Gamer’s Vault – Gitaroo Man [PS2/PSP]

We interrupt your usual morning of In Your Ears playlisty goodness for something new and unexpected… Fear not, we will be pumping some new tunes your way next week but for now…

Welcome, one and all to the vault! We at The Killing Tree Words are getting on a bit in our old age… We lived through Sega Megadrives, Goldeneye and Mario Kart and we had an idea! Why not have a weekly feature on video games we bloody loved in our youths that the younguns can find really confusing and hopefully bring some nostalgia to our older readers and maybe influence you to have a trip to eBay to pick up a dusty old console for a £10er. So here goes, sit back, enjoy and take a trip down memory lane with us and maybe, just maybe, you might find a hidden gem you’ve never even heard of.

Gitaroo Man is a rhythm-based video game with the soundtrack being provided by Japanese-rock band COIL It saw a European release for the PS2 in 2002 and was re-released on the PSP in 2006. Gitaroo Man is about U-1, a young boy who is frequently ridiculed by classmates and passed over by Little Pico, the girl of his dreams. U-1’s talking dog Puma teaches him to play the guitar and reveals to him that he is the last legendary hero of Planet Gitaroo, and the possessor of the Last Gitaroo. Whenever they are attacked, Puma transforms into Puma AC-30 and gives U-1 the Gitaroo, transforming him into Gitaroo Man.

gitaroo3

So what can I say about this game… It’s Japanesey as hell. But what a soundtrack! I first played this game when I was still in school and was hooked by the stunning visuals and bizarre story as well as the variety of music you had to shred your way through. The story sees the protagonist U-1 starting off in his bedroom practising guitar on a tennis racket until his room in invaded by the demon Pampas (ridiculous demon baby in a nappy FYI) who he proceeds to beat by firing blasts of energy from his mighty Gitaroo. It was an insane rhythm game and sat in its own little niche for its time. The controls were as basic as following a line on the screen with your analogue stick with the occasional button bashing sections but it required constant replaying to achieve a perfect score in any level! For those who’ve played this game, I think you’d agree that master mode was a bitch! My personal highlights would be playing through the reggae level while playing a theremin inside of a giant fucking robot! I insist that if you haven’t heard of this game, get yourself on Youtube right now and see how crazy this game was!

words by Elliott Stubbings

Special thanks to Wikipedia for all their researchy needs!

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