Cover charge for Rock Band 2 song transfers

One-time fee to access original tracks in Harmonix's newest rhythm game will be "less than $5"; Rush's <i>Moving Pictures</i> coming next week.

All signs point to another epic rock-off between Activision Blizzard's and MTV Games' rhythm games this holiday season, and one of the ways that Rock Band developer Harmonix hopes to rouse crowds in its favor is its vast library of downloadable songs. During this year's E3 Media & Business Summit, Harmonix CEO Alex Rigopulos promised that more than 500 songs will be available for play in Rock Band 2, thanks in part to the ability to transfer Rock Band tracks to its successor.

However, that much-touted song-transfer ability won't be free. Speaking with MTV's Multiplayer gaming blog, Harmonix public-relations coordinator John Drake said that players will be charged a one-time fee that "will not exceed $5." At cause for the cover charge? According to Drake, Harmonix can't simply export the tunes from one game to another without ponying up extra licensing fees to the songs' rights holders.

Laying out how the exact process will work, Drake said that a patch will be rolled out for the original Rock Band on the day that its sequel is released. The patch creates an Export menu in the original game, and players who select it will then be prompted to input a password provided with the Rock Band 2 disc. After paying the aforementioned fee, Rock Band songs will then be transferred to the player's hard drive, where they can then be accessed in Rock Band 2.

MTV notes that Drake's comments regarding the process and accompanying fee thus far hold true only for the Xbox 360 edition of the game, which sees a timed exclusivity when it launches on September 14.

In other Harmonix news, the developer announced that pioneering prog-rock act Rush will lend its celebrated 1981 album Moving Pictures to Rock Band. Pricing information was not revealed for the seven-song pack, but the full-album DLC will be available for the Xbox 360 on August 26 and the PlayStation 3 two days later.

Of the seven songs in the full-album pack, "Tom Sawyer" appeared in the original Rock Band, though the new release will be a master recording. Tracks appearing in Rush's Moving Pictures are listed below.

Moving Pictures
"Tom Sawyer"
"Red Barchetta"
"YYZ"
"Limelight"
"The Camera Eye"
"Witch Hunt (Part III of Fear)"
"Vital Signs"

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Did you enjoy this article?

Sign In to Upvote

234 comments
ducky386
ducky386

OK, I understand everyone upset about the extra money, but i think they did a good thing by making the hardware from rock band 1 work with rock band two. If it's only $5 dollar for me to play all the song from rock band 1 on rock band 2 to i'm all for it.

jaketheweasel
jaketheweasel

do you complaining morons read the article first, or just the headline? Harmonix LICENSED songs for use in Rock Band, they don't own the damn songs. If they want to LEGALLY include them in the second iteration, they need to REPAY licensing fees. For ease of math, lets count 50 songs at $5.00 (even though it's more than 50 for presumably less than $5): that calculates to $.10 per song. PLUS if you don't want to pay less than 5 F-ing dollars for the ability to play them in the new tour, YOU DON'T HAVE TO. WHAT ON EARTH IS THERE TO COMPLAIN ABOUT?!?!?!? If you want to complain, complain about Guitar Hero creating a proprietary drum kit so that if you want to enjoy their drums you need to buy the package

dyaballikl
dyaballikl

how about transferring songs downloaded for rock band 1 to rock band 2? i've got over 120 of them and want to keep playing them without switching games!

0oPiEo0
0oPiEo0

I wonder how much it's going to be here in the UK...

ChampMLG
ChampMLG

Sure I know it's not their fault, but I'm sick of Harmonix always promising free stuff and they never follow through. Weren't we supposed to have free DLC, but that didn't happen. I know it wasn't Harmonix's fault, but they should seriously check their sources before the promise things. It's like 6th grade class elections when the kid running for student president promises a pizza party every day and no homework. Everyone gets excited and for what? To be shot down because it doesn't happen. Is Harmonix run by 6th graders? It seems to be that way...

albert48501
albert48501

also, yeah if u dont like the idea then just switch between discs. Vash67 is right. But some people i guess like the luxury of not having too

albert48501
albert48501

I think its cool They gotta pay for those licensing fee's dont blame them blame the other capitalistic label and record companies.... and some bands

LikwidX3
LikwidX3

alot of people may not be bothered with this fee, but i find it downright wrong. i already paid for the full game and my instruments were cheap, flimsy guitar, weak drum heads.. i honestly think i paid 100$ for the mic, lol its the nicest thing in the package. but yea.. i dont have an extra $5, i gotta get alot of games this year..

