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Acoustic Guitar Hero wanted.

Byline: Hilarie Stelfox

IT'S not difficult to see how neighbours could be irritated by budding Guitar Heroes.

After all, once you've heard School's Out For Summer or Mississippi Queen for the 14th time in one afternoon you start to go slightly stir crazy, even if this is the sort of music you normally like. Which I do.

So it comes as no surprise to learn this week that the interactive game has become the subject of the first court action in the country over noise from a games console.

In fact, I'm just surprised that it's taken so long.

Firstborn has all manner of noisy games, in which virtual players are blown up, splattered and squished. He plays on the computer, which is only a few feet away from our shower room. It's most disconcerting to be taking a relaxing shower with the sound of mortar bombs rattling the cubicle door, but I'm getting used to it..

In the living room, The Guitar Hero Girl is frequently to be heard strumming away to Welcome to the Jungle or something catchy by Black Sabbath. When she had her birthday party, there was an orderly queue around the room of teenagers awaiting their turn - such is the addictive power of Guitar Hero.

For those not familiar with its seductions - this game is a sort of karaoke for would-be rockers, but requires no musical skill whatsoever.

Players strum a small toy guitar and press colour-coded keys on the fret board in order to 'play' a famous rock song.

Better than air guitar, Guitar Hero provides hours of obsessive fun for those playing - each song can, and frequently is, played over and over until perfected and then moved up a notch to a more difficult level. It's not quite as much fun for those listening.

As with most things, Guitar Hero is fine in moderation, although I can't help feeling that it would be better if the game was actually teaching people how to play the guitar for real. Clearly in the case of Darren Madigan, fined pounds 270 with costs of pounds 350, it would have been better if he had taken up the classical guitar.

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GUITAR HERO: feel the noise
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Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Aug 9, 2008
Words:370
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