Wednesday, May 30, 2007

An Interesting Discovery

I received my replacement Xbox 360 early last week, but didn't play Guitar Hero II for four more days.

I'd been chasing 10k here and 20k there on my Career score just to compete on the Xbox Live Leaderboards, and I realized that I really wasn't having nearly as much fun as I had been before. Plus my hands were kind of of heavy and a little sore--you know the feeling. So I wasn't even playing as well as I thought I could.

When I sent the 360 off for repair, it forced me to stop playing for almost two weeks. In that time, my hands felt much better.

So last Saturday, I decided to sit down and play Jessica on Hard. Once. It's one of my favorite songs, and I hadn't been able to 5-star it on the 360.

No warm-up. Just started the game up and played.

I realized as soon as I started playing that my hands were fast. Very, very fast, at least for me. It took 10-15 seconds to get locked in, and I gave some points away early, but I still 5-starred it.

Then I played "Carry On Wayward Son," which is a song I've never been able to 5-star on Hard. I didn't this time, either, but I did get 91%, which is quite a bit better than I'd ever played before.

Then I stopped for the day. Total playing time was 10-15 minutes.

I didn't play on Sunday. On Monday, I played "Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo" on Hard. It's an absolute bitch to play--I'd never even 4-starred it on Hard. Again, though, I could tell that my hands were really, really fast, and I did 4-star it.

And stopped.

Today, after taking Tuesday off, I played "Carry On Wayward Son" once on Hard and 5-starred it.

And stopped.

So if you're having a hard time improving any of your scores, try this: take a few days off. Then, when you start playing again, only play for 10-15 minutes at a time. I know, it sounds like you'd actually get worse, but I'm playing some passages that are absolutely ridiculous (for me) because my hands are so fast at first.

I can't explain how that all works, but there's no mistaking the feeling.

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