitar Hero gameplay - or somewhat less actually if you judge by the content.

At the end of the day, this is still Guitar Hero. The refined note detection that Neversoft introduced in Legend of Rock is present and accounted for, and no-one can argue with the sound quality of the tracks (37 are master recordings). There is an overriding sense however that this has been very poorly marketed. Guitar Hero: Aerosmith is a glorified downloadable track pack presented exclusively on a disk. The release of Tomb Raider: Anniversary via the Xbox Live Marketplace was a great way to handle distribution of a straight up expansion. Aerosmith has been advertised as a completely separate entity, but it doesn’t contribute enough to the franchise. What you see is what you get, and if what you get is a single player lacking content, and a multiplayer lacking features, does that warrant the cost of a full priced game? We don’t think so.

- Jon Titmuss


Fun to pick up and play, as always.


Great selection of other bands.




Limited widespread appeal.



Not worth the price of admission, perhaps even for devout Guitar Hero fans…