Guitar Hero 4 instruments, song creation detailed

Latest <em>Game Informer</em> spills beans on cymbal-enabled drum kit, character and guitar creation, song-creation toolset, and music sharing.

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Earlier this week, rumors surfaced that the the June issue of Game Informer would be jam-packed with details of Activision's Guitar Hero 4, due out this fall. That issue has since arrived in subscribers' mailboxes, confirming the accuracy of the original post and providing more details on developer Neversoft's second crack at the rhythm gaming franchise.

As initially revealed by Activision CEO Bobby Kotick in a recent interview, Guitar Hero 4 will add drums and vocals a la Rock Band. Game Informer's feature includes a shot of the referenced drum kit, which includes three pads, two elevated cymbals, and a pedal (as opposed to Rock Band's four pads and a pedal). For those keeping track, that means the Guitar Hero 4 kit has one extra input than the Rock Band equivalent, raising compatibility questions for the two series' instruments yet again. The developer is going wireless with Guitar Hero 4's drum pads, and will be making them pressure-sensitive so the game can tell if players are wailing on the drums or meekly tapping them.

The details in Game Informer also clear up the mystery surrounding the "innovation" which Activision promised was coming to the Guitar Hero series in a recent earnings report conference call. The article outlines the game's studio mode, which will give users a variety of ways to create their own songs. Players will be able to jam along with one of the game's existing tracks, record songs as they're played, or meticulously detail note charts.

As rumored, the game will also allow users to share the songs they create. Players will initially only be able to upload five songs for others to enjoy, but if those tracks are rated highly by other users, the creators might "get signed," raising the cap to 10 songs or more.

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