EA Games Rock Band

It finally arrives for the Wii!

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EA Games Rock Band
  • EA Games Rock Band
  • EA Games Rock Band
  • EA Games Rock Band

Pros

  • Same fantastic gameplay, amazing multiplayer, sleek Wii instruments

Cons

  • Lack of online play, no band customisation, less than stellar visuals

Bottom Line

The only reason a Wii owner has to not invest in Rock Band is if they already own the 360 or PS3 version; otherwise, it's a no-brainer for sure.

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Eight gruelling months-that's how long Wii owners have had to suffer without Rock Band. While their PS3 and Xbox 360 counterparts have been partaking of the rock and/or roll to their heart's content, Wii owners have been denied sweet, sweet rhythm game perfection.

Well, the wait is finally over and the members of the Nintendo Nation need suffer no longer: the Wii version of Rock Band is finally here and as you can guess, it rocks.

Late to the party

The first thing the naysayers are going to point out about the Wii version of Rock Band is its obvious shortcomings compared to the other versions. With so much content crammed on to a much smaller disc, some corners definitely had to be cut in order to maintain the full musical gaming experience. Character, band and guitar customisation has been completely removed, as well as online play and downloadable content. The graphics have taken a slight hit, with blocky characters rocking out against pre-rendered backgrounds.

Stlyish as they may be, there were a few things about the design of the Wii guitars that bothered me. They're identical in quality to those featured on the other platforms but they rely upon a bulky dongle for wireless functionality. Rock Band clutters up your living room enough as it is and I really wish they'd figured out a way to integrate the wireless receivers into the unit itself.

Those prepared to rock...

Thankfully, the gameplay hasn't changed a bit and the game is still an absolute blast. Despite the dongle, the Wii guitars are stylish and responsive, the drum set is stable and resilient to even the most hardcore drum solos, and the mic is sensitive enough to pick up even the screechiest vocals. The game's soundtrack is well stocked with a catalogue of 63 songs that sound fantastic. The only disappointing thing is that there are no exclusive tracks-the five extra tracks are all available as DLC tunes on Xbox Live Marketplace and the Playstation Network. If Nintendo had been smart, they would have allowed Harmonix to include classic NES songs like the Super Mario Bros. and Legend of Zelda themes.

Still, despite a few obvious limitations, it's still Rock Band, which means it's a fantastic gaming experience that's great played solo or with friends. The Wii's a great party console as it is and Rock Band is a powerful addition to the arsenal.

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