Rock Band 4 One-ups Guitar Hero Live: Supports Old Guitar Hero Gear

Rock Band 4 One-ups Guitar Hero Live: Supports Old Guitar Hero Gear

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Guitar Hero Live won't support your old Guitar Hero instruments... but Rock Band 4 will happily take them.

Guitar Hero Live and Rock Band 4 have only just been announced, and already shots are being fired in the war of plastic instruments. While Harmonix is planning on having Rock Band 4 be backwards compatible, Activision made it clear that Guitar Hero Live would not support any of your old gear. So time to throw out all your old Guitar Hero guitars, right? Wrong. Harmonix has announced that as well as supporting old Rock Band instruments, it would also be supporting old Guitar Hero ones.

"We're planning to support everything that we can: That includes all of the old Rock Band controllers, and all the old Guitar Hero controllers," project director Daniel Sussman told Business Insider in an interview.

"Our position is really all about respect for our consumers and for the money that they have spent to get into the game space in the first place. They spend a fortune on games: on consoles, on hardware, and we're sensitive to that. We play those games too. We buy all the same stuff. A world where you need to have three different guitars and two drum sets and all this stuff is...we don't want to support that world," Sussman continued.

To be fair to Guitar Hero, the new title will use a completely redesigned guitar with six buttons instead of the traditional five... but Sussman is already thinking about patching support for it into Rock Band. "I don't see anything on it that makes me think that we couldn't figure out a way to support it," he says. "And yet I won't know for sure until we get one in the office."

Source: Business Insider

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I've never been into any of these types of games--unless you count DDR, for which I still have the old PS2 mat for. But, I think this is a good move. I wish more companies would at least try to do stuff like this because he's right. We spend a fortune on games and hardware, and it would be nice if we could keep playing with that stuff later down the road instead of it becoming just stuff collecting dust.

Well, I know who I'll be supporting in Plastic Instrument War II then.

I'd like to see them "two-up" and bring RB4 to the Wii U so I can use my Wii GH instruments. Still dirty there's no Wii U port...

See, this is why competition in the market is good, least when the creators don't try and DRM/Paywall their troubles away :)

Good thing my mate saved all his old GH stuff. :D
Combined with how the old DLC will be supported, song suggestions, and now this, it's shaping up to be a good game.

NoeL:
I'd like to see them "two-up" and bring RB4 to the Wii U so I can use my Wii GH instruments. Still dirty there's no Wii U port...

They already two-up them: Old DLCs are supported in RB4, but not in GHL. So, a WiiU Port would be 2.5-uping.

To tally things up...

Rock Band thought it's about time for a new game, Guitar Hero just wants to make a new one because Rock Band is.
RB will support the old song you already own, GH will not. The same with instruments.

Unless GH does something really interesting, This new plastic instruments war will be so one-sided

Bindal:

NoeL:
I'd like to see them "two-up" and bring RB4 to the Wii U so I can use my Wii GH instruments. Still dirty there's no Wii U port...

They already two-up them: Old DLCs are supported in RB4, but not in GHL. So, a WiiU Port would be 2.5-uping.

Yeah, my only console is a WiiU, and I'd love to rock out to Alice in Chains.

I know I'm biased because I always preferred Guitar Hero to Rock Band, but I don't think this is necessarily a one-up for Rock Band. It's awesome that I can use my old equipment, but it also means that they've taken 5 years off and aren't planning on changing much besides putting it on the new generation of consoles.

I'm not really annoyed that I have to spend $100 for GHL, because it does look like they've actually taken a huge gamble and are completely changing up their game. If they wanted to make it backwards with old DLC, they would have to completely change the arrangements of every single past installment for the new controller, which for GH is probably around 500 or so songs.

I don't want a new music game just so I don't have to turn on my 360, If I wanted to play those old songs then I'll just break that out. GHL looks like something new and honestly I'm excited about having to learn a new controller from scratch again. My fondest memories of the genre are the first few weeks with Guitar Hero 2 pounding and plinking away at Heart Shaped Box and Crazy on You. It's going to be a frustrating blast to have to actually go below Expert with I first pick this game up.

So long as RB4 supports the MadCatz MIDI interface, it will be a day one purchase for me. It's all wired USB, so it shouldn't be a problem. But I've been disappointingly surprised before.

List:
To tally things up...

Rock Band thought it's about time for a new game, Guitar Hero just wants to make a new one because Rock Band is.
RB will support the old song you already own, GH will not. The same with instruments.

