Learning to play the guitar on your own can be an adventure.

With your trusty axe slung across your back, you emerge from your village and head into the forests. Your epic journey has only begun when you’re suddenly ambushed by a bunch of scary monsters. Still weary and with your hands blistered from training, you fall prey to your nemesis – the dreaded barre chord.

What do you do then? You start again. Monster Chords is a great guide for budding guitar heroes. Although it’s a solo adventure, you’ll soon learn to prevail against the challenges (both figurative and literal) through the power of music.

Monster Chords starts off with a tuner mini-game to get your six strings ready for strumming. It may seem kind of simple, but the feature is really useful. Sometimes tuning can prove difficult even for experienced players.

Once you’re in tune it’s time for action. Each level contains a chord chart. To play along, simply strum the written chord when prompted by the green light. The app also comes with built-in videos that walk you through some of the most common chords and techniques.

By the first few levels, you might be pleasantly surprised to find yourself plucking a beautiful tune using just one string. But don’t get too confident there, maestro. Pretty soon you’ll be playing chords that seem like they require you to grow a few extra fingers.

Just as you get a handle on things, the game’s little monsters start popping out. Don’t worry, they’re more beat then bite. These guys are just looking to dance. Play out of rhythm, however, and they’ll start taking the party elsewhere. If you stay in time and keep strumming, you’ll not only play to a happy crowd, but also be rewarded to a display of fireworks. There’s so much going on, you almost don’t even notice that you’re practicing the boring fundamentals.

Of course, you’ll only get out of the app what you willing to put into it. (That barre chord is going to take some practice.) Strum up enough beginner confidence, and Monster Chords provides a new opportunity to expand your skills. With Composer Mode, you can design a custom level by creating your own song. Beware, it’s harder than it sounds.

Just remember to be brave, and this monster-meets-musio adventure will have you picking and grinning in no time.

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