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Rythym Games Diminishing Return

Rhythm game popularity has seen a dramatic rise over the last few years with juggernauts like Guitar Hero and Rock Band. I didn't really get into them back when the original Guitar Hero came out in 2005, mostly because I didn't see the value ins spending $60 on a game and $50 each for the guitar game controllers. Of course trying and failing miserably at it at a Gamestop didn't help either. Then while I was at another retail location I picked up the display and much to my surprise and delight I did pretty dang good. (It wasn't until later that I realized that the first time I played it was set to hard. ) Anyway, so after playing Guitar Hero on easy I was like "Hey this is pretty fun. I played a song I knew, and this is a great way to fulfill my rockstar dream without having to learn an instrument, put any effort into anything, or take any risks. Sounds pretty win-win. So I went out and got Guitar Hero II and a couple of guitar controllers on ebay. I played the game pretty non-stop for like two weeks. Two weeks is all it took for me to get incredibly bored with the song lists, single-player mode and multi-player modes. Seriously bored. But then something epic happened......Harmonix released Rock Band(to the tune of $170 no less)! I of course didn't buy it, but some people I knew had. So there I was, playing in a "band" with some buddies, and we were taking the "world" by storm. The songs were fresh and recognizable. The custom character mode was sweet. Winning fans and "challenges" was exciting. But then after a couple of days of playing that I started to notice the boredom creeping in. I guess what I'm trying to say is that no matter how good the songs are, the fact that you play them a million times in a row makes the game really suck to play. Plus to get anywhere in the multi-player portion you have to have other people who are actually good at the game playing with you. Unless you live in a dorm good luck getting that to happen. I think the Law of Diminishing Return applies quite heavily to rhythm games. Of course rythym games have come a long way in the last year. They've increased their plastic peripherals, become a DLC juggernaut with weekly song releases available at a premium cost and they've even entered the portable gaming arena. Perhaps the weakness of the diminishing return is rather a strength. In order for fans of the genre to continue finding value in their games they must continue to invest in downloads of preferred tracks. It's genius really. Make a game fun enough to justify an initial purchase but boring enough to demand additional purchases to keep it relevant. I, of course, have no problem with this idea. People gots to get paid right? If there's one thing to be said in support of rythym gaming it's that it opens up more casual gamers to areas they might now have otherwise be interested in. That counts for something right?
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