I enjoyed Rock Band far more than I enjoyed Guitar Hero III last year, so I was very excited about Rock Band 2. Through a stroke of luck and some good friends *cough*Suff0catisfullofawesome*cough* I was able to get a copy for free. I started out pretty excited and as I got deeper into the game, suffered a couple of let downs.
Things like the freedom of single player tours were a welcome change, and I thought the added challenges were pretty cool. However, I was pretty disappointed that the character customization was pretty much just a rehash of the previous Rock Band, with a few new things tacked on for good measure. This was extremely disappointing, especially in light of GH: WT's super crazy customization interface. I know the game is supposed to concentrate expressly on the music, however it almost seems as if Harmonix didn't consider customization as an important part of the game play--which it is. Everyone wants to make a rock star as close to themselves (or Chuck Norris) as possible, and limiting that capacity for players will also limit the amount of enjoyment they get out of the game.
The second disappointment was the music selection. This time around, the songs were truly a mixed bag, with some great choices like Cheap Trick and some questionable ones like Bob Dylan (which probably should have been offered as DLC instead). I initially thought it would be stupid to import the original Rock Band songs when I could simply switch to the other disc, however the hit-or-miss song selection in the second game had me yearning to play something more fun and familiar.
So while Rock Band 2 took a couple of steps forward with the general gameplay, I feel like Guitar Hero's detailed character and instrument customization paired with its impressive track list just might give it the edge this time around.
Which one will you be playing this year?