DLC came back for the first time in 21 months. Then it came back again. Then a survey was sent out to fans. Finally, a set of collectible PAX pins held out for one mystery game. The ever so subtle teases paid off today, as Harmonix has officially announced Rock Band 4. The game will be coming to PS4 and Xbox One later this year. Fans at PAX East can pre-order an exclusive Penny Arcade-themed guitar at the #4224 Harmonix booth, as well. A behind-the-scenes video has been uploaded to Youtube, with Harmonix employees sharing what’s next for the series.
I am very happy to report that some of the big requests from Rock Band fans will be coming to Rock Band 4. DLC accumulated throughout the three previous video game entries will transfer over to the new console within the same company (i.e: PS3 songs —> PS4 version of Rock Band 4). New Mad Catz hardware will be coming out, while Harmonix will be closely working with Mad Catz, Sony and Microsoft to allow current legacy hardware work on new consoles. Finally, the new games will focus purely on the core Rock Band experience with drums, bass, guitar and vocals. Only Pro Drums remain.
While that last point sounds like a negative, I feel that as Harmonix goes closer and closer towards creative independence, prioritization is of utmost importance. Creating note-for-note tracks for guitar, bass and keyboards is outlandishly demanding in comparison to transfixing towards a few inputs per plastic instrument. With promises of new gameplay features coming to Rock Band 4, tightening the premise might yield excellent results, especially if those surveyed with those pro instruments are in the extreme minority.
As more and more Rock Band 4 features are announced to the public, we’ll be there every step along the way. It’s time to get the band back together!
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