guitar tips

SadaiyappanSadaiyappan Unsigned
edited October 2010 in Rock Band
Hi can someone give me some tips on playing guitar on expert / hard?

How do you strum, alt or regular? Do you use only three fingers and slide your hand around or do you use all fingers ? Do you use a pick or use your hand?

I tried alt strumming and it's not working for me it's too difficult. When I try to alt strum fast repeated notes I end up missing most of the notes.. So so far I have been down strumming through everything and I have beaten most of the songs on hard.

Also what is the longest you have practiced one song? I have spent two hours on enter the sandman on hard and I still can't beat it..


  • Sarge51Sarge51 Road Warrior
    edited March 2008
    I personally just down-strum most of the time. But you really need to get in the habit of strumming up and down for parts that make your hand hurt. It'll help you once you get further and into Expert. Trust me.

    I use MOST of the time only three fingers, but are sometimes required to zip another finger around. I personally wouldn't try using your pinky.

    I use my hand. Cause I am hardcore.
  • TimesNewRomanTimesNewRoman Unsigned
    edited March 2008
    One of the first things that one of the people I was playing GH3 with when I started playing was to ask me how I was strumming. At the time I was only doing down strums and it was working just fine at that point. However he told me to learn to do a full up/down strum. That it might feel weird at first but to just get used to it. Now I do mostly up/down strum although I alternate with both or just down strumming depending on the note pattern. I also use 4 fingers. When you get into some of the songs later on with expert, sometimes you'll have GO-GO-GO-GO-GB-GB-GB-GB and unless you've got an ENORMOUS hand, it's not physically possible to hold both green and orange at the same time with just using your first 3 fingers. Other times, like with say Dead or Alive it alternates G-O-G-O-G-B-G-Y I think, and it's much much much easier to use all 4 fingers instead of having to slide your hand around THAT much with just the first 3 fingers.

    Longest I've practiced on 1 song, well, been stuck on 1 song, was the Rolling Stones song on hard (currently stuck there on expert now) for 3 weeks or so. I just couldn't get the intro down at ALL. Now Enter Sandman is causing me some trouble as well on hard.
  • whypick1whypick1 Headliner
    edited March 2008
    I only downstrum (probably because I started off with Frets on Fire), and I've managed to beat GH3 and RB on expert. There are some instances where alt-strumming is the only way to do it (like the chorus/bridge of Creep), and for those I just kind of suck it up and try not to miss too much.

    For grip, I use four fingers, but my "home" position is RYBO, as opposed to GRYB. I found that it's much easier for me to reach for green with my index finger than to reach for orange with my pinky. On sections where orange isn't hit for a while, I'll shift my hand left, but I do find it akward.

    I never practice. It's not something I enjoy doing. Granted, I've managed to beat every song I've laid my hands on without doing so (although some of those are by the skin of my teeth; Metallica DLC, looking at you), but I wouldn't advise people to not do so if they need to.
    edited March 2008
    When I strum, I typically just use down strums. My friends tell me I'm an incredibly loud strummer, I'm basically beating down on the strum bar with my thumb. The loudness (GH2 controller) keeps me on tempo better. I only alternate up/down when it is a long fast line of notes.

    I use all four fingers, and haven't had a problem with it really. My hands are pretty big, so it's easy for me to hit the orange button when need be. I've gotten fairly good at just sliding my pinky up, keeping my other fingers pretty much in the same place.

    I don't really use the practice mode much, but I was stuck on GGaHT on Expert guitar for over a month, until I finally beat it about a week ago. That's really the only time I had any real trouble with any song. I play on Expert for the most part, but tone it down to Hard when with friends (harder to focus and what not). I started with my friend's Guitar Hero 2 for the PS2 where I was only getting 3 or 4 stars on easy, and I've just played it so often to get better at it. It's really a "practice makes perfect" type of deal. The transition from Medium-to-Hard was pretty difficult, but Hard-to-Expert isn't too bad.
  • shadebugshadebug Road Warrior
    edited March 2008
    I find that on most things the downstrum works fine (upstrum for bass) and provides that extra immersion factor. As a guitarist you would never alt strum except in the same situation as when I recommend you should in rock band, that is on insanely fast bits and bits that are just too repetetive.

    I use my hand to strum, as I do in real life, though i know that the strat strumbar is well suited for plectra, so fun.

