Rock Band 4 saw the revitalisation of the once popular franchise, with a five year span between the third and fourth instalments. Harmonix have decided to use the latest game as a platform rather than just another one in the series, with updates and downloadable content coming consistently for the foreseeable future. The next major update is Rock Band Rivals, an expansion we were able to try out at Gamescom 2016 with a few other journalists.
First up is the new Rockudrama mode, which is the world’s first playable rock documentary. You create your own band and the show follows your road to glory, starting from the very bottom when you’re playing in front of just a few people at a social club to touring the world, performing in sell out stadiums. The show is called Beneath the Tuneageand doesn’t take itself too seriously, with over the top stereotypes and exaggerated personalities in interviews about your performances with friends and attendees. Rockudrama also brings a bunch of new venues, gameplay challenges and items in the Rock Shop. Check out the Rockudrama trailer below.
Rivals Mode is the other addition, which is what fans have been clamouring for for a long time. You can join a crew with up to 10 of your friends and compete in against other crews in weekly challenges and online leaderboards, with every gamemode contributing to your crews success. Themes appear each week for specific songs to play, such as only 80s songs, or ones that start with a specific letter. Even if you’re not the most skilled at Rock Band, you can still boost your team to the top of the leaderboards playing on lower difficulties. All crews start in the bronze tier, but you can get promoted all the way to bloodstone which is the tier reserved for only the best of the best. You can read more about Rivals Mode in this Reddit post from the Harmonix community lead, and check out the overview trailer below.
Pre-ordering the full expansion also rewards you with 10 bonus tracks including Little Talks – Of Monsters and Men, Happy – Pharrell Williams and King of the World – Weezer. Digital pre-orders also come with an exclusive cheeseburger t-shirt and a golden sword guitar, for that extra flair on stage. If you pre-order the physical version, you can pick up a foldable Fender guitar and another two exclusive tracks, One More Night – Maroon 5 and 3 AM – Matchbox Twenty. Overall, the full band kit will set you back £200.
All the details can be found on this blog post from Harmonix.