The lights are on
Note: I accidentally posted this review in the wii section.
Rock Band 3 is without a doubt the worst in the series. There is absolutely no challenge (except for the "pro" mode, which I'll get to in a bit). The song selection suffers the same fate as Guitar Hero World Tour: It's too spread out to accommodate the new instruments. No songs stand out, they all just blend into one boring setlist (with the exception of a couple of classics). Unlike Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock, RB3 is entirely mundane. There's no epic finale, no setpieces that stand out. There just seems to be no emotion in the game. That's the best way to describe it.The one addition to Rock Band 3 that does work well is the keyboard. It is fun to use, and songs such as Bohemian Rhapsody work much better on it than "playing" the piano with guitar in GHWOR. As a piano player myself, it was fun to jump right into pro mode and already know how to play it. However, the steep $80 entry price will discourage most players who haven't picked up a keyboard before, and I've found after playing with my friends that it's even less popular to use than the bass.Speaking of playing with friends, I've found the guitar hero series, especially in recent years, to be much better at this. You STILL can't play with any combination of instruments, forcing the odd man out to play an instrument they don't want to instead of fun sessions in GHWOR with 4 people on guitar. You still have to go through a lot of menus, and while they have been improved, it's not good for a party scenario when you just want to turn the game on and play.Now on to the pro mode. While it worked alright when I played it in the store (they brought out some of the other pro instruments at best buy for people to try), buying all of them will set you back more than $250, assuming you already own the drums. Want the "real" pro guitar, the Squire? Prepare to pay at least $300 for that alone. They haven't announced the price yet, but that's the most valid guess based on retailer slips and other rumors.Wondering why this game gets a 90 metascore, not to mention a 9.25 from gameinformer? Because the reviewers didn't have to pay for the instruments. I guarantee that very few people are going to pay that much money just to get the full experience out of ONE game. And they don't even work in any other mode!
TL:DR version: Rock Band 3 is the most disappointing in the series. Other than the one shining addition of the keyboard, it's a bland and uninspired sequel that requires a huge investment to get any more enjoyment out of. My advice? Stick with Rock Band 2. The DLC is backwards compatible, and you're better off saving your money for the dozens of other better games coming out soon.
Calm yourself man! You don't have to invest in the pro instruments and sets. Its a choice that people make. Its not a game where if you have the original peripherals you can't play the game without buying new ones! Plus, I doubt the gameplay is SO CRAPPY to get a 5.25. Seriously, its not like the game punches you in the face every time you miss a note.