    If I'm playing for reals I use full handed and bring my right hand up to the solo buttons for solos (funny that). I try not to keep my hand in a home position, it's best to just know where your hand is and if you're used to having your hand in one position then moving it will make you lose track much faster (lets say if you need to do a really fast b,o,b,o,b,o,b,o,b,o,b,o and you move your index and middle finger down to do it quicker)

    I like to practice by using only three fingers (not the index) every so often, makes for a fun challenge
  • cossey420cossey420 Unsigned
    edited March 2008
    Actually 4 fngers is easier.and alt. picking is law,but only on repetitive like notes.But, i've played real guitar for 17 yaers and alt. picking,and pinky fretting are a automatic.So is the stretch for all 6 notes.practice with no music and at a slow progression play g,r,y,b, like you were tapping nerviously on a presice 1st and speed will come
  • simmiassimmias Road Warrior
    edited March 2008
    shadebug;372731 said:
    As a guitarist you would never alt strum except in the same situation as when I recommend you should in rock band, that is on insanely fast bits and bits that are just too repetetive.
    I'm curious... what kinds of music do you play on guitar that make you think this statement is true?
  • jtrousdjtrousd Road Warrior
    edited March 2008
    simmias;373028 said:
    I'm curious... what kinds of music do you play on guitar that make you think this statement is true?
    I'll agree with what this guy says. I've played a real guitar for a few years now, and there are plenty, plenty, plenty-o-times when I alternative pick even the slowest of tempos. It just feels better (I suppose once you get used to it) to go up, down, up down.

    Maybe he's a screamo sorta guy, or death metal. Aren't they insane when it comes to down-picking at freakish rates?
  • KaemonKaemon Opening Act
    edited March 2008
    I just use my thumb and my index finger to hold it and I just go up and down....

    But I mainly downstrum, except on fast parts... really just practice.
  • fiddolbrfrhofiddolbrfrho Opening Act
    edited March 2008
    if you're screwing up a lot when alt-strumming you're probably doing it too fast. consider that when you're alt-strumming your down strum is going to be going at half-speed... most people just take off and strum as fast as they can and fail not because they are missing notes so much as they are strumming between notes.

    and shadebug is completely 100% wrong. with a real guitar you alt strum CONSTANTLY, even on the slow stuff. that's just how it's done.

    you can practice alt strumming with the slow stuff too. find a song with some slow repetitive notes, and build your way up.
  • fiddolbrfrhofiddolbrfrho Opening Act
    edited March 2008
    btw an easy way to learn to alt strum is to only focus on the down strum, and try to hit every other note. don't even think about the up strum, just think about raising it between down strums.

    so if you're playing notes like:


    focus on playing the downstrum like this:


    and as long as you're moving the strum bar up and down evenly, you will hit all the notes.
  • shadebugshadebug Road Warrior
    edited March 2008
    I'll admit wrongness, I'm mostly a beginner on lead and finger pick on bass, so I wouldn't know. I was just under the impression that alt strumming was only really when you need the hand back up quick enough
  • HeadHunter67HeadHunter67 Road Warrior
    edited March 2008
    whypick1;372591 said:
    For grip, I use four fingers, but my "home" position is RYBO, as opposed to GRYB. I found that it's much easier for me to reach for green with my index finger than to reach for orange with my pinky.
    That seems like very sensible and practical advice - but it would seem that if you're over on green, you're more likely to encounter red notes and GR chords as well (not sure how it goes on Hard or Expert, still playing on Medium myself). At that point, do you shift your hand, or try to reach red with your middle finger?
  • whypick1whypick1 Headliner
    edited March 2008
    If I have to do GR, I'll shift my hand over to GRYB rather than try to do GRBO. For example, almost all the notes in the verse of "Next to You" use green, so my hand is firmly on GRYB until the chorus or solo show up. But if it's a matter of switching between green and red (good example, intro to "Cherub Rock"), my index finger will switch between the two and the rest of my fingers stay YBO. It may not be the most best way to do it, but I'm not going to argue with how far it's gotten me (last night I finally FC'd Cherub Rock).

    Note: the videos aren't mine, and are here only for illustrative purposes.
  • HeadHunter67HeadHunter67 Road Warrior
    edited March 2008
    Thank you - that is very helpful information for me as I've nearly finished the Medium guitar tour and soon I plan to start trying Hard (probably Quickplay with bass first).

    I've done a couple songs on Hard (my first was "We Got the Beat" in GH80s) but barely made it through. I think keeping my hand shifted over one fret might help, even on certain medium songs. It certainly makes RB chords a lot easier too.
  • GuitarShredderGuitarShredder Unsigned
    edited July 2009
    Alright, I won't front, I've had the game for a while, so I've got quite a lot of experience on my hands, now, as for my strumming, I started out as down strum only, then after a while, I started alt strum, and it actually made the game so much easier, now don't get me wrong, its gonna take some getting used to, but once you got it down, its a cake walk, and the only thing you should be worried about is the colors on the screen, and I use all my fingers, my home is the usual, GRYB, but on sequences where you have to hammer on orange somewhere in there, I tend to slide just my pinky over a bit, still hitting other notes, its easy that way otherwise, my hand is all over the fret board, hitting anything in my way, and.. I use my hand, using a pick is just too difficult. And unethical, especially for a rockband fender.

