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Lego Rock Band Preview

Lego Rock Band Preview

Music games have been a huge success in 2009 with a plethora of titles targeting all age groups. LEGO Rock Band is due to be released shortly with the concept of getting younger players addicted to the button mashing, music playing experience. With the moniker of “Build a band and rock the universe” this is a game that many parents will be comfortable leaving their young kids alone with in the safety of their bedrooms.

With the release schedule for November we recently had some time to see just how the game is shaping up. Immediately we can see the Rock Band menus have been given the full LEGO treatment – you know it is still ROCK BAND, but the stylized makeover is very recognizable. Veteran Rock Band gamers will find it amusing to see the famous opening car ride intro also getting recreated to fit into the LEGO theme. There are no characters from other LEGO games involved, so if you expected to see Batman or Indiana Jones playing guitar along to QUEEN then you will be disappointed.

The mechanic works along the same lines, you press the corresponding buttons to match the icons on screen just as it hits a specific position on the board. To make the experience easier for a younger audience there is now an ‘auto kick drum’ option to take away the difficulty of the complicated reflex action (there is also the possibility that younger kids might not be able to even reach the pedal!). When the players get more experienced they can turn it back on to play it in full ‘adult’ mode.

Keeping in line with traditional ROCK BAND options, you can export most of the LEGO Rock Band tracks to the hard drive and hopefully if Harmonix can get the full license list from record companies, then every track will be selectable. The export fee for this has yet to be confirmed but we would expect it to be slightly higher than the $5 one off fee in the previous iterations. This is only available in Xbox and Playstation versions. MTV have been involved to create a filter to ensure that only the ‘safe’ tracks from your library can be imported and when you visit the store in game you only see the child friendly tracks. With such a focus on the younger audience it makes sense to build in safe guards such as this.

To aid very young children in playing the game and to work on actually enhancing their ‘timing’ abilities, there is a super easy mode which means it makes no difference as to which coloured button you press – as long as the timing is right. Although to make sure that older family members aren’t alienated from the experience there is still an expert mode which is very difficult.

To ease the frustration that younger kids would feel from failing constantly, Harmonix have a ‘stud mode’ incorporated into the game which means that a player cannot lose. If you play badly you lose studs and if you play well you earn them, thats it. There are even specific tracks with short versions to keep the younger attention deficit audience interested – the effect of this is basically that some tracks will have longer sections shortened to keep the pace higher.

LEGO Rock Band works with all Rock Band and Guitar Hero controllers so you only need to purchase the retail disc and slot it in with your already purchased instruments.

Here is a full track list.

All American Rejects – "Swing, Swing"
The Automatic – "Monster"
Blink-182 – "Aliens Exist"
Blur – "Song 2"
Bon Jovi – "You Give Love a Bad Name"
Boys like Girls – "Thunder"
Bryan Adams – "Summer of 69"
The Coral – "Dreaming of You"
Carl Douglas – "Kung Fu Fighting"
Counting Crows – "Accidentally in Love"
David Bowie – "Let’s Dance"
Elton John – "Crocodile Rock"
Europe – "The Final Countdown"
Everlife – "Real Wild Child"
Foo Fighters – "Breakout"
Good Charlotte – "Girls & Boys"
The Hives – "Tick Tick Boom!"
Iggy Pop – "The Passenger"
Incubus – "Dig"
Jackson 5 – "I Want You Back"
Jimi Hendrix – "Fire"
Kaiser Chiefs – "Ruby"
Katrina & The Waves – "Walking on Sunshine"
KoRn – "Word Up!"
The Kooks – "Naïve"
Lostprophets – "Rooftops"
KT Tunstall – "Suddenly I See"
PINK – "So What"
The Police – "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic"
The Primitives – "Crash"
Queen – "We Are The Champions"
Queen – "We Will Rock You"
Rascal Flatts – "Life is a Highway"
Ray Parker Jr. – "Ghostbusters"
Spin Doctors – "Two Princes"
Razorlight – "Stumble and Fall"
Spinal Tap – "Short & Sweet"
Steve Harly – "Make Me Smile"
Sum 41 – "In Too Deep"
Supergrass – "Grace"
Tom Petty – "Free Fallin"
T-Rex – "Ride a White Swan"
We the Kings – "Check Yes Juliet"
Vampire Weekend – "A-Punk"
The Zutons – "Valerie"

We will have a full review of the game on GamingHeaven when it hits release next month.

About Author

Stuart Davidson

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