Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Rock Band 3's Debut Game-Play Hours

Coffee Beans:
     Rock Band 3 was released on October 26, 2010 in North America, with two different ways to obtain the game.  One way was to buy the software version only of Rock Band 3, which allowed players to use any existing guitar, bass, and drum peripherals they owned, as well as the microphone peripheral for solo vocals or three-part vocal harmony; to play the game by themselves or with others.
     Rock Band 3 was also offered for sale in a bundle, with a new wireless keyboard controller peripheral that was designed for the game.

     Rock Band 3 was a multi-console release, being released on the PlayStation 3, Wii, and Xbox 360.  It was also released for the Nintendo DS system as well.
     The game was developed by Harmonix, and Backbone Entertainment; and it was published by MTV Games and distributed by Electronic Arts.
     Rock Band 3 received a "Teen" rating from the ESRB, with "Mild Lyrics, Mild Suggestive Themes, Use of Alcohol" being listed as content for parents to be aware of.
     The game-play hours shown and reported in this post are for the Wii system only.

     How many hours have Wii owners reported rocking out with Rock Band 3 since it released?  Let's take a look!

Hours shown are for the United States of America, not world-wide.

Approx. Number of Players Reporting Data:
     Rock Band 3 has 3,734 Wii owners reporting their game-play hours for its hours debut on the Nintendo Channel.

Average & Total Game-Play Hours:
     Rock Band 3 has 55,031 Total Hours of game-play reported for its debut, with an average of 14 Hours 44 Minutes "Per person" reporting data.
     Rock Band 3's average play-time per session is just over 2 Hours 19 Minutes.

Sale Ranks & Advertised Prices:
     Rock Band 3's software only sale rank is #204, and it is on sale for $29.99.
     Rock Band 3's bundle sale rank is #1,367, and it is selling for $114.54.
     (Sale ranks and advertised prices recorded around 12:45AM on 1-12-11.)

Review Score Averages:
     Rock Band 3's review score average is 90.67%, based on 6 "professional" reviews on

     Rock Band 3 has two separate sets of customer review scores on  One set is for the software only version of the game, the other set of customer reviews are for the Rock Band 3 Wireless Keyboard and Software bundle.
     The software only version has about a 3.5 out of 5 Stars rating, based on 25 customer reviews.
     Based on a 100% review scale, the 25 customer reviews for this version of Rock Band 3 are equivalent to a 72% review score average.
     The Rock Band 3 Wireless Keyboard bundle has what appears to be a 5 out of 5 Stars rating, based on just 8 customer reviews.
     Based on a 100% review scale, this Rock Band 3 bundle's review score comes out to a 97.50% based on the 8 customer reviews.
     You can see the customer review score breakdowns for both versions in the image below:
Click to enlarge
     (Review score averages recorded around 12:45AM on 1-12-11.)

Filtered Thoughts:
     I played Rock Band 3 briefly on New Year's Eve this last year, but nobody that I was playing with actually used the wireless keyboard controller, even though it was available.  We all just stuck with the guitar, bass, drums, and the vocals.
     I showed data for The Beatles: Rock Band's game-play hours as reported just 48 days after it released in 2009. The Beatles: Rock Band had 91,455 Total Hours of game-play reported in just 48 days.  Rock Band 3's game-play hours, as shown in this report, have taken 77 days after release to debut; and Rock Band 3 has 36,424 fewer "Total Hours" reported, compared to The Beatles: Rock Band's hours at just 48 days after release.
     In short, Rock Band 3 took 77 days from its release for game-play hours to debut on the Nintendo Channel, compared to fewer than 50 days for The Beatles: Rock Band's game-play hours to debut.

     On reviews, I think it's interesting looking at the Rock Band 3 customer reviews, and seeing how people that purchased the Wireless Keyboard Bundle rated the game higher overall, compared to the people that purchased just the standalone software version.
     In regards to sales of the game, I remember reading throughout the last year how sales for music games like the Rock Band series had slumped, compared to previous releases.  I think that the current reported game-play data for Rock Band 3, probably helps to confirm those reports even more.  I don't know if the slumping sales will result in a "restructuring" of the way music games are released, or if companies will just continue with yearly sequels.

     Even though the game-play hours for Rock Band 3 took longer than I expected to debut, and even though sales apparently weren't very well for Rock Band 3 compared to past games in the series, I was actually glad to see the developers attempt something new, by introducing the wireless keyboard.
     Hopefully the sales can continue at a steady pace for Rock Band 3, and the developers will be encouraged to try new ideas in future games as well.

     Have any of you played Rock Band 3, with the wireless keyboard controller?  If so, do you think the wireless keyboard controller helps to add a lot to the game-play, and replay value of the game?
     If you haven't played Rock Band 3, but you enjoy the music game genre, what is your favorite game in the genre?

If you are interested in Rock Band 3, you can click on the links to different versions of the game on below:



  1. You might know the answer right off, but how are sales of the latest Guitar Hero? Better or worse than RockBand 3?

    I suppose the whole genre could just be dying and the audience is moving over to dance games, which Harmonix luckily (lucky for them, I mean) has a hand in. Plus, no expensive peripherals (well, just the once for Kinect).

  2. I don't know the exact numbers, but from what I've read, both games have done a lot less than the previous games.

    It's interesting you mention the audience moving over to dance games, because I remember how the Dance Dance Revolution games use to sell like crazy...then they kind of died off, but are still made. Perhaps it's just another cycle of people giving those type of games a try again, because Ubisoft hit the goldmine with Just Dance in 2009, and now with Just Dance 2 and Just Dance Kids and Michael Jackson: The Experience...

    Thanks for the question and comment!


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