What Guitar Hero Games are on PC?
Are you a guitar nerd or gamer wondering what Guitar Hero games are on PC? Do you worry if you can get the game and its instruments working on your computer? Then, you’re in luck.
The three most popular Guitar Hero games available on PC include; Guitar Hero III (GH3), GH: Aerosmith, and GH: World Tour (GH4). These three are the official Guitar Hero games for PC. However, there are also several rhythm video games like Clone Hero, Frets on Fire, and Performous, although all are fan-made but they are still playable on PC.
The first three Guitar Hero games released for PC; the Guitar Hero III (GH3), Guitar Hero: World Tour (GH4), and Guitar Aerosmith are available on both Windows and Apple’s Macbook. These were the initial official GH games for PC, and they came with USB-based instruments that worked solely with and for them.
A Collection of the Best Guitar Hero Games for PC
The table below classifies these PC-compatible Guitar Hero games into official games and the fan-made counterparts
|Official Game||Fan-made Game|
|Guitar Hero II||Clone Hero|
|Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock||Frets on Fire|
|Guitar Hero: World Tour||Performous|
|Guitar Hero: Aerosmith|
|Guitar Hero: Metallica|
|Guitar Hero: Van Halen|
The official games feature various soundtracks and set lists, a slightly different vibe, and, to some extent, various engine and gameplay technicalities.
The fan-made options lack the feel and flavor of the originals. Still, they are also reliable, easy to use and come with various modifications that improve the gaming experience.
With the wide range of games available, you can select from both officials from Activision and fan-made options developed by the gaming community.
Original Guitar Hero Games Compatible With PC
Here we discuss six official Guitar Hero games that are great on PC
Guitar Hero II
The Guitar Hero II represents the second major entry in the Guitar Hero franchise. It was released as the sequel to the 2005’s Guitar Hero initially in 2006 and 2007 for PlayStation 2 and Xbox 360, respectively. However, it can now be played on PC using the emulators, controllers, and/or other modifications created by gaming community members.
In addition to this, this Hero game retains the same gameplay as the original Guitar Hero but with an improved setlist, Hammer-ons/pull-offs (HO/POs), Practice Mode, and the multiplayer option.
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock is the fourth game and the third main installment in the Guitar Hero series, after Guitar Hero II. It is the first game in the franchise to be developed by Neversoft. This was after Activision acquired RedOctane, the previous owners of the franchise, and MTV games bought Harmonix, the initial developers.
The gameplay in Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock is similar to that of earlier series products. However, it comes with a more realistic guitar controller, a new Co-Op Career mode, an online multiplayer feature, and competitive challenges.
Bring out your inner rock star! Compete with other players online, and shred like you’ve never done before.
Guitar Hero: World Tour
Guitar Hero: World Tour is the fourth entry in the Guitar Hero series, developed by Neversoft and published by Activision.
In World Tour, the gameplay of previous games in the series was modified to include drums and vocals controllers and 4-player virtual band formation in addition to special guitar controllers. It also allows the creation, accumulation, and sharing of new songs to the setlist through “GHTunes”.
Now, you can play on your own, rock out with the band, or compete in a four-way Battle of the Bands with Guitar Hero: World Tour.
Guitar Hero: Aerosmith
Guitar Hero: Aerosmith was developed as an expanded version of GH III: Legend of the Rock but with slightly tighter HO/POs. It is based on the story of a rock band, Aerosmith; the first game in the series to focus on a single artist.
The gameplay follows the band’s career from its first show in 1970 to the halftime show at Super Bowl XXXV in 2001, highlighting the positive aspects of the band’s history.
Guitar Hero: Metallica
Guitar Hero: Metallica is the second band-related game in the series, after Guitar Hero: Aerosmith. Its story focused on the work and history of a heavy metal band, Metallica.
The gameplay is an expanded version of Guitar Hero World Tour, with guitar, drums, vocals controllers, single-player and band Career modes, and other features. However, it comes with an extra difficulty level, Expert+, in addition to the normal difficulty levels in previous games.
Guitar Hero: Van Halen
Guitar Hero: Van Halen is the third band-related game in the franchise. It revolves around the career of the rock band, Van Halen. Its gameplay is similar to Guitar Hero: Metallica but lacks drop-in/drop-out plays and other features.
Note that you can only play Guitar Hero III, World Tour, and Aerosmith without emulation. The rest requires a console, emulation, or that you install Xbox 360 Guitar Hero or any compatible controller on your PC.
Fan-Made PC-Compatible Guitar Hero Games
There are various unofficial versions of the game made by a group of creators and developers who are constantly updating and improving the software for the benefit of the community.
If you don’t mind the game’s story, visuals, or graphics and just want to play, then you can use any of these.
Clone Hero (CH)
The Clone Hero is an open-source game made by and for the gaming community with its own creators, influencers, and an active fandom.
In terms of dependability, usability, and other characteristics, Clone Hero stands out from other Guitar Hero games, official or derived. Most Guitar Hero gamers recommend Clone Hero because it is free and a little better than typical Guitar Hero games.
You can also easily import set lists from other games, download songs and charts, create and share custom charts, and play online. You can play CH using your regular computer keyboard or any controller.
Frets on Fire (FOF)
Frets on Fire is another free PC-compatible Guitar Hero-style game created by gamers with a massive base of user-generated content. It is also open source and works with all the GH instruments and the normal computer keyboard.
Performous is yet another good clone for Guitar Hero compatible with PC. It is open source, works with Guitar Hero equipment, and has improved features.
Controllers and Emulators for PC Guitar Hero Games
While these games are all playable on Windows and Mac, they were primarily designed for Xbox controllers. However, you can play any Guitar Hero game using any compatible controller and/or install the X360ce or any compatible emulation software on your computer.
Popular examples of these instruments are
- Xbox/PlayStation Controllers
- Dolphin emulator
- Wii remote
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Which Guitar Game is the Best?
This varies with different people. However, Guitar Hero III: Legend of the Rock and Guitar Hero: Metallica are highly ranked and recommended by gamers.
Q: Do all Guitar Hero Games Work on PC?
Not exactly. There are only three PC-compatible Guitar Games officially. However, there are clones of the game made by and for members of the music rhythm video gaming community.
Also, you can now play any Guitar Hero game using emulators like RPCS3, Wii remote, and Dolphin. Still, you may need to desynchronize the sound if your PC isn’t strong enough.
Q: What Makes the Clones Different from the Official Games?
Clones were made by former GH fans for gamers who still want to keep their shredding skills alive.
You won’t experience crowd-hailing or booing when playing games like Clone Hero. Also, storylines, sound quality, and visuals pale compared to the originals. The playing modes are also limited. Career, for example, isn’t available on most fan-made versions.
Now you can play Guitar Hero games on your computer. There are several options, from official to free open-source clones. Popular games include Guitar Hero III: Legend of the Rock, Guitar Hero: World Tour, Guitar Hero: Aerosmith, Clone Hero, Frets on Fire, and many others.
All you need to do is get the necessary instruments, set them up on your PC, and shred to your heart’s content.