The Beatles: Rock Band

So you take two great things, The Beatles and Rock Band, and you put them together. You should get something great right? I mean where can you go wrong? Actually there’s probably a whole bunch of ways you could go wrong but thankfully we don’t have to contemplate them because this game doesn’t go wrong. The Beatles: Rock Band is the perfect union of two totally awesome things, it’s everything I expected and more. What I expected was Rock Band with Beatles songs, and this definitely has that, but there’s much more, it’s an experience. I sat down with this game on Saturday and played through the whole thing from start to finish, and even though it only took a couple hours (you only have to play each song once) the way that they arrange the songs in order with detailed recreation of their performances and recording sessions I felt like I too had been a part of their decade long career. They clearly worked very hard on the graphics for game and one thing they’ve done is made the note run a little transparent so even when you’re playing and focusing on your part you can still see what’s going on in the song’s cinematic which are either recreations of their live performances or imaginative “dreamscapes”. There is much more detail in the character animations so it really looks like they’re all playing their instruments. But these really are all just things that fill out around the edges, the essence of this game is the music, and the question on everybody’s minds is “Are The Beatles’ songs any good to play in Rock Band?” The answer: an emphatic yes. Now, as a (Rock Band) drummer, I have to admit that the drum parts for this game are not very challenging as far as not failing goes. The only song I failed the entire time was “Money Can’t Buy Me Love”. The rest generally have easy to keep beats but what I love are the fills. When I first heard that for this game they were going to be taking out the option to make up your own fills at certain points I was a little annoyed, but I since have found out why: because Ringo’s are so perfect anything you tried to play would just make a mess of things. I can’t really speak to any of the other instruments as I almost never touch them but a friend of mine told me he thought they’d much improved the way the game reads vocals (which probably means that it just doesn’t), and guitar seems to be pretty much the same as it’s always been. There aren’t many extremely hard to play finger blistering songs (except Helter Skelter of course) but I’ve never really enjoyed those as much as playing along to songs that I like regardless of the difficulty, and these are all songs that I like. I can’t really think of much they could have improved on except maybe some of the song choices (no Hey Jude!?) but that of course is being addressed by DLC.

Final Score: 99.5/100, with the .5 being taken off for the songs that weren’t in the game but should have been.

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