Unless GH does something really interesting, This new plastic instruments war will be so one-sided

Let's give Activision *SOME* credit here. They've probably been working on GH Live for a year or more. They've definitely been working on it since before Harmonix announced that they're making RB4.

Citizen Snips:
I know I'm biased because I always preferred Guitar Hero to Rock Band, but I don't think this is necessarily a one-up for Rock Band. It's awesome that I can use my old equipment, but it also means that they've taken 5 years off and aren't planning on changing much besides putting it on the new generation of consoles.

I'm not really annoyed that I have to spend $100 for GHL, because it does look like they've actually taken a huge gamble and are completely changing up their game. If they wanted to make it backwards with old DLC, they would have to completely change the arrangements of every single past installment for the new controller, which for GH is probably around 500 or so songs.

I don't want a new music game just so I don't have to turn on my 360, If I wanted to play those old songs then I'll just break that out. GHL looks like something new and honestly I'm excited about having to learn a new controller from scratch again. My fondest memories of the genre are the first few weeks with Guitar Hero 2 pounding and plinking away at Heart Shaped Box and Crazy on You. It's going to be a frustrating blast to have to actually go below Expert with I first pick this game up.

Fan feedback that Harmonix received indicated that the VAST majority of respondents (over 65,000 people!) really wanted their old songs and instruments to be compatible. There's nothing wrong with keeping the same core gameplay to allow for that compatibility. The core gameplay was rock solid as it was and doesn't need a major innovation. I'll be satisfied with a great setlist, some awesome new visuals, a return of head to head multiplayer modes, and a really cool career mode (RB3 kind of dropped the ball on that)

Citizen Snips:
I know I'm biased because I always preferred Guitar Hero to Rock Band, but I don't think this is necessarily a one-up for Rock Band. It's awesome that I can use my old equipment, but it also means that they've taken 5 years off and aren't planning on changing much besides putting it on the new generation of consoles.

You know that the double cymbals, double bass pedal, slider bar, etc. were all Rock Band innovations, right? They changed stuff up without mandating that people buy new peripherals every generation. It's entirely possible that the new controllers will again have new features, and the songs will again be compatible despite the differences in peripherals. Reverse compatibility is something for which Rock Band DEFINITIVELY holds an advantage over Guitar Hero. Without more announcements being made, all we can say is that Guitar Hero MIGHT have an advantage over Rock Band in the innovation department.
Besides, from the description, it seems that the changes to the Guitar Hero controller were to make it easier to use, and this will come at the expense of making the buttons resemble guitar tabs even less. Unless they're planning on keeping the name, but are actually sneaking in a ukulele simulator, as that's the only string instrument that comes to mind that is both small enough to (potentially) not need you to move your hand up and down the fret board and also does not require a bow.

ccggenius12:
You know that the double cymbals, double bass pedal, slider bar, etc. were all Rock Band innovations, right?

Can't confirm the others, but double bass was definitely Guitar Hero first (in GH Metallica). Rock Band has never had a slider bar, although the solo buttons are similar functionality; double cymbals depends entirely on your definition.

ccggenius12:
but are actually sneaking in a ukulele simulator

image

I'm looking forward to the new Rock Band, can't wait to rock out some more with all those old songs I bought. I'll still keep an eye on the new Guitar Hero, but unless they actually do pull off something really innovative that still manages to be good, I'm gonna have to go with RB on this one.

If only there was a way to play this with a PC, I'd be all over it.

Kinitawowi:

ccggenius12:
You know that the double cymbals, double bass pedal, slider bar, etc. were all Rock Band innovations, right?

Can't confirm the others, but double bass was definitely Guitar Hero first (in GH Metallica). Rock Band has never had a slider bar, although the solo buttons are similar functionality; double cymbals depends entirely on your definition.

I think you're right about the double bass pedals, and you're definitely right about the slider bar since GH is the only one to use a slider bar. The solo buttons predate the slider bar though.

Also GH was the first one to have dedicated cymbal pads, but RB had addon peripherals as early as (I think) RB1 that would allow you to mount cymbals on your kit. They just didn't differentiate between the yellow cymbal and the yellow pad, same for the other colours. Cymbals weren't officially supported and differentiated in RB until RB3 when they added Pro Drums.

Honestly not really sure what the guy you quoted was talking about, since RB has NEVER officially supported "double cymbals", double bass pedal (except a very small number of RBN tracks), or a slider bar.

