Despite a huge love for the Rock Band series, I'm truly excited for Guitar Hero: Metallica. It's been a long time coming and, finally, Metallica has a video game. Years of mullets and short hair and headbanging brought forth over 28 tracks from the band's history. Add 21 extra songs from the likes of Mastodon, Suicidal Tendencies, Foo Fighters, Mercyful Fate and Bob Seger (definitely the strangest name on the list but it's "Turn The Page" which Metallica covered) and this will be one of the most anticipated games of the year.
I, however, have some disappointment in the fact that Metallica's first foray into gaming comes in the form of a music game. Since the early 80's, game designers have found interesting ways to place their favorite bands into video games. No matter how bad the game was, there was still something somewhat cool about the idea. In the previous years, we've had to safely get Journey backstage, shoot down controlling, anti-music, anti-fun soldiers with Aerosmith (I get them wanting to stop Aerosmith now but then. We were still 2-3 years away from "I Don't Want To Miss A Thing.") and, best of all, running through the streets in search of tickets for Gwar. So one can see the disappointment in Metallica not being able to do the same thing. Since music games are huge (compared to other games, yes they are although sales are supposedly going down), this is not likely to change. If it were, I have a few ideas for a pretty kick ass Metallica game.
1. Metallica is shipwrecked on an island inhabited by vicious zombies. It's up to them to kill the zombies Gilligan's Island style...by harnessing the power of coconuts. Lars Ulrich searches the island for the pieces to build a coconut generator. Robert Trujillo's knowledge of engineering helps build the generator. To defeat the zombies, James Hetfield's voice stuns and distracts the zombies while Kirk Hammett plays a solo that shoots lighting from the headstock of his guitar thus blowing up their heads. After awhile, the zombies give up and learn to love the rock. The whole game ends Metallica playing a show for the zombies before being rescued by a helicopter flown by Rick Rubin.
2. Lars is kidnapped by angry Michael Bublé fans after Metallica had his show cancelled. The remaining members fight their way through the streets, Double Dragon style, to retrieve him. The final fight would consist of Bublé battling the band in a concert hall. Of course, the fight would be hard and that's why the band would have special moves. Robert would wrap the baddies in bass strings and hit them with a series of uppercuts. Kirk would grab the villains and start shredding them like a guitar until smoke blows out of them and they explode. Finally, James would scream at them to stun them before devouring them and spitting out the bones. If you get a three player game going, they would have a three person special move consisting of them severing a bad guy's body with their guitars. Awesome game...simply awesome.
3. A role playing game based on the band's career. Dave Mustaine gets violent and you kick him out of your party but then spend the rest of the game battling him. You battle and defeat the bus that killed Cliff Burton. This would lead in a journey to find Jason Newstead. After awhile, you travel to another land and meet Bob Rock who agrees to accompany your party. At this point in the game, your HP will be huge and your level should be at 27 or 28. This period will also be a darker period as in things will change. You'll battle Napster and create the song, "I Disappear." At one point, Newstead decides to stay behind as in he's not a fan of your journey. You travel once again and battle different bassists in caves and on mountains until you find Trujillo. The game ends with you finding Rick Rubin. Equipment changes would be getting rid of the mullet and adopting a shorter hairstyle, changing guitars or getting a new tattoo. As with any role playing game, there will be black and white mages, one character for strength and one character would be a thief. Not sure as to what member would be what but I'm certain that Kirk Hammett would probably be a black mage.
These are only a few ideas I have for a Metallica game that would have nothing to do with picking up a plastic guitar and sitting at a drumkit. I also think a bowling game would be a good idea to but it would never sell...just like the Kiss game on Dreamcast.