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Fred Jams to Rock Band 2

Published December 2, 2008 in Console Games
By Fred Topel | Image property of respective holders
Rock Band Rock Band

I finally waited for my PS3 Rock Band 2 and finally caught up on enough actual work to test it out over Thanksgiving. Obviously, the basic play was already a well oiled machine, though I must admit I’m even getting the hang of this guitar the second time around. (I think it’s focusing on the top of the screen rather than the bottom.) The new organization is phenomenal, but it’s the challenges and Battle of the Bands that really expand the game.

Rock Band II

They’ve added tweaks that make the game more than just acing songs. You could just do that if you like it old school, but special sets within each tour can give you more detailed objectives. Even if it’s just five stars or bust, if gives you something more to do. Random set lists can be scary.

They incorporate your downloaded songs into the gig. That makes your downloads more than just a novelty. They’re part of the game. It gives you options if you don’t care for a particular set list, and it forces you to pay attention to songs you’ve maybe neglected. It can really mess you up when it randomly selects a really hard song but it’s exciting. It certainly warmed my heart when Stephen and the Colberts came on.

Then you have separate challenges and Battle of the Bands. In Battle sets, you can carry over reserve overdrive into the next song. That’s cool and strategic. These also incorporate downloaded songs. Of course, if you want to play certain Battles, you’ll have to buy all the tracks to play them! The challenges give you interesting set lists, also incorporating downloads, as an alternative to the tour gigs.

So perhaps the theme here is the incorporation of downloaded songs into actual game play. Best of all, after I imported all of my Rock Band songs, I now have a legitimately unlocked version of Timmy and the Lords of the Underworld. Timmah!!!!

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Fred Topel
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