We’ve talked about Rock Band and other rhythm games a lot here on OSV. With games in this genre being pretty similar across the board, it’s kind of hard to string out an in-depth review each time a new game is released, but I thought it would be worth hitting the highlights on Green Day: Rock Band, Harmonix’s second band-specific Rock Band experience.
You already know if you like rhythm games. Not a whole lot has changed recently, so the deciding factor as to whether or not you’re interested in one of these titles is generally going to be the music selection. With this game focusing solely on Green Day, you’ll probably like it if you like the band, and you’ll probably want to pass if you don’t.
I guess that’s a simple enough review, but let’s jump into some of the specifics after the jump.
I liked Green Day a lot when I was in elementary school. Dookie had just been released, and the band was all the rage on MTV back then. I can’t say I’ve kept up with the group, and I haven’t felt too strongly either way about their singles that have hit the radio since the 90s, but I am impressed by the lasting appeal of the group. I was more surprised that they got their own Rock Band game before acts like Metallica or even Megadeth, but hey, I can appreciate the fact that there are a lot of Green Day fans out there.
I suppose the most obvious comparison with Green Day: Rock Band is to The Beatles: Rock Band, which we absolutely loved. Not much has changed here aside from content. There are still vocal harmonies, which are actually more varied than those found in The Beatles: Rock Band, and instead of the psychedelic visual experience that The Beatles: Rock Band provided, you’ll instead get a grungy punk style that’s more in line with Green Day. There’s still a no-fail mode, which is immensely helpful in groups where you’re bound to get that one friend who’s terrible at rhythm games but still wants to participate, and it’s a huge bonus that all the songs are unlocked right out of the box. The tracks are exportable for $10, which you’ll likely want to do to get a more varied track list within a group setting, and there’s a nice blend of both old and new tracks available.
A few things about the songs. These are all radio edits, so you’re going to be missing out on a lot of the cursing that the band usually incorporates into their performances. Kind of a shame, but I guess I understand the reason for it: they are appealing to kids, after all. It’s also interesting that a lot of the note charts have a distinctly different feel from other Rock Band titles. This was the same with The Beatles: Rock Band. I wonder if this is a consequence of different people preparing the charts, or rather the team trying to create a unique “feel” for the different games. In any case, I noticed it with the guitar sections in particular, and appreciated it. I also dig how Harmonix handled the band animations this time around. It really feels like you’re watching (or performing) a live show, as the band members on stage interact with the crowd, the “camera,” and the crowd responds in turn, which was cool to see.
The bottom line is that if you like Rock Band and you like Green Day, you’ll probably like Green Day: Rock Band. If you don’t like one of these, then you probably won’t. It’s not a big secret. Most people who are interested in Rock Band are probably looking forward to Rock Band 3 at this point (I personally can’t wait to get my hands on the keyboard), but if you love Green Day and want pick this one up to hold you over in the meantime, it’s probably a good pick.
Are you surprised that Green Day got its own Rock Band title? Have any thoughts about this game or the franchise in particular?Tags: Green Day, Green Day: Rock Band, Harmonix, Reviews, Rhythm, Rock Band