This past weekend I was in the Big Apple visiting the object of my affection and catching up with friends. It was a great weekend filled with whiskey shots, gourmet pizza, random neighborhood pop-ins, and shot gunning beers in the bathtub. I also had my first NYC celeb sighting, resulting in a pic of me and Chuck Nice from Best Week Ever looking like BFF's. He even invited my friends and I to his stand-up show by scrawling information on a bar napkin. It was all very thrilling for me, considering Best Week Ever is the only video podcast I have that I actually watch. Amongst all this excitement, there is one event that truly made this weekend top-notch. Saturday night we had an impromptu party in my man's studio apartment, finally utilizing all the chairs he has piled in random corners of the kitchen. What made the mini-party so kick-ass was the addition of Rock Band, graciously and laboriously lugged over by a friend through the streets of Brooklyn in the freezing rain. The addition of Rock Band made the night a success. Our plans to hit the bars were delayed because this video game is awesome in so many ways: here are five of them. The top five reasons Rock Band is the best video game ever.
# 5 It Brings Out Your Inner Star
This is an obvious but important feature of Rock Band. I used to be a singer, and when I say used to I mean in middle school before I ruined my vocal chords with drinking and being lazy. But now that doesn't matter. Rock band has revived my performer self and given me the opportunity to live out my dream any random day of the week. Rock band provides you with the proper tools to be a rock star, including an audience, fans, and most importantly, the chance to name your band. Anyone who has ever felt defeated by life will once again feel alive after receiving 5 stars for playing "Hungry like the Wolf" with either your friends or video game audience members cheering you on.
# 4 It Brings People Together
My boyfriend lives in Brooklyn and my life-long friends live in Manhattan. Every time I jump on Bolt Bus to head up to the big city, I feel torn between the two boroughs. I stay in BK with my one and only but miss my Manhattanite friends over the bridge. All that changed this weekend. Despite the fact it was raining and cold, my friends gladly hopped on the subway when I told them Rock Band was in the cards for Saturday night. My worlds were victoriously united and I felt triumphant! I have defeated boundaries and found the key to solidarity! Perhaps I should use this discovery to start my own political party.
# 3 It is an Educational Experience
When we think a song is lame we tend to think there wasn't much skill needed for its creation. In Rock Band, you can be forced to play a song you don't like and wouldn't normally choose. The result can be eye opening. Playing a song on rock band reveals its musicality and you think to yourself "Hmm, I always thought that song was dumb, but the guitar is really hard. Those guys actually have some talent." It's like a music appreciation class. I just hope Pop Band comes out soon so the musicality of those cheesy songs I love can be revealed. I need some justification that the songs I rock out to in my car are actually worthy of my appreciation.
# 2 You Can Play at Different Levels
Not all of us are video game all-stars but that doesn't mean we don't want to join in on the fun. The beauty of Rock Band is that each member of the temporary band can play at his or her level of choice, from easy to expert (show offs). This gives video game newbies the opportunity to participate without having to endure constant eye rolling from the pros. You can even set the game to "no fail' if you're feeling extra shaky about your skills. Given that my skills are usually shaky, I find this feature to be very beneficial. It is just too bad the "no fail" option is not available in other areas of my life.
# 1 You Can Play it Alone
Sadly, we are not always surrounded by the ones we love and occasionally need something to lift our lonesome spirits. Saturday night started with three of us warming up the game, strumming the guitar and doing vocal exercises. The two boys ran out to get more PBR pounders and Pork Slap and I was left alone in the apartment with Rock Band tuned up and ready to go. I decided to grab the mic and rock out to "You Oughta Know" with nothing holding me back. It was a beautiful moment. I sang with passion, not worrying if others around were wincing in pain. The neighbors may have been poised at their walls with broom sticks at the ready but at that moment I didn't care. When I finished, I felt like I had just been to a killer yoga class or had really good sex, which is always a great way to start the night. The boys returned home, more people showed up, and the game continued to entertain. No one knew of my one-woman show just moments before. It is my little secret that I share with Rock Band only, making me feel slightly more attached to this enchanting game.
Come on, Eldrick.