Rockband 4 Preview | Gaming News | Infinite Grenade Launcher Podcast | Level 101
Welcome to The Infinite Grenade launcher Podcast! In their inaugural episode Matt and Jason wrap up E3 2015 with a hands-on Rockband 4 preview experience, Destiny debates, Final Fantasy music and more!
About Rock Band 4
Rock Band 4 is a 2015 music video game developed by Harmonix. Rock Band 4 allows players to simulate the playing of music across many different decades and genres using instrument controllers that mimic playing lead and bass guitar, drums, and vocals. As the fourth main installment in the Rock Band franchise, it was released for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on October 6, 2015. Mad Catz, who also developed new instrument controllers for the game, marketed and distributed the title worldwide at launch; Performance Designed Products (PDP) will take over manufacturing and distribution by the end of 2016. The game shipped with more than sixty licensed songs; additional songs are available as downloadable content, which includes a library of over 2000 existing songs from prior installments.
Rock Band 4 represented Harmonix’s return to the franchise after an almost three-year hiatus, following the diminishing popularity of the rhythm game market that started in 2009. Announced on March 5, 2015, Rock Band 4 refocuses on the core gameplay of the franchise, reducing the emphasis on musical instruction that was employed by its predecessor, Rock Band 3, while emphasizing the game’s social interactions, as well as new features enabling players to incorporate improvisation into their performance—such as “freestyle solos” on guitar, and “freeform melodies” on multi-part vocals.
Rock Band 4 offers backward compatibility with content and hardware from previous versions of Rock Band within the same console family; wireless guitar and drum controllers from PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of Rock Band can be used on the PS4 and Xbox One versions (with PS4 using an existing USB dongle, and Xbox One requiring a newly produced USB dongle), and DLC songs purchased on prior installments on PS3 and Xbox 360 can be re-downloaded at no extra charge on PS4 and Xbox One in a ported form that supports the game’s features. Harmonix plans to release free and paid DLC that will add new features and content to the game over time, in lieu of releasing yearly installments; this includes the addition of support for synchronous online play added on January 25, 2017.
Critical reception to Rock Band 4 on-launch was positive, with reviews praising the game for not significantly deviating from the gameplay mechanics of prior installments, as well as the higher degree of creative freedom offered by the Freestyle Solos feature, and its backward compatibility with previously-released content for the Rock Band franchise. The soundtrack of Rock Band 4 was characterized as being weaker than that of previous installments due to its use of lesser-known songs and artists, while the game, at release, was also panned for lacking features present in previous versions, such as online multiplayer and practice modes.