    My best tip to you, is get used to the alt. strumming, because its going to help so much, and as for the fast repeated note sequences, just take your time, get the rhythm of the guitar and strum to that rhythm, now I miss notes occasionally, simply because I'm off rhythm, but taking my time to catch back on is simply what it takes, don't take too long though, 'cause it will result in failing the song.

    The longest I've practiced one song had to have been The solo of Highway Star, by Deep Purple, most people can't do it, but I'm getting used to playing it, I'm an estimate of like 10% incomplete with the song.
  • PiemanXCPiemanXC Unsigned
    edited July 2009
    Personally, I don't see why not use four fingers. Anyone saying their pinky is weak probably hasn't used it much. I stayed in first position through all of Medium, a lot of Hard and Expert, and as a result I've gotten good at using all four fingers. Now I'm more of a second person, but I still use first position sometimes. As far as strumming, I downstrum anything under 7 nps, and I can do 8 or 9 downstrumming for short periods of time. Anything above that I alt strum.
  • SPOOF2804SPOOF2804 Unsigned
    edited April 2010
    Enter Sandman gave me some trouble on hard especilly the solo. I saw this article on modifing your guitar so you can finger tap the solos using the normal fret buttons. Turns out this was a very easy mod and it improved my solo abilities to the point where i just laugh at them hahahaha check it out it really helped me out.
  • nascarfan19nascarfan19 Headliner
    edited April 2010

    I prefer solo buttons for easier access to hard parts and solos
  • detlefdetlef Opening Act
    edited April 2010
    Four fingers is the way to go for me, but I use both "home positions" RYBO and GRYB, I normally start out with RYBO and then slide my hand up when a green note appears, I then stay in the "up" position until a orange comes up ( or a part of the song where I know the "down" position is helpful comes up ) at wich point I slide back down.

    Try to think in lanes instead of colours for this technique, it makes it much easier....
  • BlindFuryBlindFury Unsigned
    edited April 2010
    I also downstrummed my way from Hard to Expert, but then found Alt Strumming critical for the tougher songs. I googled it and found a couple of clips on YouTube that were helpful. By no means high quality video, but seeing someone do it made it click in my brain. People had slightly different techniques, so I found what worked best for me by trying them all. Then I played the easier songs on hard until it didn't feel strange anymore.
  • BallisticJunkfoodBallisticJunkfood Headliner
    edited April 2010
    Sadaiyappan;372147 said:
    How do you strum, alt or regular?
    Depends on the song, or even the part of the song. Alt strumming is essential to playing expert and if you don't learn to do it then you'll never get very far.
    Do you use only three fingers and slide your hand around or do you use all fingers?
    I generally do use my pinky because that's how I learned, but it really depends on what you're more comfortable doing.
    Do you use a pick or use your hand?
    I use my hand. I still cannot comprehend why anyone would even consider using a pick.
    Also what is the longest you have practiced one song?
    About 20 minutes. I don't spend too much time trying to grind one song because it's not really going to get me anywhere. I'd rather just have fun playing the songs I can play.
  • Stig_the_PigStig_the_Pig Opening Act
    edited April 2010
    I upstrum, but i can downstrum too, if i want
  • CATZrock3CATZrock3 Unsigned
    edited October 2010
    Learn to alt. strum, youre gonna have to. But most of the time, down strumming works just fine.
  • GameMaster439GameMaster439 Road Warrior
    edited October 2010
    You should be able to do both, alt-strum, and down strum, decently in order to play well. For finger movement, I would say use all four fingers, to me makes it simpler in the long run.
  • mayhem117mayhem117 Road Warrior
    edited October 2010
    If you are having trouble using your pinky I suggest playing easy with your bottom three fingers so that it isn't overwhelming and you get the hang of it. Once you feel comfortable with that move on to medium and slowly work your way up to the more difficult songs. Once you can complete the hardest song in the game on medium move up to the easiest hard songs until you make it to the harder ones, repeat for expert
  • Xyber DeathXyber Death Unsigned
    edited October 2010
    I don't think he needs your help anymore, it's been two years since he posted this thread. xD
  • knifes39knifes39 Rising Star
    edited October 2010
    listen to this guy hes the best guitarist i have seen
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