Universal acclaim - based on 69 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 69 out of 69
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 69
  3. Negative: 0 out of 69
  1. Rock Band 2 is THE definitive version of its revolutionary progenitor– better instruments, better online modes, and a wickedly better song list – taking its place as one of the greatest multiplayer games of our generation. Where Rock Band 2 doesn’t innovate, it polishes and tweaks until it KILLS.
  2. Rock Band steps up from clubs to arenas and barely misses a beat.
  3. An excellent sequel to Harmonix's new music franchise.
  4. This is a worthy sequel with a look and feel that are more polished than last year’s effort.
  5. You can say its not very innovative in comparison with the original game. But this is a minor thing if we take into account that this is without doubt the best game in the genre, and a great achievement if we consider the great struggle with its rival, that doesn't lose grip.
  6. 90
    The track list is better, the difficulty has been bumped up, it's more accessible, all previously released DLC works from the get-go, and Battle of the Bands is a brilliant online mode. But there's no getting around the fact that almost nothing was done to the main mode, World Tour.
  7. At its worst, Rock Band 2 feels like a massive expansion pack that fills in the gaps from the original game. At its best, it’s a rewarding and refined excuse to pick up your fake career where you left off — laughing and rocking with friends near and far for a group thrill that few other games can deliver.
  8. It does a lot to cater to nearly all skill levels and playing styles, and it's one of the most user-friendly rhythm games ever published.
  9. The new Challenge and Battle of the Bands modes and tweaks to the World Tour mode will keep you playing for months.
  10. Whether or not you grab the new hardware, there is no question that the stand-alone Rock Band 2 game is worth its $60 price tag. Heck, you'd pay twice that just to download the 84 new songs; toss in the new online functionality, Battle of the Bands and the Drum Trainer and you get another desert island classic.
  11. 90
    Rock Band 2 is a massive bullet-point list of new features, each of which makes playing the game a little bit more fun, a little bit less annoying. MTV has played it very safe: It has not broken anything, but neither has it taken any great risks to add any feature that is mind-blowingly new, the way it did when it added drumming and vocals to Guitar Hero in the first place.
  12. While a few songs suffer from note repetition, the overall mix is robust and fun to play. For anyone who enjoyed Guitar Hero or Rock Band, Rock Band 2 is a no-brainer.
  13. While nothing terribly new has made its way onto the new disc, the amount of songs more than covers the price of admission. And you won't even have to sit through any putrid local opening acts.
  14. Fans of the original Rock Band will probably find Rock Band 2 worth it both for the large new tracklist and the numerous engine improvements, while newcomers to the series will enjoy one of the most polished music game experiences to date.
  15. It doesn't drastically shake up the formula, but it does come one step closer to perfecting it.
  16. 90
    A significant enough step up from the original to warrant your renewed attention this year.
  17. More or less every concern and complaint we had about the original game has been addressed, the new tracklist is very much to our taste (with 20 more free songs to come, remember), and with the rebalancing of difficulty, modes like Battle of the Bands and the No Fail modifier and Drum Trainer, Harmonix has completed the awkward job of broadening the game's appeal at both ends of the skill spectrum successfully. It's an excellent, measured sequel that should appeal to all.
  18. By polishing away blemishes, Rock Band 2 carefully improves on its predecessor. Those expecting the likes of music-making functionality perhaps aren’t quite on Rock Band’s wavelength, which is about performance, not creativity. [Dec 2008, p.85]
  19. 90
    While Rock Band 2 did not create or redefine the rhythm game genre, it is a very worthy addition to any game library.
  20. Rock Band 2 includes substantial improvements and a better setlist over its predecessor, making it the must-own music game for the 360. [Issue#39]
  21. Rock Band 2 is, basically, everything that the first one had. Which is not good, but great news. But everything that Harmonix has added this time makes the package even better. Improved, more sensitive instruments, the great backwards compatibility and indeed the new online co-op for both Band Tour and Multiplayer modes are the best of the mix. One of the few games which a sequel makes sense.
  22. RB2 improves on the original and does enough to distance itself from main rival GH, although uncanny similarity to the first game might leave a sour taste in the mouths of those that already bought one Rock Band game this year. Still, it’s the most refined and thorough example of the genre so far and for that alone must be applauded.
  23. At its worst, Rock Band 2 feels like a massive expansion pack that just fills in all the missing gaps from the original game. [Christmas 2008, p.92]
  24. For us, Rock Band 2 is brilliant, just like Guitar Hero: World Tour is. We can't pick between them. Slightly boring conclusion, we know, but the right one.
  25. Harmonix paid good attention to what made Rock Band such a success. It fully adapted Rock Band 2 to this knowledge and that's why single player and multiplayer mode gives you the feeling that you're playing one solid game. The game offers much more than its predecessor and even the tracklist (what seemed almost impossible) is even better than the first one. Harmonix has given the fans exactly what they want and has given newcomers a nice starting point.
  26. The second installment in the hard rocking franchise may seem familiar at first, but the fact is that there are several minor and major additions here that do a lot to improve the overall experience. You can now play the campaign online and there is a new training mode for all of us that are struggling with learning the drums. There are 84 new songs to rock out to and an additional 20 to download for free. This is in fact a buy even for those who bough the first Rock Band, and for those who own neither it's a must have.
  27. The whole drop-in drop-out nature of the world tour, both online and off, is outstanding. It’s also worryingly addictive. There never feels like a good enough reason to stop. [Jan 2009, p.98]
  28. HG's victory is an academic one. [Jan 2009, p.81]
  29. Jamming with friends to some classic tunes that span 4 decades and a variety of genres is a load of fun and a great way to waste an evening. The new features are not enough to convert anyone who can't stand rhythm games to begin with but to anyone who enjoys this kind of experience should go out and add Rock Band 2 to their library today.
  30. 88
    Overall Rock Band 2 makes a few welcome changes to a solid rhythm action title – and the overall soundtrack is a big step up.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 151 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 34
  2. Negative: 4 out of 34
  1. Oct 8, 2010
    Rock Band 2 has a large variety of genres on platform. The option of 2000 (At time of writing) songs ranging from Death Metal to Nerdcore toRock Band 2 has a large variety of genres on platform. The option of 2000 (At time of writing) songs ranging from Death Metal to Nerdcore to Funk to Rap to Trance. From Megadeth to Gun's n Roses to Snoop Dogg to Bob Marley.
    The option to import all the songs from Rock Band 1, Lego Rock Band and Green Day Rock Band allows users to keep on playing their songs on one disc and future editions of the game.
    World Tour bring a much longer and varied playthrough rather than Rock Band 1's play one song, next! play next song, NEXT!.
    Single users can play World Tour now.
    Realistic charts a.k.a single notes rather than a ensemble of three note chords.
    Weekly Download content announced every friday on
    Better graphics and colourschemes. (Have you seen the main menu tiger! D:)
    Rock Band Network allows even more songs for 360 users and soon to be PS3 and Wii Character Creator could do with a makeover
    Full Review »
  2. Jun 9, 2013
    Taking the formula of Guitar Hero and adding the option for both vocals and drums to be played alongside the guitar Rock Band 2 makes no realTaking the formula of Guitar Hero and adding the option for both vocals and drums to be played alongside the guitar Rock Band 2 makes no real effort to cater for the single player but does make for a great party game. Full Review »
  3. Mar 31, 2011
    Song list that can only appeal to people who can nicely fit their musical taste in a predictable box and think they can gain substantialSong list that can only appeal to people who can nicely fit their musical taste in a predictable box and think they can gain substantial musical knowledge from having a subscription to the Rolling Stones magazine. Full Review »