MadCatz, the maker of the new Rock Band 3 drums, keyboard, and Pro Mustang Guitar released their Guitar to the public this week. If you have always wanted to learn how to play guitar but never had the $400 to put down on a real guitar and amp, then this might be a great way for you to learn the basics. On the other hand, if you are merely a music video game player, this guitar may overwhelm you, which can be both a good thing and a bad thing.
There are a lot of good thing, for one this guitar adds infinite additional hours to the game, with all the trainers and learning all the songs you can learn in Pro mode, you’ll spend hours on it before mastering this aspect of Rock Band 3, if you ever do. The Pro Guitar mode is also extremely challenging, and any would-be-shredder on a five button toy guitar will be in for rude awakening and will really have to learn how to play the song in order to master the game on Pro mode’s hardest difficulty.
I also like the look of the guitar and sturdiness of the strings, fret buttons, and guitar neck. The Xbox buttons, start, back, lettered buttons, and d-pad all work flawlessly and are mapped out really well. There is a midi-connector on the end of the guitar to hook up to your computer or other midi devices, turning the guitar into a real digital instrument that you could play real notes on and make real music with.
The bag things are the guitar strings are not colored, are all the same size, and are too close to one another, making my head dizzy at times. The buttons on the frets are raised a bit too high and are really close together making pulling off power chords a real challenge, but then again it is suppose to mimic the real deal, and playing a real guitar isn’t easy either.
Outside of those minor quibbles, mostly based on my poor guitar playing skills, this is by far the coolest guitar peripheral on the market today. If you are a Rock Band fanatic you’ll have to purchase Pro Mustang Guitar which sells for $134.00, but don’t let the price scare you away, you’ll easily get countless additional hours of game play out of Rock Band 3 and learn a lot of songs on guitar, which is a pretty great deal for the price.
There is also a real Fender Guitar being released in spring of 2011 that is equipped with a digital sensor guitar neck and strings so you can play Rock Band 3 with it. I will do a review of the Fender when I get my hands on it early next year.