The heyday of peripheral-focused music games has come and gone, but their spirit lives on in Rock Band Blitz, Harmonix’s new game for Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network. You won’t need anything more that a standard controller to play the game, and you won’t have to wait long, either. Rock Band Blitz brings the hits on August 28, 2012, and it’ll only set you back $14.99/1200 MS Points — a killer deal since the game’s 20+ new tracks are also playable in Rock Band 3.
Needless to say, Rock Band Blitz is a markedly different game from the previous Rock Band titles. Long-time music game aficionados may remember Harmonix’s PlayStation 2 efforts, Amplitude and Frequency, with which Blitz shares some design features. More recent music game converts could be forgiven for thinking that Blitz looks a little bit like the DJ Hero games, or for that matter, like the Rock Band iOS app.
In any case, Rock Band Blitz tasks players with managing and mastering every facet of a given song (guitar, bass, vocals and drums) by switching between tracks on the game’s “note highway” which, yes, really is framed like a road this time out. To keep things from getting completely out of hand (or, perhaps, to encourage just that?), the designers at Harmonix have loaded Blitz with some over-the-top power-ups. A previous Rock Band Blitz trailer highlighted the Bandmate and Pinball power-ups, while the trailer at the top of the page focuses on another set: the Bottle Rocket, Blast Note, Flame Note and Synchrony power-ups. If you haven’t yet, check it out now.
We’re coming up on two long years since the release of Rock Band 3, which remains the greatest plastic instrument game ever made (read our review). Harmonix’s decision not to charge ahead with Rock Band 4 was sensible — really, what could they add to the game that wasn’t already in Rock Band 3? — but it robbed fans of the opportunity to score a disc containing a fat batch of new tracks to tear through. Fortunately, weekly Rock Band DLC continues to take up the slack, and Rock Band Blitz will only make things better. We still don’t know exactly how many songs will ship with the game, but four more tracks have just been announced.
- Avenged Sevenfold — “So Far Away”
- Fun. ft. Janelle MonÃ¡e — “We Are Young”
- Kool & The Gang — “Jungle Boogie”
- My Chemical Romance — “Sing”
Just to get you all the way up to speed on Rock Band Blitz’s lineup, here are all the other tracks that have been revealed.
- The All-American Rejects — “Kids in the Street”
- Barenaked Ladies — “One Week”
- Blink-182 — “Always”
- Collective Soul — “Shine”
- Elton John — “I’m Still Standing”
- Fall Out Boy — “A Little Less Sixteen Candles, A Little More ‘Touch Me’”
- Foster the People — “Pumped Up Kicks”
- Great White — “Once Bitten Twice Shy”
- Iron Maiden — “The Wicker Man”
- Living Colour — “Cult of Personality”
- P!nk — “Raise Your Glass”
- Quiet Riot — “Metal Health (Bang Your Head)”
- Shinedown — “Diamond Eyes (Boom-Lay Boom-Lay Boom)”
- Rick Springfield — “Jessie’s Girl”
- Tears for Fears — “Shout”
Again, all the Rock Band Blitz tracks will be fully playable in Rock Band 3, and most Rock Band DLC will work with Blitz, including exports of Rock Band and Rock Band 2. Sadly, that won’t be the case with Rock Band 3′s on-disc tracks, which aren’t playable in Blitz. Should that change, trust that we’ll let you know.
Ranters, what do you think of this reinvention of Harmonix’s signature game? Are you looking forward to putting Rock Band Blitz through its paces, or would you rather play another full-fledged Rock Band? Let us know in the comments below.
Rock Band Blitz releases August 28, 2012, for Xbox 360 and PS3.
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