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Practice Mode


imageThe Practice Modes in Rock Band 2 for guitar, bass, and drums are almost everything a player could ask for. Everything from RB1's practice mode still exists here: you select which section you want to start at, which section you want to end at, select the speed (which can still be changed mid-practice mode by the D-Pad), and practice that segment. At the end of it, it will loop back to the beginning and start over again. An aspect overlooked for some reason in Rock Band 1's practice mode was keeping the streak multiplier, which made it tough to tell when you overstrummed in practice mode. This has returned in Rock Band 2, so practicing hard sections is now easier and less of a pain than before. Unfortunately for vocalists everywhere, Practice Mode is still completely useless. Instead of giving vocalists the same options as guitarists, bassists, and drummers by letting them practice section by section and looping sections, we're still forced to sit here and practice entire songs. The only plus side of practice mode is that you can't fail the song, so you could theoretically just wait until you get to the phrase you wanted to practice...but compared to how awesome the rest of Practice Mode is, vocals practice just seems so archaic.

Drum Trainer


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The new drum trainer mode is a great way for someone to start building up skill on drums. It allows players to practice 76 beats and 45 fills, many of which will be seen throughout different songs in the game. You can adjust the tempo from 40-200 BPM by increments of 20. These beats and fills cover a wide array of styles and difficulties. Many of the patterns presented in the drum trainer are similar to what many drummers would be learning if taking real drum lessons, and could easily be translated over to a real kit. While early beats may be easy even at the highest tempo settings, later ones such as Toms of Doom prove quite difficult even at lower BPM settings. One neat, albeit small addition is the choice of 6 different drum kits which alter the sound of the drums.








Freestyle Mode


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Freestyle mode allows the player to freely play along to any music that they have stored on their console. While in theory this is a neat idea, without having the cymbal attachments it is somewhat limited, since the pad to sound layout is fixed. This leaves you with only snare, hi hat, one tom, a crash cymbal and bass pedal. Like the drum trainer you can select from 6 different drum kits, which change the sound of the drums.














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