CGRundertow ROCK BAND BLITZ for Xbox 360 Video Game Review

Uploaded by CGRundertow on 30.08.2012

Fans of FreQuency and Amplitude had it lucky. Those games were self-contained experiences,
though they made players crave more. Every other flavor of music gaming leaves a layer
of detritus, whether it’s peripherals like DDR pads or Beatmania turntables, or in the
case of Rock Band and Singstar and other DLC-focused experiences, a hard drive full of music you’re
probably not playing right now. So what if there was a way to take all that stuff you’ve
already bought, and enjoy it without the need for plastic instruments which may or may not
still work. What if you could control the entire song, without having to rely on your
friends who may or may not have had too much to drink? What if it felt like Amplitude,
but even more hardcore?
Yes, I realize there’s only two buttons to worry about. But as any seasoned FreQ will
tell you, the hardest part of any song is when you’ve got a bajillion of the same
note in a row. That’s why The Rock Show was so challenging on Amplitude. But you don’t
have to worry about failure in Rock Band Blitz, as there’s no actual way to “lose.”
You just don’t get the high score, don’t get the cred, don’t get the coins and get
a pitiful position on the leaderboard. Fans of the earlier games, where you had a life
bar, may find themselves playing a little too conservatively as a result. But there’s
no penalty for switching tracks mid-phrase, and there’s no penalty for missing notes,
except that you don’t get credit for ‘em. As you hit notes on a given track, its multiplier
begins to increase across that gauge on the left; as you cross a checkpoint, the gauge
itself shifts such that the lowest multiplier across all your tracks becomes the lowest
possible on the gauge, thus giving you more headroom to build your multipliers further
and further. Without the possibility of failure, there has to be some semblance of challenge,
so to that end Rock Band Blitz adopts the mantra of SCORE MEANS EVERYTHING. You can
see your own high scores, the highest scores ever for that song, all the high scores of
your friends, and - by connecting your copy to Facebook - can publish your own high scores,
because you might as well gloat. There are power-ups to unlock with the cred you earn,
so as to score you more points. And, occasionally, play Pinball (or, rather, Arkanoid) right
there on the track.
Fifteen bucks for a breath of fresh air for your Rock Band collection isn’t bad on its
own, considering that you get 25 tracks that also cross-export into Rock Band 3. That’s
$.60 a song, significantly better than the average price. It’s kinda obvious that Harmonix
were just looking for a way to get people interested again in buying their DLC songs,
because - let’s face it - they make money hand over fist on ‘em. And, frankly, they
did a good job of it. I couldn’t stop playing. Amplitude FreQs get what they want, Rock Band
fans get what they want, and there’s no one here to drink all of my beer or spill
mayonnaise on the wall. Perfect.