Rock Band keyboard verdict

Well, I’ve had the Rock Band 3 MIDI keyboard adapter for a while now and have really enjoyed it. I still play on easy in most cases, but I sometimes turn up the sound on the keyboard to hear what I’m actually playing. You’re generally just doing some easy harmonizing on easy mode, but it’s great fun. The only drawback I’ve seen is that I probably have some really bad finger placement and don’t know really know where best to put my fingers. I try to play with the right hand, since you’re only playing the right-hand part of the songs. In other Rock Band peripheral news, they’re discontinuing the really real guitar controller, so buy one at Best Buy if you were planning to.  An alternative would be the cheaper, somewhat realistic 100 button guitar.  The music game genre is generally dying out, it seems.  If you wanted a game of that kind, you probably already have it…so what’s the point in another? It was fun while it lasted and at least I have this stuff to learn from.

Programming by face and Ken Jennings

Couple o’ things…

Ken Jennings (one of the former Jeopardy! champions) has a blog.  He even has a FAQ.  People sometimes ask him to pay off their student loans.  His response:

So, what about paying off my student loans?
Get a job, hippie!

Also, has a facial recognition API that uses facebook.  This dude used it to make an automatic DJ program.

Rock Band 3 MIDI keyboard

My MIDI keyboard adapter for Rock Band 3 arrived yesterday, so we tried it out with my cousin who’s visiting and knows how to play some keyboards.  (I don’t know how to play myself, but hope to learn something with this.)  We brought my Yamaha keyboard down to the living room…it’s getting crowded down there.  Playing keyboards in the game is hard as you have no point of reference for your fingers.  I might need to put some colored stickers on the keys or some kinda bumpy thing so that my fingers know the current position without looking.  The MIDI adapter can be clipped to your belt and has an overdrive button on the corner that I guess you could push if you weren’t too busy trying to find the keys.  There are a bunch of tutorials in the game that I plan to go through when I have a chance.  We just jumped into pro keyboard easy mode and were able to at least find some of the notes.  You’re playing the right-hand part of songs only.  A couple of problems with keyboard mode are that they couldn’t fit the span of the keyboard on the display so they have to shift it over sometimes, making you lose your place.  Also, if you try to play keyboard with 2 guitars, it goes into a lame “all instruments mode” that doesn’t score vocals.  Overall though, I think it’s great that they made the idea of learning an instrument a fun thing.

Rock Band 3

Rock Band 3 arrived and we got to try it out.  If you only have the old Rock Band instruments, it’s pretty much just more of the same with a better interface.  As fun as ever, though.  The big new thing is more realistic/expensive instruments and 7 player support (with 3 singers).  I ordered the MIDI controller for the keyboard, but it doesn’t come out until the end of the month.  I’m hoping to actually learn a bit of keyboard when it comes to it.  We tried a bit of online play with strangers and the lack of communication was frustrating.  We saw a pretty good keyboard player online.   I had fun outfitting my character with a colonel hat and a monocle.  I imported the songs from our other Rock Band games, so we have a lot of choice.  You can apparently only rate songs in cases where you don’t like them.  Hopefully they’ll show up less often.  (I was hoping for a delete function.)  They even threw in some Spanish songs, which was pretty cool.  And it’s got Roxette, Kelly!  🙂  So come over to our house and play some Rock Band.