Rock Band 3 E3 Impressions

June 19, 2010 Written by Josh Fernandes

Rock Band is back, and this time the guitars are real. Rock Band 3 is looking to reinvent the music game genre again by allowing players to use real guitars and keyboards to play the game. Oh, did I forget to mention that the keyboard will be making its début as a new instrument in Rock Band 3. I got some hands on with Rock Band 3 to see if it still had that rock star vibe.

First off, there will be a lot of familiarity with Rock Band 3. The look of the game screen is exactly the same. The singer runner is at the top with the pointers. There are now four lanes for guitar, base, keyboard, and drums, but they have the same color scheme. At the time that Rock Band 3 releases, there will be a total of 2,000 songs on the Rock Band Network. Your be able to play all those songs on Rock Band 3. Since that is a lot of songs to scroll through, Harmonix has added in a new song screening system. You can view songs by genre, length, by different Rock Band Games, and many more.

Now, on to the new stuff. The keyboard that will be sold for Rock Band 3  will cover two octaves of a keyboard. About 3 or 4 keys share the same color. i.e. 4 green keys, 3 yellow keys, etc. This is for easy, medium, and hard difficulties. All you have to do is push any key that matches the color, so you don’t have to worry about hitting specific keys. On expert difficulty, the specific keys will show up for just one half of the piano. Arrows will pop up on screen when you are suppose to move down or up an octave. For pro mode, every single key will appear on the track. It looked very fun, but even more difficult. Pro mode for guitar was equally as impressive. For pro mode, the colors now represent the different strings you are suppose to finger. A number appears above the colored gem to let you know which fret to finger. I got an up close view of someone demonstrating pro mode on guitar, and it worked perfectly. The number of singers has also increased to three people. So now you can finally have backup singers.

There will also be a new career mode for parties. It was described as “Rock Band meets Mario Party.” What you basically do is tour one part of a country instead of travelling all over the world. You will be assigned different challenges and you will be earning new tour buses, fans, etc. There won’t be any limits on the songs you can play, so you don’t have to grind through the original career mode to unlock the songs. Although, you can still grind through the career mode like in Rock Band 2.

For anyone who might have been getting a little bored of the whole music game genre, Rock Band 3 will probably change your mind. With 83 new songs by 83 different bands, I can’t wait to get my hands on Rock Band 3 when it comes out this holiday.