Guitar Status: June 2, 2013

Jun 02 2013

The new piece this week was Call Me. Fun to play; at first, the game said I wasn’t doing very well, though. This sometimes happens with power chords, and I think the problem here was exacerbated by the fact that the chord wasn’t repeated, giving the game fewer chances to do its note detection; after playing around with it for a while, I decided that the game was actually accurately reporting that I sometimes was only strumming two of the strings instead of three. So, nice to have improved my playing that way, I only wish the game’s feedback had been a bit more direct.

I’ve (somewhat accidentally) unlocked master mode in a few more songs; I ran into The Guns of Brixton in an encore on Saturday, flubbing it completely, so I spent a bit more time with that song over the weekend. It points out something that sometimes happens with Rocksmith: the song has a basic repeated chord structure, but in some sections you only play partial chords, and which notes you play is pretty random. Also, there are a couple of basic strumming patterns, and which pattern shows up at a given time is similarly random. And there’s a real tension between that and playing the song from memory—I can easily play something from memory that will sound correct, but whether I happen to play exactly what the game expects is quite a bit more random. The game is forgiving, so if I want to maximize my score I can strum extra times and always play full chords, which will give me full points even if the game omits some of the strums or some of the notes of the chords, but doing that lessens the texture of the songs.

Fortunately, I’m not too score driven, so I don’t mind missing a few points while I explore songs. But it’s also probably just as well, given my temperament, that there are lots of songs where memorizing the whole thing is more reasonable.

Other than that, the standard stuff—a couple of events, which led to some focused practice on a few of the songs; more Tom Sawyer arpeggio practice; and a few playthroughs of some of my favorite songs.

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