Rock Band 4 Review Roundup

After years away, Rock Band makes its return.


Rock Band 4, the first entry in the series since 2010's Rock Band 3, launches this week for Xbox One and PS4. Ahead of its arrival, reviews for the music game have started to come online. To help you determine if the game is worth your time and money, we've collected some review scores and editor opinions.

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Read on to see what GameSpot and other critics had to say about the game. You can also check out the title's complete soundtrack here.

Rock Band 4 supports the plastic instruments you may already have under your bed or in your closet. They will work right out of the box on PS4, but Xbox One players will need to buy a special adapter. If you're starting fresh, you can buy the game and a guitar for $130 or a bundle that includes the game, a guitar, and drumset for $250.

Developer Harmonix also stresses that Rock Band 4 is the only new Rock Band game it plans to ship for PS4 and Xbox One. Don't expect Rock Band 5 next year, as Harmonix is treating Rock Band 4 as more of a platform that it will support for years to come with new features and more through updates. The first of these updates is coming in December and introduces Breakneck Variable Speed, among other things.

If you're partial to Activision's Guitar Hero series, the next entry in that franchise, Guitar Hero Live, arrives on October 20.

  • Game: Rock Band 4
  • Developer: Harmonix
  • Platforms: Xbox One, PlayStation 4
  • Release Date: October 6
  • Price: $60

GameSpot -- 7/10

"Rock Band 4 recaptures the unadulterated gratification that made the series such a hit half a decade ago, but mainly because it's a relatively unchanged, repackaged Rock Band 2. A lack of content and general stagnation hold this particular iteration of Rock Band back, but new ideas like Freestyle Solos genuinely enhance the core experience, which remains a sincere and joyful celebration of music." - Scott Butterworth [Full review]

IGN -- 8.8/10

"The track list that comes on the Rock Band 4 disc is a little light on memorable songs, but thanks to admirable backward compatibility with a huge DLC catalog, Rock Band 4 remains every bit the magical cooperative gaming experience the series has always been. Getting a band together in the living room to rock out creates some incredible moments of musical joy. On top of that, a new career mode injects some fun personality and decision-making, while solos let you express yourself mid-song without penalty. Rock Band still fulfills its potential to make me feel like a superstar musician and, like 65-year-old Bruce Springsteen still doing killer three-hour shows , proves that it's still got 'it.'" - Ryan Mccaffrey [Full review]

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Game Informer -- 8.75/10

"In this year's music-game scene, Rock Band 4 offers tried-and-true polish, and an impressive opportunity for backward compatibility. Whether you're importing a back catalog or not, the new title stands on its own with smart music selections, and skill-based gameplay refined over years of experimentation. After a few years away, I'd almost forgotten how fun the Rock Band experience can be." - Matt Miller [Full review]

Eurogamer -- Recommended

"When everything clicks into focus, it's an exhilarating experience that increases your enjoyment of favorite songs by beaming you inside them. The second coming of Rock Band and Guitar Hero might not be able to achieve the rocketing success of their debuts, but--on this evidence, at least--Rock Band 4 makes it possible to relive past glories while creating equally vivid new ones. It's a remarkable achievement." - Graeme Virtue [Full review]

Ars Technica

"If you ever had a good time with a previous Rock Band game, buy it and remember what you've been missing." - Kyle Orland [Full review]

Forbes -- 9/10

"Rock Band 4 may have lost a few features (some temporarily, some permanently) in its transition to Xbox One and PlayStation 4, but the core gameplay is dramatically improved by allowing us to be more expressive, while preserving the older mechanics for those resistant to change. It's player choice at its finest, and a welcome return to fake plastic rocking." - Jason Evangelho [Full review]

The products discussed here were independently chosen by our editors. GameSpot may get a share of the revenue if you buy anything featured on our site.

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