Guitar Hero: Smash Hits is not a ‘new’ game. Smash Hits merges the greatest hits from past Guitar Hero games with the GH World Tour framework—and really, that’s all there is to it. That doesn’t mean that Smash Hits is a bad game, however—far from it. If you’re a newcomer to the series, or simply a Guitar Hero fanatic, Smash Hits is worth checking out for a myriad of reasons.
Back in the early days of Guitar Hero, many of the songs were covers. All 48 songs featured in Smash Hits are master tracks and have been re-tuned to support Guitar Hero World Tour’s fresh features. The first and undoubtedly most meaningful addition is the inclusion of full band support. Now, not only can you shred through DragonForce’s “Through the Fire and Flames” on guitar and bass, but you can pound it out on the drums and belt it out on the mic as well. All of World Tour’s other features, including the ‘GHTunes’ music creation tool, Rock Star Creator, and eight-player ‘Battle of the Bands’ mode, also make the jump to Smash Hits.
The 48-song setlist promises “the best of Guitar Hero music,” and for the most part it delivers. There’s a great amount of variety, from classics like Deep Purple’s “Smoke on the Water” and Kansas’ “Carry on Wayward Son” to more recent hits like DragonForce’s aforementioned “Through the Fire and Flames” and Wolfmother’s “Woman.” We would have liked to see more than 48 songs, however. For a full-priced retail game, couldn’t Activision have thrown at least 60 tracks on the disc? At least all songs are available in quick play from the very start.
Honestly, that’s about it. There are other elements that could be discussed, like the game’s polished presentation and “career” mode, but really, it’s just Guitar Hero. Smash Hits is great for the extremes: it’s a must-buy for the casual player who missed the early games, and it’s perfect for hardcore players who want to revisit their favorite songs on all of the instruments. For the mid-level, average Guitar Hero player, however, it’s a bit too much money for too little content. After all, Smash Hits is just a glorified track pack—at least it’s a damn good one.
-The Final Word-
Smash Hits is just a glorified track pack, but at least it's a damn good one.