Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Q&A: Kiss' Gene Simmons on 'Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock'

Q&A: Kiss' Gene Simmons on 'Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock'
USA Today

(Note: Gene appeared at the Paramount Studios in Hollywood last night for the red carpet premire of Guitar Hero:Warriors of Rock)

Ask Gene Simmons of Kiss about voicing the character of the Demi-God of Rock in the new Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock and he is quick to set you straight.

"Character is not the right word. That feels like a Ziegfeld Follies show," he says. "This is a persona."

That persona, the Demi-God, is at the heart of the story in the new Guitar Hero game. The game's developers at Neversoft took as a concept the "Monsters of Rock" and made transforming the game's characters -- Axel Steel, Judy Nails and the gang -- into part of the story line. The player must shred through the game's songs to unlock those character's superhero modes needed to help the Demi-God defeat The Beast that's threatening rock. "And then of course the next logical conclusion was to have the iconic Gene Simmons voice the Demi-God of Rock," says Neversoft project director Brian Bright, "who better to push it way over the top!"

Q: How did you get involved with Guitar Hero?
Gene Simmons: I've always been aware of Guitar Hero, obviously, because it's an iconic brand. I got a phone call from management saying that the people at Activision are interested and so on and so forth. ... Initially when I got the call, I wanted to know a little bit more. Is it going to be the same old, same old? What do you want me to do? Do you want to use a Kiss song? Is it just the general stuff and they said, 'No, no, no. We want to put Guitar Hero on steriods. We want to do the monster of monsters. We want to have the largest collection of rock songs, 90, we want you to be voice of Guitar Hero including becoming the Demi-God. You know, my ego, which is completely insatiable, started to salivate. If egos can. Mine can. I can tell you whatever I imagined the experience to be like, I was completely overwhelmed when I went to the Activision offices. ... I actually got to play a much earlier version, so I tried sitting down figuring this is going to be a demonstration of it. You immediately wind up getting up. It becomes a full body experience. From the visuals to the music, this rocks.

The character, the Demi-God of Rock, from the video game 'Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock'. Gene Simmons of Kiss supplies the voice.

The story seems to be straight out of a concept rock album.
There is a story, but the story is a multi-headed beast with so many different permutations, which is a big word like 'gymnasium'. You are part of the story. It can go in almost any direction. The most important part of this is it has an empowerment kind of thing. You become part of it. It is you. You are it. You may not be able to be the Demi-God but you'll know what it feels like. ... You get to bring out the inner rock star in you. And usually when you say, 'rock star' that means guys. This is for gals, too. Girls can get in there and rock out right along with the guys. In the cave man days, people used to play air guitar because everybody wants that feeling. This takes you in places you never imagined you would be.

link to the rest of story

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