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  • Gamerscore at 10k, Blame Rock Band?

    Posted on January 18th, 2013 Shawn No comments

    Today, less than five years after creating my Xbox Live account, I surpassed the 10000 gamerscore mark. What game was I playing at the time? Well, I will have you know it was Rock Band Blitz. How fitting for a guy (and his blog) that had a major transition 4+ years ago when getting deeply addicted to Rock Band. (The blog had the major transition, not the guy).

    In today’s post, I look at rhythm games in general, Rock Band and Harmonix specifically, and my gamerscore. Let’s find out if Rock Band had a major contribution to my gamerscore 10k mark, or if something else got me here.

    Gamerscore as of January 18, 2013: 10010

    The first game I played with my gamertag, AppleTrak, was Rock Band on April 21, 2008.

    Rock Band – Gamerscore: 455
    Rock Band

    The game was released on November 20, 2007. Friends mentioned to me a game that players can play drums with and it got me interested. As a long-time drummer, and a former obsessive gamer, I decided to jump back into gaming. After five months of hearing about this game and playing it at Best Buy occasionally, I picked up an Xbox 360 and the Rock Band bundle.

    Read the rest of this entry »

  • Activision confirms DJ Hero 2

    Posted on June 8th, 2010 Simon No comments

    FreeStyleGames have officially announced DJ Hero 2 will be released in October 2010, which is no surprise because the game is published by Activision, famous for publishing mostly sequals.  Some of the details that accompanied the press announcement:

    • Artists include Chemical Brothers, Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Metallica, Lady Gaga and Rihanna (with 85 more to be announced).
    • The game will have full microphone support.
    • There is a new DJ controller, available in two different bundles.
    • The original DJ controller will still work with DJ Hero 2.
    • It will contain Social Multiplayer mode and Freestyle mode.

    If you own DJ Hero, FreeStyleGames have made available a track from DJ Hero 2 on XBox Live, Lady Gaga’s “Just Dance” with DJ Deadmau5 “Ghosts ‘n’ Stuff”.  The track is available for free until June 14th.  With the exception of Lady Gaga and Metallica, all of the artists they have announced thus far were in the first game in one form or another.  You may recall that Daft Punk were featured as unlockable, playable characters, so I’m sure we can look forward to something similar.  I’m a bit surprised to see Metallica, but there were a lot of contemporary rock songs mixed in with the first game (Third Eye Blind for example).

    I’m not sure how the vocals will come into play, whether they will be similar to what we see in Band/Guitar Hero or something new entirely, but I can guess that they will be handled similarly to how the guitar was featured in a small handful of songs in DJ Hero 1, which was actually one of the game’s weakest features.   The fact that they are selling a two-turntable-and-a-microphone bundle does lead me to believe that the focus is off of the single player DJ experience and on to something different.

    I quite enjoyed DJ Hero, it was surprisingly fun and the variety of music was a major factor in drawing my interest.  For once, I could appreciate the pacing that the designers were careful to create, and after several sessions of play I was (as one could expect) much more confident and skilled with the turntable.   Usually with most music games I can jump in on Hard / Expert and be able to hold my own; not the case with DJ Hero and the challenge of playing the harder tracks, coupled with playing the easier ones on a harder difficulty really kept the game fresh.   I’m looking forward to more announcements about the new game.

  • New Eminem & Jay-Z Mixes for DJ Hero

    Posted on April 1st, 2010 Shawn No comments

    So, full disclosure…I still haven’t picked up DJ Hero.  Why? I love rhythm games (GH, RB, DDR). I generally buy them on day 1 too.  But in 2009, now in 2010 I have over spent and just don’t have enough time to play all my games.  I’m currently playing Rock Band 2 DLC, Lego Rock Band, High School Musical 3 Dance (yes, you can laugh), and Shadow Complex.  Fallout, Castle Crashers, and New Super Mario Bros are waiting for me on the shelf too.

