Another reason why I love my PS3
The PS3 really was one of my favourite purchases - and now that the HDTV war seems to have been won by blu-ray, I'm hoping that high-definition will take off. At the moment, our small branch of HMV stocks a small number of blu-rays, many of which fall under the "naff blockbusters" category.
At the moment, I'm addicted to Guitar Hero 3 after the streetwise 20-something nephews of my fella introduced me to it recently. It's a childishly simple, yet hatefully addictive Playstation game where you have to emulate playing a guitar by pressing coloured buttons as they flash up quickly on the screen while a jolly tune plays in the background. There are different levels of difficulty and the better you get at it, the more songs you unlock. As you "play" the notes, a rendering of a "cool" rockstar jigs on a stage, while an audience bang their heads in appreciation (if you make too many mistakes you get booed off-screen). I could manage Easy level, when only three keys are involved, but I'm afraid that once the ante was upped to Medium with the introduction of the blue key (which exposes how weak your little finger is), it was a case of "off! off! off!" and my dreams of rock stardom were over before they had begun.
Some of the songs involve bands which formed after 1995 (when I stopped paying attention to modern music), but there are also some old favourites like Paint it Black and the fabulous Barracuda by Heart.
In a way the game is a teaching tool in that you learn about keeping in time with a beat - although pressing a blue key is by no means the same as playing a chord like C7. On the other hand, perhaps it will interest more people in music as well as introducing them to a wider range of songs (myself included). It's also fun, if a bit wearing on the hands - my father-in-law who is 70 had a go, and after one song his hand had got stuck in a kind of claw position.