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GDC 08: Nick and Linde rock Guitar Rising

2:42 AM on 02.23.2008 // Aaron Linde

A week or two ago, I was driving home from the bank and lamenting the fact that I have no artistic skill beyond my mediocre ability to sculpt with moldy mashed potatoes. "Why!?" I cried, nearly plowing into several pedestrians. "Why can't my useless Guitar Hero skills translate to a useful real-world activity that could, quite possibly, win me some ladies?"

Not a day later, I was introduced to Guitar Rising, which Nick Chester and I got to demo on the show floor at this year's GDC. Adopting the conventions of the many guitar-based rhythm games now available, Rising takes it a step further and uses a USB dongle to hitch up the guitar of your choice to your PC, and prompts players to hit frets and strings to play along with some pretty choice music. While it's not necessarily designed to turn you into a guitar god overnight, from our short time with it, it really seemed like a product that could boost dexterity. And these pudgy fingers need all the help they can get.

Attaching that competitive element and a score to the act itself can keep people coming back, and might help to develop some of those dormant or otherwise nonexistent skills. I sucked something fierce, but hey -- if a few weeks of Guitar Hero could see me up to expert level, what would a few months of Guitar Rising do?

Aaron Linde,
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