Ubisoft unveils guitar game Rocksmith

New rhythm game promises compatibility with most electric guitars; Rolling Stones, David Bowie, and Nirvana confirmed for setlist.

It's been a tough stretch for the rhythm genre. After being sold off by former parent Viacom, Rock Band developer Harmonix laid off 15 percent of its staff. Meanwhile, rival rhythm publisher Activision completely disbanded its Guitar Hero business unit, taking the DJ Hero franchise with it. Undaunted, Ubisoft has decided to enter the genre.

Ubisoft isn't afraid of entering the genre. Image credit: The Hollywood Reporter.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Ubisoft will unleash Rocksmith for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Wii this September. The game will come with 45 songs from bands like the Rolling Stones, the Animals, David Bowie, and Nirvana. According to the report, Rocksmith will sport songs not available in Rock Band or Guitar Hero games.

Rocksmith was developed with realism in mind, according to The Reporter. In the game, players will strum along on actual strings. Ubisoft is betting that the game can avoid the fate of Guitar Hero because its players won't soon grow tired of learning how to play an actual guitar. The game will come with an input jack that is compatible with "most electric guitars" for play on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, but not the Wii.

Additionally, the report states that Ubisoft is in talks with guitar maker juggernaut Gibson and others to manufacture a $200 edition of the game that bundles an actual guitar with a copy of the game.

More specific details on Rocksmith are not yet available, as Ubisoft has yet to formally announce the game. However, the game's lone screenshot (above) shows that the game's note highway will apparently scroll horizontally, as opposed to the vertically designed Rock Band and Guitar Hero note charts.

Ubisoft has enjoyed great success in the music game genre lately. Its latest dancing game--Just Dance 2--has gone quintuple platinum, selling 5 million copies worldwide since debuting in October 2010.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

Discussion

270 comments
shooters125
shooters125

@kwanzudood You do realize this is Ubisoft's first attempt in the guitar type games right? The other two guitar series are now dead and Ubisoft is trying to go in unchallenged. So none of this is milking or last ditched effort stuff. Actually, it's quite the opposite seeing as Ubisoft is going in fresh and has never done any of this guitar genre.

Justforfun44
Justforfun44

As a guitar player and a gamer I am intrigued. It would be fun to connect my Gibson Les Paul to my Xbox 360. If I can learn a new tune or two that would be good too. I am still hopeful that Rocksmith will be good. I can't wait to see game play in action. For serious guitar lessons you should check out Learn & Master Guitar course on DVD because it really works.

annoyingdevil
annoyingdevil

give us prince of persia insead of this crap ubisoft are just gona fail hard like they are on there dancing games

wyan_
wyan_

@Sk8rlink We are like minded, because that's exactly what I do son. I learn by ear and am quite good at it. It's also pretty challenging in itself, but sometimes it would be nice if there was a game or software that could do this accurately and with any song. That's all.

stEElyDaN909
stEElyDaN909

i MAY get it, if it does indeed support the electric guitar I already have. Rockband 3 was a step in the right direction, but being able to play with my own instruments instead of buying expensive peripherals is something the music genre should have done long ago. IMHO, I think it might be too little, too late.

conkerton
conkerton

This game is like taking crystal energy and ginko instead of medicine for cancer. Can it work? It may work beautifully or blow up in their face. I am very intrigued to see how the "teaching" portion of the game plays out though. Keep playing with fire Ubisoft you might have found some gold.

Sk8rlink
Sk8rlink

@wyan_ if you really wanna learn a song on guitar, or actually any instrument, here is nothing better than just sitting down with a good pair of headphones and just listening over and over, so that you can find the notes yourself, and even better if you know how to write music, transcribe it, that way you can even add your own solos and stuff, this is much better than tabs, and although much harder, it is prportionally satisfying...PEACE

kwanzudood
kwanzudood

Of course, it took them this long to release a peripheral that would work with actual electric guitars, which should have been a no-brainer from the beginning. They wanted to milk customers with toy peripherals for as long as they could, and now that sales are slipping, they decided to allow actual guitars as a last-ditch effort to get a few more sales.

wyan_
wyan_

If only they could come up with a guitar game that could decode (for lack of a better word) any song and teach it, THEN I would buy.

jiggidyjiggidy
jiggidyjiggidy

@Marasca2 good point!! but it's gonna be cool to see how the guitar gaming experience changes now that real guitars are incorporated. maybe even more posers will jump in and turn musicianship into gaming... but then we'll see what happens...

Kingslayer513
Kingslayer513

Ugh... Just promise to include some actual Metal songs and I'll think about it. No more "Pop" songs that take no real talent to play.

cornerback3
cornerback3

Ubisoft is stepping on thin ice with this decision. We'll see what happens

Wylen0
Wylen0

Ok ubisoft lets see what you got, i will keep my eye on it for now

the_punkface
the_punkface

45 songs? Teach real guitars? not for wii? thats the best you can do, Ubisoft? And im pretty sure all of Nirvanas on RB. not so origional, huh?

hitechgraphs
hitechgraphs

A video game compatible with a real electric guitar?Certainly sound interesting.Had to wait and see if works.

