Search the Rock Band music store in-game or use rbdb.online
Welcome to the Rock Band thread!
Yes, Rock Band is still alive and getting weekly DLC. While you can expect this thread to mainly focus on Rock Band 4 and it’s expansion Rock Band Rivals, you can also discuss the previous Rock Band titles here. Or even Guitar Hero. There’s no music game fanboyism here.
Wait, Rock Band Rivals?
Rock Band Rivals is an expansion to Rock Band 4 that was released a year after the original game came out. It adds a new Rivals mode where you can recruit up to 9 other people for your Crew and then fight up the leaderboards to promote your crew every season.
Every season lasts 8 weeks, and you attempt to promote from Bronze to the highest tier, Bloodstone. Each season rewards the Gold and above tiers with cosmetic items to equip and show off in online play.
While Rivals was originally just this mode, Rivals is ALSO your online pass and is required to play online (online was added to Rock Band 4 after Rivals released). It also comes with 25 additional free songs, so the asking price for Rivals is worth it alone for the song count it gives you.
Rock Band Rivals also comes with the new “Rockumentary” mode, which is a campaign that parodies VH1’s Behind the Music. It’s pretty good and funny, but the Crew Rivals mode turned out to be a runaway hit within the community so it doesn’t get mentioned much.
Do I need Rivals to buy new DLC?
No. All DLC that has released for the Rock Band game since late 2015 only requires Rock Band 4’s base game. Rivals is only required to download any free songs (with few exemptions).
I bought a bunch of Rock Band DLC in the last generation. What happened to it?
If you bought official Rock Band DLC in the previous generation, as long as you have the SAME console family and the same account, you can play those purchases in Rock Band 4. Rock Band Network songs purchases do NOT carry forward to Rock Band 4 for legal reasons, but Harmonix is porting select RBN songs to Rock Band 4 for purchase.
If you want to buy a song to play on both Rock Band 4 and the Xbox 360 (any DLC that came out during RB3 and previous), you need to buy the 360 version from the Xbox web store first. If you buy it on Xbox One, it will ONLY entitle you to an RB4 copy. This is a limitation of the MS store.
On Playstation, you can buy a pre-RB4 song on either PS3 and PS4 and the entitlement will be granted on both platforms.
Do I still need instruments to play?
Guitars and Drums still require the actual instrument controllers to play. Vocals only needs a standard USB mic and a regular controller to navigate menus and activate overdrive if you’ve disabled voice-activated overdrive.
If you have instruments from the previous generation, they will work on Xbox with either the Wireless Adapter or the extremely expensive PDP Wired Adapter if you want to use a MIDI drumkit. On Playstation, no adapters are needed. This is due to Microsoft being weird about USB port security. You cannot use RB1 wired instruments or the GH2 wired Xplorer with the Wired Adapter either for this reason.
Instrument costs are rising and be aware of scalpers. Harmonix is aware of the demand for new instruments but current conditions do not allow them to make a new instrument production run.
Rock Band Rivals Season Passes
Every Rivals Season also comes with a Season Pass. Previously this was called the Spotlight Pass and would grant you the new spotlight songs for each challenge. As of the most recent Season though, it’s now the Season Pass and will grant you ALL of the new DLC that releases for 8 weeks. The price of the season pass scales to how many songs are in it, so it’s never consistent. After the season concludes, the pass goes away, so while you can wait and see what songs are in it before buying, don’t wait too long. Or you can buy it blind the first day it’s up and accept your fate. It’s up to you. If you are interested in building your library as fast as possible, it does produce savings.
Exporting Previous Rock Band Titles
You can export Rock Band Track Packs that are NEW and/or have UNREDEEMED manual codes from the Xbox 360. This also grants you the delisted songs, if any appear on that track pack. Unfortunately, it seems Sony has expired the track pack codes on the Playstation side.
If you previously exported Rock Band 1, 2, Green Day, or Lego Rock Band in the 360/PS3 days, that export will be waiting for you to install on Rock Band 4 as long as you’re using the same account. You had to actually finish and complete the export back then to be eligible. 3’s export expired in December 2020.
I want to eventually learn a real instrument. Does Rock Band help with this?
Rock Band can help you learn some basics like timekeeping and finger independence on guitar/bass, especially altstrumming. If you want to take it further though, Rocksmith is recommended for learning real guitar/bass. A lot of us that play Rock Band also play Rocksmith. It’s okay to play both!
Drums are much closer to real drums than the other instruments are to their counterparts. You will learn full limb independence, most drum techniques, etc, but due to the limitations of the drum controller and the standard pedal, it doesn’t teach advanced techniques like managing the hi-hat, double pedal, or ghost notes. If you play a lot of drums in Rock Band, become comfortable on expert and want to take it further, you should seek out drum lessons to expand your skillset. A lot of Rock Band drummers have gone on to play in real bands, and a lot of the high level Rock Band drum players were experienced real drummers before the game came out.
But Rock Band had Pro Guitar and Pro Keys in Rock Band 3. What happened with that?
Rocksmith won the “teaching guitar as a game” war. We’re cool with each other. Even Harmonix will tell you to go buy Rocksmith to learn guitar.
Keys were dropped for Rock Band 4 due to low usage and interest. They’re not coming back.
Are any of the songs from previous games available anymore now that the exports are expired?
Harmonix makes select songs from time to time (and those time to times are very large gaps) available as "Rock Band Rewind"s from previous discs.
Do I have to re-buy the RBN re-releases even though I bought it back on the 360 or PS3?
Yes. Purchases could not come forward due to legal reasons on RBN songs. Their other choice was to never bring back any RBN. It is what it is.
Hey, I remember the community Harmony Project from Rock Band 3 that required installing a mod on my 360. What happened with that?
Harmonix worked out a deal with the community to OFFICIALLY integrate the Harmony Project into Rock Band 4, so the vast majority of the Rock Band library that released pre-RB3 now has harmonies. This adds hundreds of songs to the harmony suite. Neat! They’re automatically included in Rock Band 4 with no extra steps.