Quick! Activate Star Power!

There have been a lot of stellar video games released over the years, but none of them cause quite as much division among people as the Guitar Hero series. If you’re a fan of the game, it’s not enough to just enjoy playing it occasionally. You have to be devoted. Like playing an actual instrument, Guitar Hero requires intense discipline and rigid commitment to master. And that’s where the game’s detractors step in: Some folks just can’t fathom spending so much time learning to play a plastic, Fisher Price-like guitar when you could be learning the real thing. But the critics are missing the point. By their logic, any game that simulates combat should be eschewed in favor of the real thing, and people should become artists instead of watching movies about them. Crazy talk.

Regardless, people don’t play games or watch movies so they can become like the characters in them. They do it so they can have fun. And you can have a helluva lot of fun playing Guitar Hero too -- just head down to Java D’Lites (2528 N. University Dr., Coral Springs) on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. and join the Guitar Hero competition. The tourney costs $5 to enter, which puts you in the running to win (gasp!) a real guitar courtesy of Sam Ash. Players of all skill levels are welcome in the tournament, or to just hang out and jam for fun. And if Guitar Hero still isn’t your thing, the cats running the show also plan on hosting tourneys for Madden NFL 2008. Call 954-340-BEAN for more info.
Tuesdays, 9 p.m., 2008

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John Linn