Beats by Play – Music Games

I am a nerdcore gamer, and I also enjoy my music like everyone else who now hates MTV for not playing music anymore. When I finally got to combine the tranquility/ head-banging-ness of music with the challenge and sense of accomplishment of video games, my mind was blown. Two time-wasters for the price of one?! Count me in!

Ever heard of Guitar Hero™? This game literally makes you a living (room) rockstar. It’s a console game that gives you a guitar-shaped controller that lets you simulate playing rock music. And may I stress the fact that you get to rock out alongside an array of the most recognised hit-makers in this music genre from the likes of Ozzy Osbourne, Jimi Hendrix, Sum 41, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, just to name a few.

The challenge is to match your playing with theirs as best you can. You can also play against someone else, to see how well those late friday night practise sessions (when no one calls for a plan to go out) are paying off. And don’t worry, you don’t need new piercings, black make-up and goth spikes for this; you can strum this guitar in your birthday suit.   But why stop at guitars? Picture the full bachelor pad band: Electric Guitar, Bass Guitar, Drum Kit and Microphone … Is this how you wanna rock \m/ ?

Rock Band™ lets you annoy the living earthness of your immediate co-habitants. It is your own personal rock concert, all thanks to game developers that appreciate the need for music to be the integral part of a gaming experience. Your idle mates and you are the band and the roaring crowd, minus a mosh pit.

The awesomeness of karaoke with the tangibility of air guitar and air drums is something everyone should aspire to. Choose from a long list of legendary past and current rock bands, from Police to Beatles to Fall Out Boy, and go amp versus amp.   *talking to the student in headphones at the back of the class, yes the class* “Rock doesn’t get your head bobbing, toes tapping or knee slapping? Is there something for you?”

One answer, DJ Hero™. Yes it’s as awesome as you’re picturing it right now. Full simulation of turntabling mash up club bangers from the biggest names in the industry. The launch even employed the Eminem and Jay Z Renegade concert, and provided a special edition of the same, featuring a full DJ style kit: Turntable controller, DJ Table and carry case. From Daft Punk to 2pac; you have the chance to match up accented beats, crossfade between songs and scratch like a pro all in attempts to get a high score.

Yes, it’s just a game … but good music isn’t just the soundtrack, it’s the whole damn point! Don’t call me for karaoke on thursdays, call me for DJ Hero night at the student bar (the one with the weird looking bar stool at the end of that street). It’s a proven fact that ladies love DJs, so how much more will the love DJ Heroes? Exactly.   Cool instrument shaped controllers are all awesome, but sometimes, you just want to keep using your trusty mouse and keyboard for entertainment. Maybe all you want to do is play an almost mindless puzzle with background music. You’ve swept all the mines from pixel 1 to pixel 1600 (FYI, best game of last century) and you still have an hour to kill before an hour to your assignment deadline.

Audiosurf™ is the game for you. It’s simply a puzzle racer that adapts to the music you choose. Load your own tunes and fly a jet over the analysed beats till the song ends. Every song becomes it’s own unique race course, and all you need is your mouse/ keyboard.

Simple yet satisfying. Dynamic colours, vibrant motion, time-wasting luxury of a game. Music isn’t just an accompaniment, it’s a game that must be played and won.

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