The best thing about games like Rock Band 4 is the way that they make you feel like a real rock legend. Your rocker may be virtual but it’s still tremendous fun going through the motions, as you grow from a small town band with just your closest friends as fans to sold out arenas where everybody knows your name. But that method is old hat; we’ve played through setlists before, building a reputation, and by now it’s a little bit boring.
That’s why it’s great news that Rock Band 4‘s campaign will play like a fully fledged RPG. We’ll get to make our own decisions about the way the band progresses as well as the ways that the band earns money and the way that we appeal to fans. We’ll also be able to customise our rockers to our hearts’ content. Find out more after the break.
Rock Band 4 RPG
In a ongoing series of preview with IGN, developer Harmonix explained that we’ll still be starting out in our hometown, but in Rock Band 4, it will be up to us how we become so much bigger than those backyard gigs. The game’s designer Alli Thresher explained:
“Making decisions together, charting a path through your careers, building your story as a musician, and figuring out who you are.
You can take corporate gigs and make a lot of money as a band, you can take a path to pursue your artistic integrity, and along the way, as you make these choices, the game kind of responds to you. So, you might take a gig where you decide you are the spokesperson for off-brand salted meats and start your every gig by warming up the crowd telling them how much you like salted meats. And the crowd is not into it and booing and stuff, and you have to play really, really well to get them over it.
You could take a path where maybe you decide you just want to, like, couch surf around the country, use social media to meet people and sleep on their floors. So, you’re not really making a lot of money, but maybe meeting enthusiastic crowds – maybe too enthusiastic – maybe meeting super fans and trying to navigate dealing with them.”
You can also get more fans via a feature called ‘Stage Presence’. Rock Band 4‘s creative lead Greg LoPiccolo explained that when players in a band do performance-oriented things such as band members activating their Overdrive at the same time or when drummers do creative drum fills, they will get more fans.
Should you go after the green, you’ll be able to spend more money on better equipment and more customisation options for your band but if you go after more fans then you could unlock special gigs and setlists. It’ll be interesting to see how Rock Band 4 will let us balance the two (being a band loved by both corporate and community), so hopefully Harmonix will release some footage of that in action soon.
Rock Band 4 will be released later this year on PS4 and Xbox One.