Laying out their plans for Rock Band 4 this year at PAX East, Harmonix revealed that a big expansion pack is coming this fall, with synchronous online multiplayer following in holiday 2016.
As Harmonix explained, online multiplayer will be like Quickplay, but modified to offer a “fair and streamlined experience” for those looking to play Rock Band 4 together online:
We’ll be implementing enhancements on the back end (think of it like our secret sauce) that’ll address issues for folks who don’t have the exact same DLC libraries and the like. Back in the Rock Band 3 era, it was sometimes (often) a nightmare to have one person pick every single song, or have that one jerk troll the band when trying to compromise on the next track to play. This secret sauce will help avoid some of the more difficult areas from the previous generation.
Online multiplayer will be available to expansion pack owners “shortly after” the expansion pack launches in fall 2016.
While online multiplayer is a big feature for Rock Band 4, Harmonix says that it “isn’t even the major piece (or rather, pieces) we have planned” for the fall update. “We’ve got brand new features heading to Rock Band 4 that have never been in any previous Rock Band title, ever,” they add.
Before the expansion pack and online multiplayer later this year, Harmonix will add the Battleborn characters and double kick support in May, with Practice Mode coming in June.
You can expect more details on the future of Rock Band 4 at E3 2016 in June.