Saturday, June 19, 2010

Harmonix. Creators of Awesome - E3 2010

Eruditechick and I had the pleasure of not only playing various Rock Band games for a good hour and a half over the course of our two days at E3, but also getting to learn about some amazing new features Rock Band 3 will hold when it comes out this holiday season. Here are some of those awesome additions to the Rock Band franchise that will have you peeing yourself. I said pee.

- You can drop out or in at any time, without affecting the score or gameplay. If you often have Rock Band parties, as I do, you know annoying it is when the drummer takes 5 and no one else wants to drum. "B. B. B. B. B. B. A. A. A. A. scroll scroll scroll. A. A. A." will now become "B. A." Only someone as dorky as myself & my fellow Rock Band geeks would understand how awesome this is. So don't feel bad if you don't get it. It probably means you're cooler than I am.

-You can also change your difficulty at any time, mid-song, without receiving punishment. WIN.

- Library Filtering. You can now sort which parts of your library to access through a filtering system. Categories include decade, length of song, Rock Band game, number of vocal parts, etc. So if your third vocalist needs to run to the store, but said "don't play any songs from the 60s or 70s without me", you can say two vocal parts, and songs only from 80s, 90s and 00s and BOOM. Or if you wanna have 70s rock night, or wanna end your party with a super epic long song, but don't know off hand which are which - filtering is your new best friend.

- Can play all the songs ever. Of which there are like, 2000. That's a lot. One question that didn't get answered - can you use 3 part harmony, pro guitar and keyboard for the non Rock Band 3 songs. Because if so? .... Nothing I could say could possibly capture the excitement.

- Song Rating. You can now rate songs after you play them. The better the rating, the more likely the song is to come up during random play/set lists. The lower the rating, the less likely. The system will also recommend songs for you based on the ones you've rated the best. Do I need this? No. But is it awesome? Yes.

- Saving Set Lists. Yup. You can now save your set lists and share them with friends, challenging them to beat your score. Interactive mix tape!

- Party Options. First - the Party Shuffle. Filter it if you want. Put it on party shuffle. Random songs, customized to throw you songs you like or would like. Can skip any song that comes up if you don't like it without disrupting the flow of the game. Second - the "Road Trip" option, which allows you to create a two hour set list that acts a tour, and when you complete it, you actually win the game. It allows you and your friends to have a more concrete goal when you are having a Rock Band party. "Hey guys, Road Trip time!" Two hours later - "YAY, we won! Let's get drunk! Oops I'm already drunk. YAY!" See?

- Keyboard. Two octaves, 25 keys. Use your midi keyboard or use THIS ONE as your midi keyboard. Play keys mode where you only use five keys, much like the guitar or base or use pro keys mode and PLAY THE FUCKIN PIANO. Will this help me how to learn piano?!?!! According to the cute and ostensibly too-young-to-be-that-smart Harmonix dude leading the Rock Band 3 demonstration, after practicing Bohemian Rhapsody endlessly on pro keys, he sat down at a piano and was stunned to discover he could actually play most of it off the top of his head. AHHHH WANT.

- Pro Guitar. It's awesome. It's more than awesome. It fills my heart with joy. It's a real guitar. That you can play. And the game gives you ACTUAL TABLATURE on the screen. I already play the real guitar and I love the idea that now I can practice and learn new songs WHILE playing with my xbox and getting acheivements and knowing concretely how much I'm improving and at what rate. So. Controller. Real guitar. And ALSO you can use this guitar as a midi guitar. It's like three birds one stone, people. THREE god damn birds. ONE effing stone.

It'll probably cost me 500 bucks for all this, but whatever, I'm doing it. It's so much awesomeness rolled into one product, there's no way it can be too expensive for what you'd be getting out of it. Oh dear god, the WANT is strong in this one. This one being me.