Friday, January 28, 2011

Actually, they're kind of thin

I have absolutely no knowledge of the 'club scene'. I have no idea what kind of music they play, what kind of people go there, what exactly they do and with whom, what they drink, or if there are any in my general area. I have actually been to one club, but that was many years ago in the former Russian republic of Estonia (true story) and I don't remember much of it for strictly beer related reasons. In spite of this I get the impression that DJ Hero 2 is a better representation of the music customarily spun in such places. The first game took a song from one genre that I just might have heard of and mashed it together with a song from another genre that I hadn't. The result was sometimes very good, sometimes painful, but always interesting. DJ Hero 2 skips the songs that I might have heard and jumps right to mashups of songs that fall cleanly outside of any genre I own or would actively listen to. It is undoubtedly more authentic, but much less listener friendly for the middle aged dude sitting on the floor of his basement because he has yet to replace the chair he broke last month.

Not that that should remind you of anyone.

DJ Hero 2 has made many improvements as a game over its ground braking forerunner. They have taken three buttons, a turn table, a cross fader and dial that I still do not fully understand and thrown them together in more combinations than you would think possible. I hung in and played it on hard for a little longer that last time, that is to say at all, and had much more success. You don't fail a song in DJ Hero, which I applaud, the mix just sounds terrible and it is all your fault. Virtual ladies in impossibly tight hot pants mock your turn table inadequacies, but at least you get to finish the mix. The only thing holding this game from being an absolute triumph of a sequel is, at least to me, a less interesting set list. This opinion is based entirely out of ignorance and is therefore meaningless, but DJ Hero did not sell amazingly well, and I don't think DJ Hero 2 did much better, so at least making an attempt to appeal to those with no rhythm and no desire to clubbing would seem like a good idea.

That fact that this comes from Activision, a company looking to 'exploit' its properties on a yearly basis, is all the  more confusing. DJ Hero 2 is genuine to the point of it being a detriment. Not a single DJ has morphed into a cow monster or zombie/mummy hybrid, so someone is clearly not trying hard enough.

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