Guitar Hero II

8.5 Overall Score
Graphics: 6/10
Sound: 7/10
Controls: 9/10

Brought music games to the forefront

Most songs are covers

Game Info

Game Name: Guitar Hero II

Developer(s): Harmonix Music Systems

Publisher(s): RedOctane/Activision

Platform(s): XBox 360

Genre(s): Music

Release Date(s): April 3, 2007

ESRB Rating: T



Rock out!

It’s your band…can you take them to stardom?  This is your chance, make your character, assemble a team of rockers, and raise the roof as you rock out the guitar.

Guitar Hero II was the first music style game for the next generation consol (although it was a port from the PS2).  It’s innovative design and challenging songs made it ripe for copying, and this game really started the franchise.

The game is pretty smooth and the songs are decent.  At this point in the series however, many of the songs weren’t sung by the original singers and are covers…until the performers realized the marketability of the music game industry.  The songs lean toward metal or punk (though there are exceptions).  It also provided up-and-comers with a chance to showcase their music in bonus tracks which allowed some instant success.

The Guitar Hero II’s setlist:

Bad Reputation—Thin Lizzy

Beast and the Harlot—Avenged Sevenfold

Billion Dollar Babies—Alice Cooper

Can’t You Hear Me Knockin’—The Rolling Stones

Carry Me Home—The Living End

Carry on Wayward Son—Kansas

Cherry Pie—Warrant

Crazy on You—Heart

Dead!—My Chemical Romance

Free Bird—Lynyrd Skynyrd

Freya—The Sword

Girlfriend—Matthew Sweet

Hangar 18—Megadeath

Heart-Shaped Box—Nirvana

Hush—Deep Purple

Institutionalized—Suicidal Tendencies

Jessica—The Allman Brothers Band

John the Fisherman—Primus

Killing in the Name—Rage Against the Machine

Laid to Rest—Lamb of God

Last Child—Aerosmith

Life Wasted—Pearl Jam


Message in a Bottle—The Police

Misirlou—Dick Dale

Monkey Wrench—Foo Fighters


Possum Kingdom—Toadies

Psychobilly Freakout—Reverend Horton Heat

Rock and Roll, Hoochie Koo—Dick Derringer

Rock This Town—Stray Cats


Search and Destroy—Iggy Pop and the Stooges

Shout at the Devil—Motley Crue

Stop—Jane’s Addition


Surrender—Cheap Trick

Sweet Child O’ Mine—Guns N’ Roses

Tattooed Love Boys—The Pretenders

Them Bones—Alice in Chains

Tonight I’m Gonna Rock You Tonight—Spinal Tap

Trippin’ on a Hole in a Paper Heart—Stone Temple Pilots

The Trooper—Iron Maiden

War Pigs—Black Sabbath

Who Was in My Room Last Night?—The Butthole Surfers


You Really Got Me—Van Halen


Bonus Songs:

Arterial Black—Drist

Collide—Anarchy Club

Drink Up—Ounce of Self

Elephant Bones—That Handsome Devil

Fall of Pangea—Valient Thorr


Gemini—Brian Kahanek


Kicked to the Curb—Noble Rot

Laughtrack—The Acro-Brats

Less Talk More Rokk—Freezepop

Mr. Fix It—The Amazing Crown

One for the Road—The Breaking Wheel

Parasite—The Neighborhoods

Push Push (Lady Lightning)—Bang Camaro

Radium Eyes—Count Zero

Raw Dog—The Last Vegas

Red Lottery—Megasus

Six—All That Remains

Soy Bomb—Honest Bob and the Factory-to-Dealer Incentives

The Light that Blinds—Shadows Fall

The New Black—Every Time I Die


Trogdor—Strong Bad


Yes We Can—Made In Mexico

All the ladies love guys who play guitar…hero…

In this game the songs have to be “earned” through playing, and Guitar Hero had yet to realize the benefit of having online play.  The songs are quite challenging and the progressions of notes are well thought out…Something that doesn’t seem to be as thought about in current and later games.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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