Chandler, Arizona, United States

There's an old saying. If you don't want someone to join a crowd, you ask them, "If everyone were jumping off of a cliff, would you?" Well, I have. So my answer would be "Yes". True story.
Profile continued . . .

Why Would Somebody Hate Rock Band?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

this entry brought to you by the dodos, "when will you go"

I have a friend on Facebook who posted a status update complaining about Rock Band, the game. She said, "Because what the world needs is more people who think they can play a musical instrument without actually learning how to play and play well."

Rock Band has died down; its not a huge thing anymore, so I haven't heard people complaining in a while, but I used to hear this all the time when the game was huge. People would say things like, "why don't you just play a real instrument?"

My 10 year old daughter Celest bought that with her own money four months after we bought Rock Band 3

We listen to rock music here in the house, but Celest has never showed any interest in learning to play an instrument until she played the game. Also, we listen to rock music in the house house, but we don't listen to classic rock. My daughter knows who Queen is, not through us, but through Rock Band. It's not that we have anything against Queen, it's just that we don't own any of their music.

What's more is, I don't understand how the benefits of Rock Band could elude someone, even without ever playing it. When they announced the game and I was just looking at it in pictures I was excited for that very reason. At the time I owned a real guitar, but I never thought, "pff, I'd rather play my real guitar." Even without having played it, just looking at how the buttons were laid out, it made sense to me. And no, you can tell immediately that there is no one-to-one correlation between playing real guitar and playing the toy guitar-- there are only five buttons on the fake one, whereas a real guitar has frets all the way down, but the connection between playing popular rock music-- generally not the most technically demanding guitar music-- on the fake guitar and the real guitar seemed obvious.

And if a person plays the game and never ever picks up a real instrument, so what? Pretending to play with a fake plastic instrument gives you more of a sensation of the craft and artistry of playing a guitar than picking up a real guitar without knowing anything. I have owned a guitar. If you pick it up without knowing at all what to do, nothing happens. Nothing approaching any sort of sound that you would expect to hear from a guitar comes out. Even the pressure you're supposed to apply to a string doesn't make it sound anything like the tone you would expect. On the other hand, picking up a fake plastic guitar on Rock Band and learning to play the game on medium, going and picking up a real guitar actually made more sense to me than fooling around with my actual guitar knowing nothing. Again, it's not a one-to-one correlation. But, just as an example, Rock Band helps you learn to utilize hammer ons and hammer offs, which is a thing a friend tried to teach me, but makes much less sense in words than it does with a controller in hand and seeing a visual representation of exactly when and where you're supposed to do it.

Also, let me say one more thing:nobody says this about Madden. Nobody says "why would you play football on a video game when you can just play football in real life?" Playing football in real life is easier than just picking up a guitar! If you have another person, you can just throw a ball at them, and you can immediately approximate an actual football game. Right now. You can literally just go out and do it! But if you just pick up a guitar and try to play, the sounds that come out will sound nothing like rock music.

So why would someone hate on Rock Band, but not literally any other game that simulates something else?

with love from CRS @ 12:51 PM 


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