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Have you guys seen the new Rocksmith?

posted Nov 06, 2013 15:34:51 by MichaelWamback
Just saw that a new version of the Rocksmith software is out, and it looks absolutely amazing.

A lot of the reason I got back into music was those video games. I had played around with guitar in my teens and 20's, then life got in the way. Fast forward about 15 years, and I found myself playing the Guitar Hero game at a party one night. It was fun, so I bought some of those games and we had a good time playing them. After a bit, I realized how much I missed my guitar, so I bought a real one. Then Rocksmith came out, and it really got me going. Made practicing fun.

This 2014 version has some pretty amazing looking features. They claim that they can hand a guitar to someone who has never played a chord, and they will be playing in 60 days if they only play the game 1 hour a day.

I have to say, I think it may be something that could put a lot of guitar teachers out of business. It also seems like Epiphone/Gibson is one of the big partners in this with Ubisoft.

Here's the link to the site. Check it out if you haven't seen it.

http://rocksmith.ubi.com/rocksmith/en-US/home/index.aspx
The two most important things to remember in life: "The only time it's acceptable to work with amateurs is if you are making porn." "If you want to work with clowns, join a circus."
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13 replies
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TelepathicTrafic said Nov 09, 2013 15:32:43
Interesting Michael, I have a similar story. I was a long time player or Rockband, bought tons of extra songs, the Beatles pack. Set up with mic stand to accompany the guitar parts too hehe! (On a side note, Rockband WILL help you to improve your singing I found)

Fast forward, I bought an Acoustic EJ-200 after not playing much for about 6-7 years, and then the Rockbanding kinda faded away as I was more interested in learning cover songs etc ... also kids arrived and cut into the free time.

ANYWAY.

I picked up Rocksmith 2014 a few days after release, and its great. Much better than the previous version (It made you tune your guitar all the time). I really like playing it, a great way to practice and learn songs. I wish it had more tunes that I wanted to learn, but there is value in learning songs that are outside of ones comfort zone.

I don't know that it could replace guitar teachers any more than the vast array of YouTube videos, but man ... it can teach you a hell of a lot of things. Lots of practice exercises etc ...

The thing I don't like about it, and maybe I haven't explored it to its fullest, is that the better the player you are, the more frustrating it is to start a new song, as it moves the difficulty up in intensity a bit slow. For example, the it will show a root note for a G Chord, but not the whole chord until you reach a certain level % ... I think it would be easier to give me the chord up front ... not sure if that makes sense ... or tell us if the solo is based on a major or minor scale to give us a heads up ... altho I'm sure better players can figure that out easy ...

I'm willing to bet it COULD teach someone to play decent in 60 days if they committed.
"I am for drink and the company of questionable women ... may your day hold equal favor!"
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MichaelWamback said Nov 10, 2013 01:44:23
My understanding from their website was that you can pre-set the difficulty before starting a song. I know the AI still adjusts to your learning curve, simplifying if you fall behind and adding complexity as you advance. I think that's particularly brilliant.

I really want to buy the new one, but will have to add it to the wish list for now. I have a couple of other things that I want first, and only a limited amount of disposable income at the moment. It definitely looks to have advanced from the first software (I hate to call it a "game", since it's much more than that), so thanks for confirming that.

I definitely see a copy in my future :)
The two most important things to remember in life: "The only time it's acceptable to work with amateurs is if you are making porn." "If you want to work with clowns, join a circus."
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TelepathicTrafic said Nov 10, 2013 12:56:05
I played it yesterday for 2 hrs ... wife and kids were out !!! Fun stuff ....

Put it on the Xmas list ...
"I am for drink and the company of questionable women ... may your day hold equal favor!"
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stanton.kramer said Dec 13, 2013 15:31:51
My daughter bought this program and loves it. However, she was *very* good at Guitar Hero, so this is her kind of thing. She's had it for about a month. It is worth noting at this point that she is a VERY accomplished flutist, so guitar is not her first instrument.

