Activision's being pretty guarded with DJ Hero at the moment. Not only is it available only behind closed doors at its E3 2009 booth, but even then we weren't able to get our own hands-on time with the game, relegated instead to playing guitar along with someone else on the deck through that Monkey Wrench / Sabotage mashup. We did, however, get a chance to play take it out of the darkly-lit room and get a good feel of its weight and build quality, which we might add is pretty solid. Click on through for our full impressions and a video showing off the DJ vs. guitar mode.
DJ Hero hands-onSee all photos
The turntable rotates a smooth 360 degrees, and each of the three disc-based buttons have a well-defined texture and provide needed traction. Gameplay features taps and scratches, with single notes requiring a tap, bars requiring holding the button while scratching. There's also a blue bar that moves left or right, indicating where you should have the crossfade slider positioned. Finally, there's a knob that can be used at certain parts of the song actually rewind the track a few bars, letting you nail that sweet, sweet combo again for twice the points. Needless to say, you'll have your hands full here.
Your required directional pad and trigger buttons are hidden elegantly under a panel on top of the mixer (Wii users will actually be able to just slip the remote in here, instead), which we might add is quite glossy and fingerprint friendly. Our southpaw friends will be happy to know that the two sections can separate and you can reattach the turntable to the other side. Of course, none of this matters if the game doesn't kick out the jams, and unlike our time spent with Scratch: The Ultimate DJ, we didn't get to actually play here, so we're gonna have to reserve judgment at least a little longer.