    Back to DJ Hero.  What I know of this game, and the in-store demos I have played, I love it.  Now, there is a release of two great (and two of my favorite) hip-hop artists with another set of mashups for the wheel of steel game.  Check out the announcement.

    Welcome to the latest DJ HeroTM VIP Newsletter. March is community appreciation month! We’ve scanned our fan sites and forums for the most common fan requests and are answering back with the release of brand new exclusive mixes and the standalone turntable controller.

    Three new JAY-Z and EMINEM mixes will be available for download on Xbox Live beginning March 18th and then on March 25th for Playstation Network and Nintendo. See below for more info.

    We agree that taking turns is no fun – two turntables are definitely better than one! Here’s your chance to discover why. The standalone turntable controller is now in stores, so get ready to battle your friends in 2 player DJ vs. DJ mode. If you haven’t picked up the game yet, check the details below for a killer offer!

    As always, you can learn more at on or follow us on Facebook and on Twitter to get the latest news and enter to win weekly giveaways. We’re giving away hundreds of turntables through Easter, so keep checking the community sites!

    -DJ Hero Team

  • DJ Hero now under $80

    Posted on December 8th, 2009 Shawn No comments

    GuitarHeroStore has DJ Hero (PS3, Xbox 360 & Wii) for $79 after using coupon code DJHPP1 with free shipping. If you didn’t get in on the Cyber Monday deal for $85, well, you lucked out.  This is $40 off the current retail price. This deal is pretty incredible. I haven’t picked it up yet, but this is incredibly tempting.

    Also you can purchase the PS2 version for $64 shipped.

    If you already have your hands on DJ Hero, please leave us a comment below and tell us what you think about the game.

  • 10 Games to Keep You Inside

    Posted on December 3rd, 2009 Shawn 1 comment

    The NY Times ( has compiled what they think are the top ten games to keep us fat and lazy on our couches. Well, not totally lazy, since many of the games require you to get off the couch to properly participate.


    Three of the games are on my wish list, so this article is likely going to get me to buy them sooner rather than later.

    Stay Inside With These 10 Games

    Published: December 2, 2009

    THIS year, the gaming industry offered up a seemingly endless array of reasons to stay indoors. From shooter games like Borderlands to new franchise releases like Halo 3: ODST, there were plenty of entertaining options to choose from across all platforms. Here are 10 selections, with manufacturers’ prices, worthy of their titles.

    ISLAND FUN Wii Sports Resort lets players team up with friends to win challenges.

    For the Wii; all ages; $50.
    You don’t have to be a fan of or at all familiar with the original Wii Sports to love its successor, Wii Sports Resort. The follow-up offers a dozen activities to engage in on Wuhu Island, like archery, swordplay and wakeboarding. You can compete solo or against other players. And if you’re feeling charitable, Resort also lets players team up with friends to help win challenges.

    REMAKE New Super Mario Bros. Wii maintains core elements of the original.

    For the Wii; all ages; $50.
    Old-school Nintendo fans who enjoy nothing more than rescuing the princess won’t be disappointed with the updated and aptly named New Super Mario Bros.

    Wii. While maintaining the core elements of the original game, Nintendo has introduced a new multiplayer mode and additional powers including a propeller suit that shoots players up into the sky. Even Mario has been given a makeover. The beloved character can now transform into, of all things, a penguin.
    For Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and the Wii; all ages; $50-$60.
    Madden NFL 10 isn’t just another football-inspired video game. This latest installment of the successful franchise is sure to win over even more fans — and with good

    reason. The Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions offer a cleaner interface that lets players battle for fumbles and drag defenders toward the first down, while competing with up to 32 teams. For their part, Wii players get their choice of three settings, All Play, Intermediate and Advanced.

    And if that doesn’t provide enough of an adrenaline rush, Madden fans can also play the game arcade style. This fast-paced, five-on-five gridiron version of the game lets players freeze out an opposing player, tweak skill levels, add extra linemen and more. Available as a $15 download from the PlayStation Store and on Xbox Live for 1,200 Microsoft points.