Vash67
Vash67

I'm confused, why pay money when you can just... you know... switch the disc?

Dahorsh
Dahorsh

Welcome to the dynamics of economics. Oh, and please stop whining about the charge to transfer songs. I can almost hear the voice-cracking-boo-hoo sounds from here. It is a quick-bandaid-pulling-off necessity to bask in the ability to transfer over the songs. Do you think they're just charging you five bucks for the heck of it? Do you not think that the very notion rankles them a tad as well? It's a wee fee that solves any legalities and keeps everyone at least content. Don't buy lunch for a day. Make a sandwich. See...isn't that easy? Hey hey, that advice ain't free...that'll be 5 bucks. Hoo hoo hoo! But seriously, suck it up.

c_rakestraw
c_rakestraw moderator moderator

It's a little odd that they charge you just so you can transfer songs from one game to the other. Oh well, at least you don't have to pay much.

score89
score89

this seems to me like a brilliant idea, and there is no need to do it if you don't, want to, is like all those DLC packs that many people didn't like no one is forcing you to download them, it is good to just have possibility

S2333
S2333

Haha if you rent out Rock Band and pay the $5 you can transfer all the songs. Thus making it not worth the while to buy Rock Band.

Sacred-Snow
Sacred-Snow

About this new DLC, do you think the master recordings will just replace the not so good covers of limelight and tom sawyer??

ToeMan22
ToeMan22

@Pleasurengineer You may have payed royalties for the game, but that doesn't mean the company has the rights to export the songs free of charge.

Darklaer
Darklaer

Sick. Two game libraries in one.

Darklaer
Darklaer

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

pleasurengineer
pleasurengineer

$5 for all of Rock Band 1 songs or just the DLC. If it's the entire RB1 tracklist then does that mean RB1 now essentially is a $5 video game? Example: Rent RB1, buy RB2 and have access to all songs from RB1? Sound like an odd thing generosity. By the way, Harmonix, we paid the royalties when we bought RB1. I don't need to pay them again. Jabronis!

lulu52
lulu52

Well, nobody has to pay the $5 if they don't want to, but it's worth it in my opinion. And Moving Pictures is of course good news.

Gamer_152
Gamer_152

Well if it's less than $5 and for a good reason, fair enough.

TheWarrior_94
TheWarrior_94

The people that made rock band are trying to push us to the limits by charging us just a bloody fee to transfer some songs over to rock band but I am going to do it because They said that dlc from the previous rock band will be included in carrer mode! Still stupid they hav to charge us tho because weve already spent loads (well i hav!) on dlc anyway!! :(

Pete5506
Pete5506

Fun, I am so going to download all those songs

matty_sen
matty_sen

hmm i hope if i pay for it, it does more than just save me from disc swaping

chimairawr
chimairawr

Christ, us gamers seem to be quick to moan about feeling overcharged or being hard done to. I actually welcome the idea. It's just going to improve your overall experience with the game. And if you don't understand why there's a charge, re-read the article. For this line: "Harmonix can't simply export the tunes from one game to another without ponying up extra licensing fees to the songs' rights holders." That, to me, is perfectly understandable. The fact that they're trying to keep the cost low means I have a lot of respect for them. Oh, and if you don't like it? Don't pay for it. It's only there for people who want it, and I doubt it will affect your gaming experience by it being there.

jedikevin2
jedikevin2

Nice fastfood comment DArth. +1 respect lol. Small fee is cool with me. Less then 5 is even better.

DarthPman
DarthPman

I guess the vocals on YYZ will be taping the mic. I'm willing to pay less than $5 for exporting the Rock Band tracks. It's like purchasing an extra meal from Taco Bell. Plus, I won't neglect Rock Band like I've neglected Guitar Hero 2.

Big_T-Mac
Big_T-Mac

u think that's bad? wait til u realize that even though u just paid for it to transfer over, the cover version won't transfer over, forcing you to buy tom sawyer again at a full $2.

