The sequel to last year’s DJ Hero, was released almost year to date, DJ Hero 2 was released on October 19th in the USA. I managed to get my hands on this sequel, though I must admit I have never played the original DJ Hero, so I will not be able to compare this to the original, but instead I will compare it to the next closest things I played, Guitar Hero and Rock Band.

In DJ Hero 2 you play, surprisingly, as a Disc Jockey. To be able to play this game you need to have the DJ Hero turntable from DJ Hero, or you can purchase the $100 bundle with the turntable and DJ Hero 2 game included.

The controller itself consits of a moving turntable with 3 buttons on it, and along with this turntable there is a cross fader on the side. These buttons are the main components to DJ Hero 2. The controller also has a Euphoria button and a knob that can be rotated at certain parts for extra points.  The Euphoria button allows you to get a higher score multiplier and the game automatically does the cross fading for you, while in this mode.

The game basically consists of hitting the three buttons on the turntable at the right time, rotating the turntable, to imitate scratching a record, and cross fading between the tracks. There are parts where you can free play scratch how you feel best fit the song, and you can also decide how you want to fade the tracks, all on your own. But during most of the game, you are following the instructions which are presented on the screen.

DJ Hero 2 added two new components over DJ Hero 1, the ability to add a second turntable, and for someone to sing vocals. Personally, I do not have a second turntable, but I do have many microphones. I played a song, while my wife attempted to sing. Her thoughts on the vocals are that “it’s a mess.” Due to the fact that someone is DJ’ing the song, the vocals jump back and forth between the two songs. This makes it very hard to sing the song, and you have to 100% rely on the lyrics that are showing up on the screen, and not your memory of the song. I personally believe the vocal tracks were just added to put another bullet point on the box, and to be able to say it supports 3 people.

The single player has a career mode which they call “Empire”. In Empire mode you travel around the world to different venues. Each venue has a certain amount of set-lists, and also has a random amount of DJ Battles. The set-lists can consists of 3-5 songs back to back, while the DJ Battles just consist of one song, and you can actually win the battle before the song is even over.

I feel this game has potential, but as of right now it is just not there yet. DJ Hero 2 reminds me a lot of the early Guitar Hero days. I would get bored of just pressing the same 3 buttons, over and over again for every song, and moving the turntable back and forth. I personally like being able to switch between different instruments. I feel that Rock Band has spoiled me in this aspect. While playing DJ Hero 2, I would normally play one, maybe 2 set lists then turn it off and play something else, and I just couldn’t keep playing it, like I can Rock Band. Don’t get me wrong, most of the mixes are pretty good in the game, it’s just the game play I didn’t feel appealing.

Overall, I would not recommend this game for a newcomer into the series, who would have to spend $100 to get started. For someone who already has the turntable, and really enjoyed the first game, I would assume you would enjoy this game also.  To sweeten the deal a free patch was recently released that allows all DJ Hero 1 DLC to be playable in DJ Hero 2. I cannot honestly recommend this game over Rock Band 3, but everyone has different tastes, and I would say to try it at a friends, or in a store, before you buy it.

Enjoy the launch trailer below

Title : DJ Hero 2
Format : Xbox 360, PS3, Wii
* Developer : FreeStyleGames
Publisher : Activision
Release Date : 10/19/10

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