    IN THE FAST LANE Choose from more than 100 tracks and 400 customizable vehicles in Forza Motorsport 3, for Xbox 360.

    For Xbox 360; all ages; $60.
    With more than 100 tracks (the Amalfi Coast in Italy is a standout) and 400 customizable vehicles to choose from, you don’t have to be a car enthusiast to love the stylings and graphics of the Forza series. The game’s developers did a great job of simulating real driving conditions. Of course this isn’t real life, so if you don’t round a sharp corner quite so smoothly, Forza 3 offers a new Rewind feature that lets you try (and try) again. Tack on automatic braking, traction control and other driving assists and even a novice can feel like a speedster behind the wheel.

    For PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC; ages 13 and older; $50-$60.

    If it’s super heroes and action-adventure you’re after, Batman: Arkham Asylum will not disappoint. Based on the DC comic, players assume the role of the caped crusader and use detective mode, the bat claw and other tools at their disposal to help reclaim the asylum from the Joker and his gang of villains. As impressive as the arsenal of weapons and combination moves is the audio and visual presentation of the game itself, thanks in no small part to great voice-overs and a solid design layout.

    TREASURE HUNT Journey through a Himalayan valley in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves.

    UNCHARTED 2: Among Thieves
    For PlayStation 3; ages 13 and older; $60.

    This third-person shooter game puts players squarely in the shoes of the fortune hunter Nathan Drake as he treks through the Himalayan valley of Shambhala and other locales in search of lost treasure. Work alone or gather up to three players to help solve puzzles and defeat thieves. Stellar camera angles, realistic environments and textures add to this game’s mass appeal.

    For PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Wii; ages 13 and older; $120.

    For fans of the Beatles: Rock Band or Guitar Hero series, DJ Hero is another finely tuned musical game worth adding to a collection. Players can choose their songs, but DJ Hero goes even further by letting users create custom sets and even has a party mode feature. Notable DJs, including Cut Chemist, Daft Punk and Grandmaster Flash, have contributed their skills, which is reason enough to give this game a spin.

    For PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC; ages 17 and older; $60.

    ANOTHER WORLD The Sims 3 has a continuous neighborhood map to help Sims live in their virtual communities.

    Arguably one of the most talked-about games of the year, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 is not for the faint of heart. The first-person shooter game demonstrates the full and often bloody ramifications of battle, as innocent civilians and countless others meet their fate in environments like Afghanistan, Brazil and Washington. For fans of blood and gore, look no further.

    THE SIMS 3
    For PC and Macintosh; ages 13 and older; $50.

    If you’d like to introduce someone to the virtual reality world of the Sims, this third release offers the familiar do-it-yourself features of its predecessors with new and improved customization and editing tools, along with a continuous neighborhood map to better help Sims live in and maneuver around their virtual communities.

    BRAINTEASER Help solve a mystery in Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box.

    For Ninte ndo DS; ages 10 and older; $30.

    First-person shooter games tend to be crowd favorites, but there’s something to be said for a good brainteaser. Enter the successor to Professor Layton and the Curious Village, which offers over 150 puzzles that will help the archaeologist Professor Layton and his trusted assistant, Luke, solve the mystery behind the Elysian Box. It’s definitely thought-provoking, but you don’t have to s olve every puzzle to unravel the meaning behind the story.

  • DJ Hero for less than $85 on all Consoles

    Posted on November 30th, 2009 Pabel 1 comment

    If you are like me, and have been very interested in getting DJ Hero…but all the other expenses in your life have kept you away, you may want to think again.  The game with turntable which retails for $120, has just dropped to $84.95 at Amazon.  If you love the Guitar Hero and Rock Band game play, and also love remixes and mashups, this game really is for you.

    I played it at Best Buy this weekend, and am still on the fence about it.  But at this price, I think I am going to bite and get it.  How about you?  Do you have it? Will you get it?

    DJ Hero Bundle with Turntable

    List Price: $119.99
    Price: $84.95 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping. Details
    You Save: $35.04 (29%)
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