Setsuka13
Setsuka13

That's dumb. They already charged me a ton of money for the first game. This should only be like a dollar.

alex13echo
alex13echo

So wait, the PS3 version can't have it's songs exported??? will it ever be able to?

sandshark8
sandshark8

Its worth it, but still kind of messed up. Like Harmonix didn't make enough of a profit from the first game to help its consumers a little bit the second time around. Pretty lame :roll:

Jigsaw9798
Jigsaw9798

The game's published by EA which explains it all.

omgthatwasnice
omgthatwasnice

YYZ, how is that going to work, ppl will be getting a free "100% a song on expert vocals" achievement for xbox 360 pretty easily XD

usedtype
usedtype

I can't believe all the people whining about this. If you don't want to pay $5, you don't have to. You can just swap the discs and play all the songs from both RB and RB2 without paying a fee. This is only if you want to play the 50 songs on the RB disc in RB2. You don't like the price? Don't pay it. Swap the discs!

Bytor60150
Bytor60150

Hell yes! More Rush! Moving Pictures is one of the best albums. The Camera Eye being one of my favorite Rush songs having a kick'n bass solo. I'm willing to bet the reason why the 'fluff' was left off of Chronicles was the fact that they were never released as radio singles. The first 4 songs were. So that would make sense as to why they were included in the greatest hits and not the others. Or to save space. After all, TCE is over 10min long. =)

itneverends00
itneverends00

I'm sorry but this is just something else for MTV to make money off of. We already took care of licensing fees when we bought the game originally. There shouldn't be another licensing fee for transfering the songs. The only reason why they can get away with saying that's the reason is because of people that will borrow RB1 (by doing this they never paid the licensing fee for those tracks...only RB2's).

raahsnavj
raahsnavj

I've heard of Tom Sawyer, Red Barchetta, and Limelight... the rest though weren't even good enough to get on their Chronicles compilation. That is what I mean by the album 'fluff'. Those of you that had the album I'm sure learned to either like them or ignore them. I unfortunately must have gone with the publisher and realized I didn't care to even put those out as 'greatest hits'. Thumbs down... thank you.

jjsidhu23_basic
jjsidhu23_basic

Honestly, if you can't pony up $5 for all the songs from RB 1 you need to get a paper route or something.

necronaux
necronaux

But you need RB1 to gain access to the songs in the first place. So, why not just play RB1 of you want these songs? I guess they feel that if it's just $5 people will do it because it's "just five bucks" and you'll be "playing" RB2.

starfoxmcleoud
starfoxmcleoud

That makes perfect sense! The publisher has to pay the record companies to extend it's licenses to the new game, so they're asking you to pay less than $5 to extend the licenses for your RB1 songs for RB2. Of course, the only ones that are going to complain are the thieves that steal their music from p2p networks. As for us who actually go legit, an extra $5 to play 500 songs on RB2 is no problem.

steveguttenberg
steveguttenberg

I can afford $5. Hey, I can even afford $1000. But should I have to pay? What if Microsoft began charging you a penny for every month you powered on your Xbox 360? I think we can all agree that everyone can afford to pay. But should they? Is affordability justification for any fee? It's like saying we should let them punch us softly in the face because it wouldn't hurt that much. "Hey, it's not going to kill you! Take a punch in the face! Come on!"

Gen007
Gen007

well thats some BS i wont be transferring then i mean geez these companies are crazy ill just pop in rockband 1 when i wont to play those songs. Sad thing is that they are probably gonna make a killing off this charge to move music you already own.

Zidaneski
Zidaneski

Once again, if you don't want to pay just don't pay! Man people these days. Its not like you aren't allowed to play the song anymore if you don't pay.

Zidaneski
Zidaneski

Once again, if you don't want to pay just don't pay! Man people these days. Its not like you aren't allowed to play the song anymore if you don't pay.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

The battles have begun. With both of these games coming out soon, I suspect we will continue to see news from both fronts taunting us with their features and instruments and fighting for our wallets. For every announcement that one makes, the other rebuttals with some new information about their game. It's never ending...

SweetPandaLove
SweetPandaLove

Rush. Moving Pictures. Rock band can't get better. FTW!

ldonyo
ldonyo

So, owners of Rock Band, who have already paid for the game and covered the licensing fees, are being charged $5 to copy the songs they have already paid for from the game disc to their hard drive. The license fee excuse is flimsy, at best, but plausible given that the music industry is run by thieving, greedy bastards. MTV could absorb any additional fees without batting an eye, but they're run by thieving, greedy bastards, too, so they are going to screw their customers instead.

camian69
camian69

This is great, now I can just buy GH World Tour instruments, buy both RB games and it will all work for a small fee.....I live in Australia, so this is okay with me. Still amazed at how so many just expect so much for free