Rock Band big in Japan

Harmonix strikes deal with Lumines dev Q Entertainment to help develop a "heavily localized" version of its popular multi-instrument rhythm game across the Pacific.

Around the turn of the century, Konami helped establish the instrument-based rhythm genre by releasing two games--Guitar Freaks (1999) and Drummania (2000)--in Japan. Now, after nearly a decade since Taiko titles reigned supreme, the island nation is getting a new wave of rock-and-roll-centric rhythm games.

Less than a month after Konami announced its re-entry in to the sector with Rock Revolution, Harmonix announced a "heavily localized" version of its triple-platinum-plus-selling Rock Band, cryptically titled Rock Band: Japan. According to Harmonix, the game is the first Western-developed rhythm title to be reworked for Japan, and will feature many Japanese acts. No release date or platforms have yet been announced.

Even more interesting is the company that is partnering with Harmonix to ensure Rock Band's award-winning gameplay doesn't get lost in translation. That would be none other than Q Entertainment, the independent developer founded by Tetsuya Mizuguchi, famed designer of groundbreaking rhythm game Space Channel 5. The studio, founded in 2003, was behind the wildly popular Lumines puzzle series and the less popular Meteos, Ninety-Nine Nights, and Every Extend Extra Extreme.

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Discussion

85 comments
GREAT-MAZINGER
GREAT-MAZINGER

I have in mind ---- JAM PROJECT ---- HA HA HA HA. and some of others.. My girlfriend loves L´ARC EN CIEL. I Would like also DIR EN GREY.. --- Hope we receive a localization of the pack ---

gundam691
gundam691

Ya i just cant wait but its taking them a while also songs from animes are not the only things theyll put in if they do it!!!

Koto2291
Koto2291

i agree with FusionHunterX. it would be awesome to see some J-Rock as DLC. "Buiki Kaesu", "What's Up People?!", "Alumina", "The World", "God Knows", "Lost My Music", just way too many to name

FusionHunterX
FusionHunterX

I would love for the Japanese songs to be available on the Xbox Marketplace and the PlayStation Network. I'm half Japanese, so I would be sooo thrilled. I would like to see Maximum the Hormone, L'Arc-en-Ciel, Kimaguren, Southern All-Stars, UVERworld, Sambo Master, Asian Kung-Fu Generation...man..there's too many to name. I mean the have european bands on there, so why not add some "Ragin' Cajun Asian" flavor to Rock Band?

IceDefenseGod
IceDefenseGod

We'd better get some Japanese songs. Most American's are too ignorant to realize the pwnage of J-Rock.

hoyholyhoy
hoyholyhoy

HOLY CRACK! Japan AND Rock!? This is a dream!!!

Commando69
Commando69

That's some pretty heavy stuff. Those people are soooooo lucky!!

FoUDarthBob
FoUDarthBob

over/under on how many people in the us will try to get this game

TreyTable
TreyTable

At least it will have better songs than what was included on the Rock Band disc.

blazewind191
blazewind191

news for the actual game on release for the wii would be nice rather than "news" about the game in some other country

Senor_Kami
Senor_Kami

Is the 360/PS3 region locked for games?

aerisISalive
aerisISalive

Brooooo we have to get that. I would freakin love to play it. But the vocals would be tough.

4lic
4lic

OMG... I have to see how this is going to be.. Singing Gackt, the Gazette, Dir en grey songs would be awesome!!!

decoy1978
decoy1978

I would not mind importing RB: Japan

FX102
FX102

Being a fan of Japanese music, I hope this is region free as I'll probably import it; the peripherals of course I'd pick up in-country.

okassar
okassar

LLLLOOOOLLZZ,Rock Band Japan,I guess that's good for marketing strategy though because Japanese people tend to buy domestic products and although RB isn't domestic for them,Rock Band Japan might work out.Rock Revolution,by the way,looks pretty cheap.I doubt it will compete,what the hell,keep it to GH and RB.

MasterEIC
MasterEIC

Personally, I'd love to grab a copy or Rock Band: Japan myself. Japan has it's own taste in music, and the rock scene over there is quite big. Big names include "L'arc en Ciel", "X Japan" and (cringe) "Gakt". Acts like "BEAT CRUSADERS" and "Asian Kung-Fu Generation" have gotten international exposure through their songs that are featured in animes, and "the pillows" had their music be the entire soundtrack for one. Also consider indie bands, like the "Sparta Locals". Look up these bands to get a feel for their sound.

Pedro7_2000
Pedro7_2000

"and the less popular Meteos, Ninety-Nine Nights, and Every Extend Extra Extreme." These were still good games though.

klugenbeel
klugenbeel

And you thought listening to Europeans signing in this was bad, wait till you hear the 12 year old Japanese kids sing Celebrity Skin! lol

otanikun
otanikun

Spiffy, wish I could get my hands on that version of RB

David_Kniffin
David_Kniffin

DrCLos, you're right. A lot of Japanese people love American songs, so I'm sure there will be some demand to get our music as DLC. I hope EA/MTV/Harmonix realizes how much both sides of the world want to be exposed to each other's music and provides us all with the option to get our hands on the imports.

