updated 04:15 pm EDT, Fri July 27, 2007
Mattel I Can Play Guitar
Mattel and its partners today dropped more details about the upcoming I Can Play Guitar, its new combination learning tool and toy for kids and even adult newcomers to music. Similar in spirit to Guitar Hero, the instrument avoids conventional strings and relies on a video game with on-screen cues. Instead of buttons, however, players put their fingers over specific positions on the fretboard to trigger notes. The system is much closer to actual guitars while still color-coding the positions to help those intimidated by the real-world instrument. Songs are loaded through cartridges plugged into the guitar itself.
Training using the guitar is said to be effective for anyone six years of age or older and gets underway with the bundled cartridge, which stores six songs to get junior musicians started. Mattel ships the core I Can Play guitar in August for $100 and will offer extra song collections for $15 each.