Published on September 1st, 2012 | by Charlie


Review: Rock Band Blitz

Review: Rock Band Blitz Charlie
Replay value

Summary: Charlie takes a look at Rock Band Blitz, is it worth the money? read the review to find out!


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Since the release of Rock Band 3 in 2010, Harmonix had been working on a brand new Rock Band game that didn’t require any of the instruments that cost too much to buy. All that’s needed in this game is your controller; Rock Band Blitz is a downloadable game like no other and will literally have you thinking (or saying) “Just… one… more… song…” The only Rock Band I had played prior to this was the iOS game, but I was intrigued to play this game, and I am thankful that I was given this opportunity. So if you’ve ever played a Rock Band game, there will be a sense of familiarity. Each song will have notes that you will have to play, ranging from the drums, bass, guitar, singing and keyboard (fortunately, you don’t have to actually perform with those, so put your singing voice away). The aim of playing a song isn’t to get a high streak in notes; the reason being is that you’ll have to switch from one instrument to the next. To play the left note, you have to use your thumb stick/d-pad and to play the right note, you use the right thumb stick/A/X. Playing with these buttons will at first feel a little strange, especially if you are used to the instruments, but you should get used to it pretty quickly. To switch from instrument to instrument, you use your bumpers (RB/R1 and LB/L1). On your left, you have the score multiplier chain, where you need to get each instrument to the top of the score chain. Again, it’s not about getting a high streak, so when an instrument is at a 7x score multiplier, it will remain there until you can get it higher, but in order to go higher than the actual chain will go, you’ll need to get each instrument above the bottom multiplier, so for example, if all your instruments are at 5x and one instrument is at 2x, when you reach a checkpoint, the multiplier chain won’t budge, but say all your instruments ARE at 5x and you hit a checkpoint, then the chain will move up and you’ll now be aiming for an 8x multiplier. It sounds extremely complicated, but it’s really not (perhaps it’s just poor wording. It’s difficult to explain you see). Before you pick a song, you have the option to buy power ups with coins you earn from songs; every new song you play gives you double coins, which is pretty fair. Power ups are unlocked depending on your Blitz Cred score so the more you play, the more you unlock.The first power up you can choose is your “Overdrive”, which can be used when you have enough energy from hitting white notes. These power ups vary from ‘Point Doubler’, which will double your score, just like classic Rock Band, ‘Shockwave’ which will give you points for every note visible in front of you, and ‘Bottle Rocket’ which will fire a rocket further up the note board and destroy all those notes, giving you a bundle of points. Next you have your “Note” power-up, which can be activated when you hit a purple note on a board. These vary from ‘Blast Notes’, which will destroy all the notes in front of you and to the sides of you, and ‘Pinball’ which is probably my most favorite, where a pinball will travel over notes in front of you, and to keep the ball going, you need to move to the correct note board. The ball will get faster and eventually, you’ll lose control of the ball. Finally, you have your “Track” power up, which will simply give you bonus points depending on what instrument you’ve chosen to have the power up, so if you’ve chosen the ‘Super Drums’, you’ll get bonus points the more you play in that track. It’s a good set of power ups, but it forces you to learn which track has more notes so then you’ll have the chance to hit them. Although, if you choose not to use a ‘Super’ power-up, then there’s one more in this category called ‘Synchrony’, where you will be given bonus points if you switch the track at the right moment; these are just some of all of the power ups you can unlock. The only problems I have with these power ups is that if you buy power ups, especially if you’ve bought all 3 power ups, but decide to restart, you’ve pretty much lost those power ups and the Cred you used to spend with them; it would be more fair if it just restarts the song rather than taking me back to the power up menu. It’s almost like the game is gloating in my face that way. Rock Band Blitz comes with 25 songs for you to pick from various genres. Songs include all time favorites like:
  • Barenaked Ladies – One Week
  • Maroon 5 – Moves Like Jagger
  • Elton John – I’m Still Standing
  • Kelly Clarkson – Stronger
  • Avenged Sevenfold – So Far Away
  • Tears for Fears – Shout
These are just some among the 25 tracks to choose from. But that’s not all, because any song you have purchased throughout any of the Rock Band games can also be played in Rock Band Blitz, so there’s no need for repurchasing, which is only fair of course. It’s just a shame that songs are pretty expensive though throughout all the Rock Band games and I’d love to see Harmonix release some free song packs. The fun doesn’t stop there of course, because you can also challenge friends to a “Score War”, whether you challenge them over Facebook or via the game. This is a battle over a period of 3 days where you and a friend fight it out to earn the highest score in a song. The winning person will win the prize of 50 Blitz Cred and 750 Coins (which is a lot considering the prices of the power ups), while the loser only gets 10 Blitz Cred and 250 Coins, which in itself is pretty good for a runner up prize. I do feel like 3 days is a bit of a long time though. Using the Facebook app “Rock Band World”, you can also set challenges for yourself where if you complete them, you’ll earn bonus Coins and Cred. The game itself is more colourful than any of the Rock Band games (probably). When you hit “Blitz Mode”, you’ll really appreciate the work Harmonix have done with the graphics, even if they’re not top notch. Getting to “Blitz Mode” might be a little bumpy though, because synchronization can be a bit of a problem. Whilst the game recommends to sync your controller to the game before playing, even when you are synced it can be a little hard to hit notes at the right time; sometimes the controller won’t respond the way you thought it would. Rock Band Blitz is a game where you’ll want to turn up the volume and just rock it out with the controller; it’s addictive, and adrenaline-filled fun. It has a few minor hiccups, but even so, it doesn’t stop you from having a great time with this game.

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About the Author

Some say I should be a video game journalist, others say a video game designer. Shame you can't be both.

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