Real music, fake guitars

The two hottest videogame (console, not computer) titles of the season, according to the San Francisco Chronicle – Rock Band and Guitar Hero III – are also among the most social. "The fun ramps up considerably with more players." On the other hand, "there's something mildly distressing about living in a society where cash-strapped public schools are more likely than ever to be cutting their music programs, and yet the must-have game of the season teaches you to play a fake guitar" and "the plastic Guitar Hero guitar is pretty much useless around the campfire. (Even as kindling.)" But writer Peter Hartlaub is only half serious (don't miss the wisdom of his distinction between "happiness" and "fun."

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