12534554
12534554

sounds interesting, and ill admit i like the idea of playing real guitar in the game after i tried it out on rock band 3 (even though I suck big time at it). I'll wait until i see the setlist first before i consider it though

oskuuu
oskuuu

so this will teach me how to play real guitar? sounds good, but we'll see...

kavadias1981
kavadias1981

I can't work out which audience this game is targeting. Professional guitarists is my only guess but why would they need this when they can already play without it. The new rock kiddy era has passed now, thats a no. Gamers are bored of it. Casuals are bored of it. The whole idea just seems too risky to me.

mrcookie44
mrcookie44

If this goes well, I hope for combatability with bass-guitars as well!

EzekyleAbadon
EzekyleAbadon

"most electric guitars". Hmmm, if it supports Ibanez I might just try it...

thenephariouson
thenephariouson

Could have better utilised all that development time and $$$, as im fairly sure an all new R6 would recieve a warmer welcome.

doni107
doni107

I'm hoping that it's just a disc and an aux to usb cable, if so the price might not be so bad, provided that you actually have a guitar.

emperorzhang66
emperorzhang66

better not just be really easy pop songs. cacophony is what we want :) i may buy this if this is what its like, never was good at guitar hero :) I am skeptical, it may bring around a new crowd of idiots who think they can play. Still, hope 1 of my many guitars works :D

shadowysea07
shadowysea07

they have guts i'll give them that but really seems like a stupid idea considering not everyone wants to learn how to play a guitar let alone learn from a video game. i don't see this being profitable especially if its 200+ for it. for that price i can get a ds xbox or wii or for a little more you can get a ps3 or 3ds.

o0shred_demon0o
o0shred_demon0o

Game seems too much like a glorified tab book to me. But if ubisoft can promise content for intemediate to advanced guitar players and not just pray on the beginners then i may be less sceptical.

wwlettsome
wwlettsome

Hmmm, maybe if they wait long enough to release it there will be some interest due to lack of competition. Otherwise this will be another item to add to the scrapheap of music games now that the fad is over.

Decrate
Decrate

omg when are these games going to die! enough with all the useless plastic peripherals filling up living rooms, like a plastic dj set, plastic band set, plastic skateboard, plastic guns to hold a controller, etc.

foxrock66
foxrock66

As an actual performing guitarist, I'm interested to play this, just to see how well they did with the idea... But I forsee a bust

gregpfunk
gregpfunk

This sucks, it's just another game that I will have gathering dust and taking up space in my store. Thanks a lot Ubisoft, you are about ready to regret this terrible decision.

timewarp411
timewarp411

I can hook up my own guitar!? Count me in. But please don't screw with the actual guitar playing experience or it's just going to be another one of those damn 'guitar' games I don't buy.

maven_zer09
maven_zer09

I have never bought a GH or Rock Band, but if I can connect my own Ibanez electric guitar to this game, then count me interested. if they don't dumb the actual experience of playing guitar, which is far more entertaining and REWARDING that matching a few buttons with on screen, they may have something that may find its way into some people who really play instruments.

Lexxurious
Lexxurious

They can have success but i recommend that they dont flood the market like the others did.

nintendoman562
nintendoman562

Hmm, hopefully the notes are accurate cause I think this could be fun to play with my Les Paul :D

SnuffDaddyNZ
SnuffDaddyNZ

"Rocksmith will sport songs not available in Rock Band or Guitar Hero games." ^^^ make or break right there.

Marasca2
Marasca2

@jiggidyjiggidy lol, i thought that real guitarrists played guitar instead of playing guitar games, and even though this is played with a real guitar, it's still a game

dihara
dihara

This might actually be good! been wanting to play a guitar hero-type game with my electric guitar....will be great for actual guitarists like myself!

CRS98
CRS98

Will it have death metal?

DAFTArticuno
DAFTArticuno

I might try this game out, but Rocksmith? Could use a better name... just my opinion...

-Shadowbinded-
-Shadowbinded-

Geez, people don't believe in second chances. All I read are comments on how the music genre is dead and, personally, I believe that it was the guitars that killed the games. Guitar Hero's drum set was a very accurate thing, whereas both of Guitar Hero's and Rockband's guitars were just lame attempts at entertainment. Instad of simply declaring the genre dead, I suppose I'll give a more constructive comment: I think it's a good approach, the fact that they're going to use actual strings, but they could introduce a bigger roster of songs and add the drum set, as well. Let's see how this turns out :)

-Shadowbinded-
-Shadowbinded-

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

Console_Gamer93
Console_Gamer93

Finally. I hated buying plastic guitars for RB/GH. Always wanted to just plug in my electric guitar and play the songs without looking at (sometimes inaccurate) tabs on the internet. I'm sold if the setlist is any good.

jiggidyjiggidy
jiggidyjiggidy

BOOM facebook.com/rocksmithgame - waiting for them to upload videos and junk cuz that's all they do is promo on facebook and nowhere else now -- LET'S SLAY GUITAR HERO AND SHOW THEM HOW REAL GUITARISTS DOOOOOO!

so_hai
so_hai

No one makes run of the mill software as well as Ubisoft - perfect for this genre.