Harmonix: We'd love to make a next-gen Rock Band

Could the legendary music game return?

Harmonix Wed love to make a next-gen Rock Band
30th September, 2013 By Ian Morris

With its requirement for oversized plastic instrument controllers - drum kits, guitars, keyboards, and even the odd microphone if you were going for the "full band" experience, not to mention the countless tunes that would undoubtedly take your eye on the downloadable store, there are few games that ask for quite as much financial investment as Rock Band - and few that are quite as rewarding either.

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With such a simple concept - taking the idea of an air guitar and turning it into something that little bit more tangible, asking you to instead hold the buttons on the neck of a plastic guitar and strum as a coloured note drops past a line on the screen, Rock Band, and Guitar Hero before it, were nothing short of a phenomenon - awesome on your own, but incredible with a group of friends as you rocked out to your favourite songs, living the rock star dream from the comfort of your own living room. But then the fuel suddenly ran out. Rock Band 3 launched to huge critical acclaim, adding a keyboard to the line-up of potential instruments, but for one reason or another, it simply failed to light up the charts, much like its rival Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock - and both slowly disappeared from view. As quickly as it started, it seemed the guitar games were dead for good.

With the "next generation" of consoles now on the way in the shape of the Playstation 4 and Xbox One, and with neither being backwards compatible with old games, we were beginning to think we were approaching the day we'd have to hang up our rocking boots for good.

But according to developers Harmonix, that's not necessarily true.

Rock Band 3 Screenshot

Good times.

During a chat at a recent games show with the ever enthusiastic Harmonix brand manager, John Drake, we posed the question we imagine he's been asked a million times: "Will there ever be another Rock Band?" His answer in a nutshell? Hopefully.

"We never stop thinking about Rock Band, it's our favourite franchise." he replied, "We own the IP for Rock Band, so we're hoping to start some ideas for that now. Obviously, with the console generation turn over, it wouldn't make a ton of sense to make a "last gen" Rock Band right now. [But] we have some ideas, we're working some stuff around, so hopefully we'll have something to say."

So it hasn't been killed after the last game failed to live up to expectations?

"It's more like we put it on the shelf than we killed it. We still have 4,500 songs for DLC. We'll see how hardware install goes for the next generation - I mean, if people are out there, and ready to rock, I think we'll be out there with good ideas.

We're not in production on Rock Band 4, we're not making another Rock Band right now, but we're always thinking about it. We spent 4 to 6 years of our life working on it, depending on if you worked on Guitar Hero as well, before it got sold off, making Rock Band all the time. I spent three years just travelling with Rock Band, so it's in our hearts. Maybe in the future. If people want it, they should let us know. I'd love to come back and play some Rock Band here."

That makes two of us.

But you heard the man, people. If you want another Rock Band game, if you want to pick up those instruments and play along with your friends one more time, all you need to do is let Harmonix know. Here's their Facebook page and Twitter in case you feel like letting them know, say, now. In the mean time, we'll get back to finishing the career on the original Rock Band, now that every set list seems to have the infamously tricky Green Grass and High Tides in it. Be still, our aching fingers.

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