Kinitawowi:

ccggenius12:
You know that the double cymbals, double bass pedal, slider bar, etc. were all Rock Band innovations, right?

Can't confirm the others, but double bass was definitely Guitar Hero first (in GH Metallica). Rock Band has never had a slider bar, although the solo buttons are similar functionality; double cymbals depends entirely on your definition.

The original drum kit had four pads, at some point they went up to five, with two of them being raised. It's probable that that was also a GH thing. I will admit I've evidently mis-remembered everything else (except the content thing). It's just that, for whatever reason, it FEELS like Guitar Hero did less with the genre. And you have to admit, the Rock Band track library absolutely DWARFS the GH one. The track maker was neat, but there's just something about officially licensed recordings. (Maybe it's the vocals?)

ccggenius12:

Kinitawowi:

ccggenius12:
You know that the double cymbals, double bass pedal, slider bar, etc. were all Rock Band innovations, right?

Can't confirm the others, but double bass was definitely Guitar Hero first (in GH Metallica). Rock Band has never had a slider bar, although the solo buttons are similar functionality; double cymbals depends entirely on your definition.

The original drum kit had four pads, at some point they went up to five, with two of them being raised. It's probable that that was also a GH thing. I will admit I've evidently mis-remembered everything else (except the content thing). It's just that, for whatever reason, it FEELS like Guitar Hero did less with the genre. And you have to admit, the Rock Band track library absolutely DWARFS the GH one. The track maker was neat, but there's just something about officially licensed recordings. (Maybe it's the vocals?)

Rock Band never did the 5 pads with 2 elevated cymbals. That was a GH: World Tour thing.

Rock Band always stayed with 4 pads (red yellow blue green), with the option to add up to 3 cymbals (yellow blue green) for pro drums.

This whole discussion begs the question of why Rock Band and Guitar Hero never tried to pool resources to make a combined guitar. Work independently on the engines and interfaces and chart philosophies, sure, but with the axes (in particular) being interchangeable for so long, surely if they'd combined they could have saved some money on production and development costs - and as I understand it, part of the first slow death of rhythm gaming was precisely because of the increasingly prohibitive costs of controller production.

Maybe they could have come up with a core schematic together and then built their unique designs around that (the WoRtar would have been a perfect central design if anyone still cared). Of course, all that said, the whole genre still pretty much peaked with the original Gibson SG...

Kinitawowi:
This whole discussion begs the question of why Rock Band and Guitar Hero never tried to pool resources to make a combined guitar. Work independently on the engines and interfaces and chart philosophies, sure, but with the axes (in particular) being interchangeable for so long, surely if they'd combined they could have saved some money on production and development costs - and as I understand it, part of the first slow death of rhythm gaming was precisely because of the increasingly prohibitive costs of controller production.

Maybe they could have come up with a core schematic together and then built their unique designs around that (the WoRtar would have been a perfect central design if anyone still cared). Of course, all that said, the whole genre still pretty much peaked with the original Gibson SG...

I think this comes down a lot to the history of Rock Band and Guitar Hero. Guitar Hero was originally developed by Harmonix with the help of RedOctane who acted as the publisher and manufacturer of the guitars. Harmonix was the dev for Guitar hero under contract for 3 titles: Guitar Hero, Guitar Hero 2, and Guitar Hero:Rocks the 80's. Activision bought RedOctane and the Guitar Hero IP after the release of Guitar Hero 2. Since Harmonix was still under contract, they made an Xbox 360 port of GH2 and Rock's the 80's while under Activision.

Activision LET THEM GO after this because they figured they only needed Red Octane and the IP, and they threw Neversoft on as the developer and essentially cast Harmonix aside. Harmonix, being the actual creative party behind the franchise then got picked up by MTV Games and Viacom and made Rock Band. Harmonix has since freed themselves and their IP from Viacom by buying themselves out and becoming essentially indie devs again.

So Harmonix was the brain child behind both Rock Band and Guitar Hero, but because Activision thought they weren't needed anymore they essentially got cast aside. I don't really expect them to work too closely with each other due to this previous relationship.

"Our position is really all about respect for our consumers and for the money that they have spent to get into the game space in the first place. They spend a fortune on games: on consoles, on hardware, and we're sensitive to that. We play those games too. We buy all the same stuff. A world where you need to have three different guitars and two drum sets and all this stuff is...we don't want to support that world," Sussman continued.

...Activision, d'you want to come back here and pick up this trail of ashes? 'Cuz you've been burned.

 

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