Rock Band 3

released on Oct 26, 2010

Rock Band 3 adds 83 new songs to the Rock Band library and for the first time supports a keyboard/keytar peripheral.

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All the zoomers were introduced to Roundabout from Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, but I was one of the cool kids who found out about it from Rock Band 3.

Doesn’t quite have the same magic as RB2 but this one introduced me to a lot of different songs. Never really got to experience the whole keyboard thing._.

The epitome of not just the Rock Band series, but the mainstream appeal of rhythm games in the Western regions. Rock Band 3 felt like the final ounce of creative evolution of the concept that is plastic-rocking with your homies while buzzed at a party. With the inclusion of a keyboard peripheral as well as harmony vocals in a mainline game, this meant you can have up to 7 people in one performance handle different parts of the game! That's kind of amazing.
This was also the first game in the series to have a semblance of a story, and it was surprisingly heartfelt and endearing, especially for one that didn't have any speaking roles. You just get to see the characters you made build a road to stardom from ground level! It was really cute.
There's also the "Pro Guitar" mode to speak of that can actually teach you chords and such for actual songs, but the concept was a bit too soon and ambitious, as it would be something perfected by a different company shortly after with "Rocksmith." Even so, it shows how genuine Harmonix was about providing a gateway for fans to actually learn instruments along with its real MIDI keyboard peripheral, and add-on for drums to more closely emulate actual drumming.
Where Guitar Hero drowned itself with its obnoxious nature, Rock Band managed to bow itself out maturely and sticking to what it did best, going so far as separating itself from EA shortly after release while still maintaining support and DLC for multiple years. I love Rock Band.

It was gonna be hard to top Rock Band 2, and 3 doesn't quite do it, but it's really saying something that this came as close as it did. Actually managed to introduce enough new content to keep the series fresh, and it was a solid "swan song" for the plastic instrument rhythm game.

This game would be a lost easier to recommend if a large portion of my constant enjoyment wasn't propelled by spending WAY TOO MUCH money on DLC. It's still a really great game without it, but I have the feeling it would wear out its welcome if I were limited only to the 80+ songs on its disc. That's not so bad though. I didn't have to continue playing this game for the rest of time. But that soundtrack is probably the most solid in the Rock Band OR Guitar Hero series. Rock Band 3 is still the pinnacle of instrument-based beat-matching games. Doing away with any required progression, Harmonix just lets you get instantly into playing the game how you want to. But if you do want a treadmill, there's plenty of progress bars, goals, and setlists to tread upon. It's certainly less of a play-through-it-once sort of game because all that stuff is side content. The real meat, the pleasure of manipulating buttons to rhythms and melodies is evergreen. The Rock Band series is the best way to experience this genre and Rock Band 3 offers the best set of features among those games.