Preview: Turn It Up to 11 with Rock Band on iPhone

Rock Band iPhoneThis past week, Electronic Arts revealed the upcoming iPhone and iPod Touch renditions of the exceedingly popular console game, Rock Band, at the CTIA show in San Diego. Long has this very social game filled the living rooms of pretend rockers, but now it will expand to the mobile area, bringing a whole new meaning to “world tour” mode.

Way back in January, we looked at another music game, Tap Tap Dance from Tapulous. With the current dominance of the Tap Tap series (namely Tap Tap Revenge), we wondered why the Rock Band and Guitar Hero developers weren’t jumping onto the iPhone. Well, it looks like the wait will be worth it, because this new rhythm giant could very well oust Tapulous from its #1 spot. In a word, it looks awesome.

The mobile rendition of Rock Band will bring most of the features the console version is known for. Okay, so it’s not the same as strumming a plastic guitar, but it is still quite fun. That said, the game plays more or less the same as the Tap Tap games, having players tap frets or beats as they scroll down the screen. However, on the iPhone, Rock Band punishes (for lack of a better term) missed notes by not playing that part of the track, thus adding a great deal of depth and immersion to game play (let’s face it, nailing those tough solos without a single miss is gratifying).

Drum TrackAs with the console version, the iPhone Rock Band game also has all four instruments for play. Yes, that includes guitar, bass, drums, and vocals (at least in the final release). Each instrument has a unique track to it and comes with the varying difficulty levels that veteran virtual musicians should be familiar with. Of course, with multiple instruments, comes the desire for group play and you can bet that this feature comes with the new title too.

Connecting via Bluetooth, players can rock out to up to 20 different release songs (see below) in local multiplayer mode. Furthermore, players can choose between playing a quick single song or a myriad of sets within the long and involved world tour mode.

If local play isn’t a possibility, and single player feels dull, EA is also making use of Facebook Connect, allowing players to log in and connect with friends within the social network. In fact, the new 3.0 software is also seeing action as the game makes use of push notifications whenever your friends invite you to play, and if the 20 initial songs aren’t enough there is all ready an in-game store selling downloadable content. Currently, the first content pack is two songs from the Smashing Pumpkins for only $0.99.

Long story short, Rock Band for the iPhone looks incredible, and thankfully, its release is coming soon.

Track List:

  • 30 Seconds To Mars – “Attack”
  • AFI – “Girls Not Grey”
  • All American Rejects – “Move Along”
  • Beastie Boys – “Sabotage”
  • Blink-182 – “All The Small Things”
  • Blondie – “Hanging on the Telephone”
  • Foo Fighters – “Learn To Fly”
  • Foo Fighters – “Everlong”
  • George Thorogood & the Destroyers – “Bad to The Bone”
  • Jethro Tull – “Hymn 43”
  • Joan Jett – “Bad Reputation”
  • Lynard Skynyrd – “Simple Man”
  • Motorhead – “Ace of Spades ’08”
  • Pixies – “Debaser”
  • Presidents of The United States of America – “Ladybug”
  • Rise Against – “Give It All”
  • Silversun Pickups – “Lazy Eye”
  • Smashing Pumpkins – “Cherub Rock”
  • Steve Miller Band – “Take The Money and Run”
  • The Go Go’s – “We Got The Beat”

[images & track list via Touch Arcade]