Having said that, she plays this like a game and is very happy with it. I bought her an Orange amp and she doesn't even use it. HOWEVER...ROCKSMITH IS a ***GAME***. Why do I say this????

She can put her fingers down as the game teaches her, but she seems to totally ignore the musicality and nuances involved in MAKING MUSIC. I have asked her what notes she was playing and she had no idea. This is a kid who reads music WELL, has had a couple years of music theory... but is oblivious to the actual notes being played. She is playing "position only" as the game teaches her. IOW, she is playing Guitar Hero with a real guitar.

My personal experience with the program tells me that it is not for me. I have Guitar Pro(6) which has many of the practice features as RS, but provides (IMO) more of a musical environment. I am a bit visually slow so the game thing isn't my bag. I can read music and prefer reading real music and using tabs as a position REFERENCE. Besides, there are a bazillion FREE Guitar Pro charts out there while FREE content on RS is limited.

Dismounting soap box.
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WayneJohnson said Dec 24, 2013 00:03:04
I got rock Smith for my birthday last week and I think it is great.

My biggest issue as a live player is staring at the fret board and with rocksmith you cant do that.

Both my kids have gad a go and enjoyed it.

Ithink it is a great game that does get you playing a real guitar!

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MichaelWamback said Dec 24, 2013 16:36:24
I just ordered a copy - didn't realize that they had a PC version. That's awesome, since the Mrs. watches TV in the evenings and I usually practice sitting next to my computer. So that's pretty exciting. I have the original Rocksmith (which got me started on playing a real guitar again.) I've heard that there are a lot of big improvements in the new version.

What's cool is that I should be able to install it on a laptop (planning on upgrading to a new on in the new year.) When I go to work, I won't have to take anything but the guitar and I can just plug it into the computer when I want to practice on breaks.

Will let you guys know how I make out with that version.
The two most important things to remember in life: "The only time it's acceptable to work with amateurs is if you are making porn." "If you want to work with clowns, join a circus."
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stanton.kramer said Dec 25, 2013 23:41:07
TT said:
I don't know that it could replace guitar teachers any more than the vast array of YouTube videos, but man ... it can teach you a hell of a lot of things. Lots of practice exercises etc ...


Fast forward... My daughter has had RS2014 for about 6 weeks now and just said to me "Dad, I think I need real guitar lessons". She is right. She can play the songs but plays fairly robotically. There is absence of phrasing and tone in her playing and she lacks fluidity in her fingers. It's not that she doesn't know what these things are as she plays flute at a professional level. They're just missing from her guitar playing. Perhaps the real guitar lessons can help her clean up what she's learned in Rocksmith.

I'll be interested to know how y'all are progessing.
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WayneJohnson said Dec 26, 2013 00:48:39
Its getting me to stop staring at the fret board!
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MichaelWamback said Jan 06, 2014 06:42:30
Got the new Rocksmith at last, for the PC! Since I play in the same room as my computer, figured it made the most sense.

Had a couple of crashes, and Ubisoft's servers don't seem to be working - but got it installed without too much problem. I must say, it's been a fun couple of hours.

Not going to make you happy if you are into anything other than rock or metal - but I guess the title is Rocksmith for a reason.

I have the first version for the XBox, and I must say the new version shows significant improvement. It's not just a version 1.2 with some new songs. They have really redesigned a lot of it.

It's nice not having to retune your guitar all the time before you can replay a song. The riff repeater is much improved where you can set a start and end point in a song, then set the speed at which you want it to play and how many notes you want (from just a few to all of them.) It's almost like when you slowed down a record to try and figure out what the guy was playing, only better.

I also like the way it begins to fade out sections of songs that you have down until they disappear altogether. It also will add notes as you get one section down better but simplify the sections you are struggling with.

