Harmonix: Rock Band 4 is not in development

Developer confirms that though it has ideas for next entry in the music-game series, no such game is in development right now.

Harmonix has ideas for what the next entry in the Rock Band series could be, but the game is not in active development right now, the Cambridge, Mass. developer said today at PAX East.

"No, we are not making Rock Band 4; it is not in development; it is not actively being produced in the studio. We have thoughts about what it could be and would love to put it out," director of publishing and PR John T. Drake said today.

Yesterday during the keynote address at PAX East, Harmonix CEO Alex Rigopulos said Harmonix has "grand plans" to revive the Rock Band and Dance Central franchises for the "coming console cycle." This would presumably mean Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Wii U.

Also during the Harmonix panel today, Drake talked about the company's new free-to-play rhythm-runner game Record Run, which is said to launch "soon." It will roll out first for iOS devices and later for Android. As for Windows Phone devices, Drake said, "We're ambitious; we're not crazy," going on to note that he is a fan of those devices.

Finally, Drake teased that Harmonix has a new game to reveal and its announcement could be imminent. "We'll have another game to talk about soon, which is pretty cool," Drake said. Unfortunately, no other details are available.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Discussion

17 comments
theantifanboy
theantifanboy

Protip: for those about to make the inevitable "omg play a real instrument or play Rocksmith" comment, check the screenshot.

There's a six string guitar highway with a numbered fret.

There's a lane on the drums highway that shows a long chain of hi-hats, along with the regular tom/snare notes.

There's a keyboard. A freaking keyboard. Which actual freaking keys.

Yeah. Those are real instruments. Rock Band 3 evolved to allow a full band's worth of them in 2010. For reference, Rocksmith came out in 2011.

Not shown? The bass part. Triple harmony vocals.

Go figure.

g1rldraco7
g1rldraco7

Hmmmm, I don't see this working because of Rocksmith.

fredyellowone
fredyellowone

With the crash of Bandfuse, and new technology that Rocksmith got us, I think Next Rock Band installation will feature both midis and plastic controllers, as well as real guitar, bass and microphone support.  There is going to be a real challenge though.  The absence of AV in on both the PS4 and Xbox 1.  So , they will have to overcome the extra audio processing by some sort of a USB sound cable that you will use to send your audio to your stereo system.

As for the drums, don't expect a real support for it.  Not enough drummers to justify the cost of that. 

Sevenizz
Sevenizz

Dance Central 4 for Xbox One, please!

starhowl
starhowl

starhowl: Bright Fangs of cloudy spheres

not in development


thanks for the news anyway.

tjkraz
tjkraz

Not enough next gen consoles sold yet to justify.  I HOPE that in a couple of years...when PS4 and XB1 have each sold 20-30 million systems...that Harmonix can justify a new Rock Band.  


Too bad that EA and Activision really ran the genre into the ground.  Harmonix will have to come up with something uniquely different.  I don't think there are enough consumers left who are willing to spend $200-$250 on a box of plastic instruments.  

playstationzone
playstationzone

Well Eddie Your Fired               

reason pubshing   a fake story.

Lawdog1521
Lawdog1521

@g1rldraco7  RS is great but has no drums, keyboards, or real vocals. Also, it's not really a party game.

theantifanboy
theantifanboy

@fredyellowone Rock Band 3, which was released in 2010, already had support for real guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, microphones (which they had since Rock Band 1, though Beatles RB introduced triple harmonies and that carried over to RB3), and was fully designed to allow the use of MIDI instruments as well as plastic game controllers.

For Sun's sake, the game supported more than twice as many real instruments as Rocksmith and came out a year earlier. It blows my mind how few people know this. 

fredyellowone
fredyellowone

@Killer6b9 Thank Goodness for what?  If you don't play these games, why would/should you care?

playstationzone
playstationzone

@tjkraz dont forget ubisoft  did a gutiar game since was a lot differnet so guess they should leave series alone and maybe do a free to play rock band.

randomkidlol
randomkidlol

@playstationzone  They cant fire Eddie. How else are they gonna turn the entire comments section into a massive frenzy and getting people to click on the articles even if they dont care about the products involved?

fredyellowone
fredyellowone

@theantifanboy Rock Band 3 WAS NOT supporting real instruments.  To use pro mode you had to either buy the plastic Fender Mustang or the modified stratocaster.  In both cases, the music was not coming from the guitar, but from prerecorded stems.  Rock Band 3 wouldn't know if you played the real thing, as the game was only look if you had your fingers in the right position.

tjkraz
tjkraz

@playstationzone @tjkraz  Yeah...Rocksmith.  I think there may have been 1 or 2 others as well.  


Using a real guitar for gameplay seems to be tried-and-true now.  Unfortunately that limits access to just real musicians.  Or at least budding musicians willing to invest hundreds in actual instruments.  


I was always a fan of drums myself.  And the keyboard support on RB3 was pretty cool.  


Still it's sort of a Catch-22.  Can casual fans be convinced to buy another $200 package of plastic instruments?  Or are there enough real musicians willing to invest in a music video game?  


Waiting a few years for some of the exclusive licensing deals to end will help.  It would help a lot of a Rock Band 4 featured songs from Aerosmith, Van Halen, Metallica...even Taylor Swift (who was exclusive to Activision's Band Hero.)  


Not sure how free-to-play would work given the music licensing costs.  Personally, I had no problem spending $1-2 here and there for a great song.