Friday, June 11, 2010

REVIEW: Green Day Rock Band

So, on Tuesday, I got Green Day Rock Band.

The game is Rock Band, but with Green Day. Just Green Day. That's it really.

FINAL VERDICT: Ask yourself these questions-
1. Do I like Green Day?
2. Do I like Rock Band?
If yes, get it. Nothing else I can really say.

Oh, you wanted MORE? Then all I can give are my impressions and experiences, and that's not a review. EVERYONE'S reviewed this damn thing, so all I can do is tell you folks a little story:

All right, so while my little brother was at work, I called a friend over and we jammed a little bit. Since my Dad would probably want to tear through 21st Century Breakdown, we decided to go through the Dookie campaign. I was an idiot and decided to go on drums, AND try to sing, while my friend played the guitar. It was fun, and whoever thinks that a punk band can't have difficult music is out of their mind. Either way, it was a lot of fun.

The one thing that stuck out at me was how appropriate all the motions seemed. Linear motion capture really does make a difference, and I think that's one of the few areas where the Guitar Hero franchise has an edge over Rock Band.

Sure, you can have the different camera cuts and all that, but it felt more "professional". There is the argument that Rock Band isn't supposed to be about that, but more along the lines of you jamming out with some friends, and they're not going to be doing all the fucking around the GH avatars do. Still, after playing for a while, the "standard" cuts and motions look samey, and sometimes don't fit the scene. Anyway, back to my rambling:

I was born in '88 (raised by the bastards of 1951), and never really got into that album (Dookie). I sort of got into Green Day during that odd period between American Idiot and 21st Century Breakdown. I just started to pick up the guitar, and "Holiday" was he first song I learned. Then one day my dad heard "Brain Stew" on the radio and he though "I like these guys!", so the next day he got Bullet In A Bible and International Superhits!, and watching that DVD, it's a real treat to see these guys live. "Energy" is the defining word.

And they tried to bring that energy to "Green Day: Rock Band". For the most part it succeeded. There's still the limitations of it being a video game, so the animation appears stilted at some points, and of course the, "fingers go THROUGH the strings" trick.

As far as complaints go, they're not that big, but it's like the Uncanny Valley: so close to being perfect (for me at least), that all these errors seem gigantic.
1. Nothing pre-Dookie. As I have mentioned before, there's a handful of good songs they could have used, and helped beefed up the Warehouse venue. But none of those stems are digital, so that gets a pass.
2. Not a lot of venues. The songs for the "other" albums (Insomniac to Warning) could have easily made another stage. It felt kind of anemic after The Beatles: Rock Band
3. Which leads me to my next point. It could have been cool to see the 21st Century Breakdown and American Idiot albums played out like a story, with GD playing in the background. For a band known for its music videos as well as the live shows, this was a disappointment.

Either way, I had fun with it, and intend to play it again when my brother goes to work later today.


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