Metal yeah, love it, rock on! I am a closet head banger with short hair, boring clothes and good overall hygiene. Sure this summer I will rock out to the likes of Slayer, The Stooges, Alice Cooper, Dio, Iron Maiden, Mötley Crue and Anthrax and then I will have fixed myself up with some proper smell, band tee and still short but at least greasy hair. The Roadie is all about being a proper metal head, a proper slob eating pizza found under the sofa and brandishing infected tattoos.
The Roadie is the first rhythm game with a pure metal direction to the music.(Well Tapulous Metallica Revenge might have been there before it) A rhythm game is never better than the music it comes equipped with, and there the first real concern with The Roadie rears it’s ugly head. The music is written specially for The Roadie, and as far as I have played there aren’t any known licensed tracks in sight. The music is all about heavy riffing and drumming, and after just a level or two you are sick of it. No lyrics, no growling, no snarling and no falsetto power metal singing means that all you listen to is riffing. I love hearing Hetfeld or Mustaine let loose for a while in the middle of a track but I wouldn’t like to hear 4 minutes of heavy riffing. Instrumental metal can be really good such as the post-metal sound of Isis and Pelican but those rely on slow intricate progression. The varied instrumental tracks by Metallica rely on variation, emotional context and superb workmanship. In The Roadie it feels like loads of riffs and bridges have been loaded into a sequencer set to just go for 3-4 minutes.
You are The Roadie, and move from left to right killing bugs, aliens and robots that got released when you mishandled an amplifier. You have to hit the skulls when notes line up on any of the left or right guitars. I found that the tap recognition was a bit off, and had better luck just tapping both skulls at a steady pace without caring about hitting the notes correctly. If you miss to much the electric wall following The Roadie will kill you until you are dead, and unable to head bang anymore.
The graphics are simple but yet kind of cool with the on screen Roadie shooting flames from his guitar. 2-d cartoon artwork with nice effects and lighting. The graphics could probably be salvaged, and reused for some kind of platformer instead of this poor rhythm game.
If you are the kind of person who sets a riff on repeat for 15 minutes on your stereo, and never got a short haircut or personal hygiene you will probably enjoy The Roadie. To most of us the playlist is too much about metal riff masturbation, and too little about harmonies, melodies and lyrics. The slightly off gameplay also makes me unable to recommend the game. If you still are a closet head banger get the lite version. The lite gives you enough metal riffing to last you until the festivals this summer.