"Rock Revolution" is Konami's attempt at matching up against the "Rock Band" and "Guitar Hero" series. Now, let me start off by saying this - it is not ALL bad. It does have specific areas where the game does shine. However, the issues that plague this game throughout make it inferior to most other music games out there, especially in comparison to Harmonix's games. The first problem involves the game's storyline. Yes, it's a music game, and no story is expected really. However, "Rock Band" and "Guitar Hero" both have that realistic "world tour" feeling to them, where you ARE put in real situations that rockstars are constantly a part of. Maybe that means being in Seattle having to face up against a coffee-drunken crowd, with a demanded 5 star performance, with a failure penalty of losing a record deal. That's a bit of an exaggeration, but if you've played any of the games from those series, you know what I'm talking about. The point is that in every music game I've played in the past, there have been tons of elements that add to the overall realistic feeling of the music theme. Konami fails SO miserably on that scale, that it's almost unbelievable. Career mode is an absolute failure. I mean seriously - you start your career, pick a band name, get no customization options, are given a list of songs, play the songs, earn points, and the game is over. Pathetic. There are certain challenges that some of the performances have, which is pretty cool. For example, on one of the songs, you have to PASS it with a messed up note-chart. By this I mean that the notes that come at you are being over-charted. Say the note you're supposed to play is a green and yellow note chord. Rather than that appearing, you will have a green, red, and yellow chord coming towards you. If you play the red note along with it, the game doesn't register the play and you therefore miss a note. The notes that you aren't supposed to play are highlighted black, but sometimes your mind just can't keep up with it, and you miss. This was really difficult, as were the other challenges. That was definitely a good thing, but the fact that it was a requirement in career mode was just plain ridiculous. It's like Konami made this game as a way to completely destroy the feeling of actually being on stage. I think these challenges were a great idea, but they should've just been separate game modes, rather than required career mode performances. The bottom line is that Konami failed in terms of actual production.
The graphics in "Rock Revolution" are just average. The game manages a very solid, smooth frame-rate, and that's always a plus. The character models are okay, as are the instruments. Really, the game is just pretty average looking. However, the graphics do have one giant fault - the note-charts. It's not that the chart looks unrealistic, or stupid, but the view is HORRIBLE. Rather than the 75% angle that the "Rock Band" and "Guitar Hero" games have, "Rock Revolution" is directly above the note-chart, looking down on it. That may not seem like a big deal, but believe me, it is. It makes reading the charts impossible because there is absolutely no time for preparation as a note comes. You see NOTHING in advance, and it's all 2D. I mean come on...why would they do that? It's absolutely ridiculous! There is no reason for that at all. If you've ever played a music game, you also know that it's basically impossible to play without a helpful note-chart. So once again, I would like to congratulate Konami on a massive failure.
It may seem like the only thing I've done is bash the game. And frankly, I'm not going to sit here and say that I shouldn't be bashing it - because there really is so much more bad than there is good. The game had some real potential, but it almost looks like Konami worked really hard at making a broken game. Of course that's a joke, but if you play this game, you'll find it hard to deny. I haven't mentioned all the positives, though. First of all, the setlist is pretty good. The majority of the songs have been on previous music games, but they were certainly good choices. What was really bad about that, though, was that they are ALL covers. Every single solitary song on the game is a cover. Some of them were beautifully done. But others were not. Some of them sounded like they were honestly made as a joke, but they really weren't. I mean seriously, this isn't 2005 anymore guys! One thing that "Rock Revolution" did absolutely PERFECTLY with this game, however, is their created music recording studio. You can go into the studio and create your own songs. I know that "Guitar Hero: World Tour" did this as well, but this version is so much better and realistic. The instruments sound so smooth, and NOT robotic like from GH. You are given so many different options in terms of options and sounds, and it really worked well. I've created a few songs, and they sound honestly like they were created for REAL. You can't play these songs in the game, but you can save the songs and download them if you want. It really provides that "accomplishment" feeling, and I really commend the creators for being so successful there. It's very advanced, but easy to control at the same time. It's just too bad that Konami decided not to put any of that effort anywhere else in the game. The bottom-line is that this game has a few really good, distinct qualities, but aside from from the recording studio, they all have their negatives as well, and that's really just unacceptable in a world that is slowly being taken over by music games.
-Music fans who don't mind throwing away $4 to record some music in the studio...no one else.