David_Kniffin
David_Kniffin

I live in Japan, but I don't want to buy a Japanese PS3 to play this. I really hope these songs become available as DLC for us, like the European songs already have.

Kool212
Kool212

Would be nice if the songs could be downloaded over here.

Jedilink109
Jedilink109

Well heck, this would be cool over here too! I hope they've got some Hyde in there. :D

salamancecool
salamancecool

Lets hope the songs come out over DLC so I dont have pay loads to import.

SonicTheMonkey
SonicTheMonkey

Hmm, Rock Band Filled with J Pop? I kinda want to import this game now...

finaleve
finaleve

I was wonderwing when they would be bringing Rock Band across seas...about time. I would love to see a guitar hero of japanese bands. I've heard some songs I'd love to play...

Spectre-123
Spectre-123

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

MoonMarvel
MoonMarvel

Hope this comes out here! Would be fun rocking out to Japanese bands! Never heard any before so I am open to them!

vashkey
vashkey

Wouldnt it be somthing if Harmonix brought Rockband: Japan to the US? I'd buy it.

Zidaneski
Zidaneski

WHOOOOOO!!!!!! FINALLY!!! My sister has been nagging me forever for this! I'm not sure if this game would do well on Xbox though, but it probably depends on when it comes out.

LordelX
LordelX

I'm not sure Rock Band will do well over here...small Japanese apartments + alot of noise + alot of eqipment and peoplewill be a hard sell. It should be tested in arcades first here...arcades are still alive and kicking over here...then based on that a home release should be considered. If they are going to bring it to consoles in Japan it should come to all consoles...on time. A decent Wii version would be the most important release, followed by PS2, PS3 and an Xbox360 version as a thank you to all the Japanese fans that have stuck with them.

funsohng
funsohng

put cant beat airman it will be awesome

TTouchdown51
TTouchdown51

God, I hope Maximum the Hormone is in it. Is "What's Up, People?" or "Zetsubou Billy" make the cut, I will literally kick someone in the face for this. Also, I'm predicting 90% of the soundtrack will feature songs and bands from Ouendan, as well as anime themes. If so, this will be the best game EVER.

dulun19
dulun19

Japan, a place where Karaoke is the norm.. i'm sure Rock band will do well there.. :) giving that they have JPN songs instead of English..that is

dmfreak
dmfreak

and then the japanese people will say, "it's a guitar freaks & drummania ripoff" once it's released there.

Meko_Gear_Solid
Meko_Gear_Solid

RockBand is awesome maybe my thai buddy will look at it now haha and i dont think they are guna have different songs.. maybe extra japanese songs for download but i still doupt it RB is rockin all ova da globe hehe screw a guitar hero it was dead after #2... Harmonix all the way baby...

Mercenary-X
Mercenary-X

heh, I hope that the J-Rock songs get put up in the other regions, just like the European ones did.

Fanible
Fanible

Oh, please let the Japanese songs be available for download for the rest of us... :D

roll450
roll450

Nice now, Harmonix needs to find good jappenese songs.

IpodHero176
IpodHero176

It would be great if the localization for Japan is DLC for the US and Europe. I hope L'Arc~en~Ciel are in it.:D

allmybase
allmybase

The news that Q Entertainment is working on Rock Band's Japanese localization isn't necessarily as surprising as it may sound. Mizuguchi and Alex Rigopolous of Harmonix have actually had a pretty lengthy work relationship which dates back to Rez's development, if I recall correctly, so this may just be the fruition of the duo's friendship. Having said that, I personally can't think of a better developer to give the game the right attention which it deserves in that market. As long as MTV is also backing the endeavor again to get the right names into that version of the game, too, I think this could do very well over there. As a side note, I'm among the people who would consider importing this version if the soundtrack is good. I don't know too much about J-Rock, but I imagine Rock Band: Japan would serve as a very good primer to it.

Ton77
Ton77

what isnt big in japan haha

musicaz70
musicaz70

Dear lord, just no Dir En Grey... I saw that band live and it was just bleh... Other than that this could turn out cool although I won't really see the effect because I own 360 RB.

Senor_Kami
Senor_Kami

"Even more interesting is the company that is partnering with Harmonix to ensure Rock Band's award-winning gameplay doesn't get lost in translation." Huh? Wouldn't the only difference be japanese songs and everything is written in japanese? This is cool, I wonder if it will eventually be setup where anyone can download a song from anywhere (assuming they also offer song downloads). The install base of US Rock Band users who want japanese songs is small, but it is there. Would it really cost them additional money to make that a possibility?