Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Are you ready to rock?

*Backing music stops abruptly*
*Dimmer lights are turned up a notch*
"Good evening, Davids living room! Are you ready to (ROCK/Be subjected to the sight of grown-ups with no shame and who should really know better playing with the largest console peripherals since Steel Batallion was released on the Xbox)*?

..and so it is that the ridiculously expensive but incredibly entertaining Rockband is released on the xbox 360. Comprising of "The band in a box" (large plastic drumkit controller and stand, full size Gibson replica guitar controller and USB microphone) and the game itself and coming in at a value slightly less than the gross national debt of Peru, it's one of the most entertaining multiplayer experiences since the Romans popularised the orgy.

If you've ever played Guitar Hero or any rhythm action game, you've aware of the basic premise. Play/sing along to songs of increasing difficulty with the aid of a fake plastic instrument to increase your score (or in the case of Rockband the number of fans) until you've beaten the game. This clinical description doesn't even begin to describe the sheer amount of fun had whilst playing it. It's important to leave shame at the door - you will look ridiculous playing this game and at some stage you will find yourself moving around in the manner of a drunken dad at a relatives wedding as you find yourself being sucked into the game itself and end up losing yourself in the moment.

Guitar Hero allowed the multiplayer aspect by letting two people play the guitar to a song at once. Rockband takes this further by allowing you and your friends to play as a full four piece band (with the person who draws the short straw getting singing duties) and by letting you customise your on screen avatar to your hearts content to a thing that vaguely looks like you. Albeit a cooler thinner version of you.

Expensive? Yes. Stupidly so. Somebody saw fit to convert the complete set from dollars to pounds simply by changing the currency symbol. Amazon is full of one-star reviews for this game from people (justifiably) complaining about the price. This proves that primarily I'm an idiot with more money than sense, but we're certainly getting our monies worth out of it so far and I can see this getting dragged out at countless parties to come - It's the sort of thing that everybody will want to play, especially where alcohol is involved.

One day I'll beat the stupidly high rift in difficulty levels they've placed between 'Medium' (at which everything is too easy) and 'Hard' (which I can't even complete the first set of songs at). Mind you, I am old and my reactions are terrible - so ultimately this is more a criticism of my elderly hide than anything else.

* Delete as applicable


  1. Wouldn't a thinner you do something warped to the space-time continuum?

  2. True, but a cooler me is certainly very achievable. Way too easily achievable in fact.


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