LEGO Rock Band
The Rock Band franchise has been blessed with a consistent amount of quality thus far
- Some great songs, charming personality, Rock Challenges are good fun
- Not enough new content, customisation begs to be explored further
The rhythm game genre is reaching a saturation point and LEGO Rock Band is yet another example of publishers actively looking at new ways to try and keep things fresh and interesting for the established fan base. Unfortunately, while the LEGO brand has been enough to help other licences like Star Wars and Batman find new life, it just doesn't do enough to elevate Rock Band to new heights.
Price$ 89.95 (AUD)
Crossovers in entertainment media aren't anything new. If there was money to be made and merchandise to sell, you could bet your Saturday morning that the Jetsons would find their way into a Flintstones plot before you could say "continuity error." Now, the Traveler's Tales line of LEGO games have taken an interesting approach to the tried-and-true intercompany crossover conundrum: take an iconic pop culture franchise (so far so good) and then throw in an iconic... toy... block... franchise?
As odd as it sounds, the results have been impressive. LEGO Star Wars and LEGO Indiana Jones took gamers into a blockified George Lucas sandbox, and LEGO Batman introduced a fresh, zany twist on the often painfully gritty dark knight detective. Of course, this was just the beginning: LEGO Harry Potter, LEGO Indy 2, a mini-figure infested MMO are all in development, which brings us to the aforementioned conundrum: how much LEGO is too much LEGO? As one of the numerous LEGO Rock Band loading screens attests to, "There have been over 400 billion LEGO elements created since 1949. That's a lot of LEGO!"
It sure is.
The Rock Band franchise has been blessed with a consistent amount of quality thus far. The former Guitar Hero imagineers over at Harmonix managed to introduce just enough new content, charm and kickass music into each installment to pioneer their own rhythm-based revolution. This year's [[xref:http://www.gamepro.com/games/ps3/159417/the-beatles-rock-band/|Beatles Rock Band|Beatles Rock Band] only added to that fire but the question remains -- does the same apply for LEGO Rock Band? Is it an incredibly rich, magical mystery tour of music that just happens to feature an insanely popular brand of plastic playthings?
Not quite. During my time with it, I just couldn't get past the fact that it was still Rock Band, albeit with LEGOs as the dominant visual theme. There's nothing wrong with that, of course, and the trademark LEGO charm is still in full effect -- the game's cutscenes are silly and witty, and the LEGO customisation features are a nice perk -- but I couldn't help but feel that there were some missed opportunities here. I was hoping TT would go all out with the LEGO theme, allowing you to build your own guitars, stages and tour vans from a few of those 400 billion LEGO elements they so happily flaunt, but instead, we get a wide assortment of pre-made mini-figures, not to mention some outlandish instruments and Rock Den decorations. It's an interesting enough attempt but there's no escaping the feeling that it could've been so much more.
The games setlist is an interesting blend of classic and contemporary tunes - some an absolute blast to rock out to with friends ("Let's Dance" and "Free Fallin'" demand numerous replays) and some nothing more than skinny-tie and tight-jean requirements. Even with a few musical travesties in its midst, my hat is certainly off to TT for keeping some quality music in a family friendly game. In light of going the Kidz Bop route with the likes of the Alys, AJs and Hillary Duffs of the world, there's an array of genuinely interesting and toe-tapping tracks that further serve the idea that LEGO Rock Band isn't playing down to children, but playing with them. The game also has a nice collection of Rock Challenges, featuring a number of smile-inducing scenarios and goofy animations (scare away a legion of ghastly spirits with Ray Parker Jr.'s "Ghostbusters" theme and try not to smirk).
Ultimately, though, LEGO Rock Band is still vanilla Rock Band at its core, and will really only serve as a standout experience for newcomers or younger gamers. It's fun while it lasts, but it certainly won't blaze any new trails as far as virtual rockstardom goes, and diehard fans of Rock Band should hope that the devs return to their hard rocking roots for the next genuine instalment.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Google Daydream VR headset
Lexar® Portable SSD
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Acer Swift 7
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Huawei Mate 9
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Surface Pro 4
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- 2 ZTE Axon 7 review: Is ZTE dumping old stock on Australia?
- 3 Oppo R9s smartphone full review
- 4 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
- 5 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
Latest News Articles
- You can download Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes for iOS and Android today
- Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes looks sharp, but will it survive the freemium transition?
- Nintendo's bringing Super Mario Run to Android in March, but Fire Emblem's coming first
- The Switch is a mix of Nintendo's past consoles
- Dead Rising 4 impressions: 'Tis the season to BBQ zombies with your flaming sword
PCW Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- Time to ditch Foxtel and the iQ3: How to replace Foxtel packages with cheaper alternatives
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- CCUser Experience Designer - Part time - Short contractACT
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerQLD
- CCSenior Systems EngineerNSW
- FTInfrastructure Architect (Adelaide Based)VIC
- FTPMO Coordinator-Permanent Opportunity-Education/Government Background EssentialNSW
- FT.Net DeveloperVIC
- FTSalesforce AdministratorQLD
- TPScrum MasterVIC
- TPMicrosoft Dynamics DeveloperNSW
- TPSenior Service Desk AnalystNSW
- FTSenior Full Stack .Net Developer with Strong SQL DevNSW
- TPProject Manager to manage two concurrent ProjectsQLD
- FTLife/400 Resource - PermanentNSW
- CCLevel 1/2 SAP Support AnalystACT
- CCMDM Consultant/DesignerVIC
- FTMicrosoft ProgrammerSA
- TPBusiness AnalystVIC
- CCSAP ISU Device Management ConsultantNSW
- TPMid-Level Java DeveloperNSW
- FTIt Security and process analystNSW
- FTMid-Level Software Engineer x 2 - Adelaide Based (PV, NV2 or NV1 required)ACT
- CCProject SpecialistVIC
- CCSecurity Analyst - multiple rolesACT
- CCGun Java Developer wanted...VIC
- TPDesktop Support OfficerQLD