Whoa, look at this Rock Band 3 Fender Mustang Pro guitar and keyboard. In the game's new "pro mode," you'll have to press small buttons on the guitar's fretboard where the real notes would be to win the game. Along with that will be a new 25-key MIDI keyboard with similar requirements, both changing the game from matching up colors with on-screen graphics to actually playing a musical instrument.
Also on the way is an even more sophisticated controller built by Fender that's a fully functional six-string Squier Stratocaster guitar. There'll be three additional cymbals added to the drum kit for use with the pro mode. With these innovations, the game takes a gigantic leap from pretending to play instruments to learning to be a real musician.
What a great way to train people to play guitar and piano! Unfortunately, Rock Band aficionados will soon discover that the learning curve for mastering a musical instrument is many times steeper than becoming proficient on the current versions of Rock Band. Nice try, guys, but this is not going to work. Rock Band 2 is a video game, Rock Band 3 in the pro mode will feel like work.
Non-musicians will be relieved to know that Rock Band 3 will still have the original gameplay, with improved story mode and song filtering. This new version will be released in time for Christmas 2010 for the Sony PS3, Microsoft Xbox 360, and Nintendo Wii and DS.