Late last year, a then hardware-only manufacturer put its name on the map with the release of what is almost inarguably the best music game ever released. RedOctane used its experience making dance and drum gaming pads to design a guitar controller while it simultaneously hired veteran developer Harmonix to create the software half of the package. The result was Guitar Hero, a game that went from almost complete obscurity to selling over one million units in under a year - an especially impressive number considering the bundle runs for $70, but surprising to no one who has played it.
It's a year later and RedOctane and Harmonix are ready for their encore performance. Guitar Hero II expands upon the smash-hit original game in almost every way with a greatly expanded (and arguably better) track list, improved multiplayer support, a practice mode and more. The result is a game that seems to have almost everything you could have wished for in the sequel, aside from maybe a pack-in case of beer.