Still takes me a little while to get comfortable with the tabs, but I think it's going to be a lot of fun to mess around with.
The two most important things to remember in life: "The only time it's acceptable to work with amateurs is if you are making porn." "If you want to work with clowns, join a circus."
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stanton.kramer said Jan 06, 2014 14:24:59
Since you reopened the subject.... My daughter has had this now for a couple months. Played for hours and hours at the beginning. One of her main complaints is the limited loaded songs. She says she is having difficulty finding songs for Mac. Is this a problem or does she just not know where to look. she has now taken her first "real" lesson and will take more. It will be interesting to see how much interest remains in RS for her.


For me, I'm sticking with Guitar Pro 6. I can actually print out the music which could be lead, guitar 2, drums, bass or other voices. Guitar Pro doesn't have the "game-face" that RS does but I think isn't dependent of learning to read "flying tabs".

YMMV
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MichaelWamback said Jan 06, 2014 16:15:39
I think the game aspect of Rocksmith is one of it's strengths. To get a kid to sit for hours and practice chords is a bit boring - but when you get to kill zombies by playing the right chord it becomes a lot more fun. And to be honest, as a very new guitar player it really got me going.

In fact, the whole video game thing is what got me back into music.

I had a guitar when I was in my early 20's. Could play a few chords but never really got into it. Ended up giving it to a friend when I moved to LA since I didn't have room to bring it with me. (It was an American Strat - so now I'm kicking myself a bit.)

Year went by, with no interest in the guitar. Then along came Rockband.

Picked up that game for the PS3 and the Mrs. and I had a blast messing around with those plastic guitars. Great fun at parties and all that kind of stuff. Even built our Halloween theme around the game one year. But after playing it for a few years, I realized I wanted a bit more and started considering picking up the guitar again.

Bought my first Epiphone (which I still love) from some kid in a dark alley for $200. Began messing around with it, learning a few chords. Then Rocksmith came out and I bought a copy.

I found the exercises in the game helpful, and it made practicing fun. I even managed to learn to play a couple of songs - not perfectly but enough that I could pop the video on youtube and play along with the band. That's what got me hooked.

I think the game can only take you so far, but I think that anything that can inspire someone to pick up an instrument with an emphasis on having fun with it is good. There may well come a time where a beginner will outgrow it - but that's a good thing. So I definitely applaud Ubisoft for making the effort to go beyond the plastic guitars. And I think the new version is a big improvement - enough to justify the cost.

As for songs - I have a PC so can't elaborate on Mac. I know for the PC you can download the old 2012 version of the game and import the songs into the new version. Not sure how, but will probably do that at some point. They also tend to constantly release new content for these games that you can download and install.
The two most important things to remember in life: "The only time it's acceptable to work with amateurs is if you are making porn." "If you want to work with clowns, join a circus."
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stanton.kramer said Jan 06, 2014 16:45:32
I think the game can only take you so far, but I think that anything that can inspire someone to pick up an instrument with an emphasis on having fun with it is good. There may well come a time where a beginner will outgrow it - but that's a good thing.


Agreed. I think the best approach to utilizing RS is in addition to an in-person coach or teacher. RS definitely can put fun into picking up a guitar. But while learning material it is VERY important to learn to be MUSICAL, not just technical... unless you just don't care. I know that I am still trying to figure out how to pick efficiently or bend notes or develop a musical vibrato. If you're new to music you DEFINITELY need a very good musical coach. Music is a lot more than just playing notes and chords.

As a footnote, I find it quite interesting how societally FUN has become our main motivator rather than artistic accomplishment/satisfaction. Ok... It is what it is. I can see from the numbers in our school music programs that kids today would rather go home and play video games (or participate in sports) rather than learn to play a musical instrument. Que pena.


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Adid said Jan 15, 2014 12:00:49
Rocksmith is great!

I just got it yesterday, played all evening!

Just if you want some more fun, go here: http://forums.smithyanvil.com/index.php

Register yourself, there are many songs being made for RS14
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