THQ Jumps on “Band” Wagon with Mashups

First came Guitar Hero… well, actually, first came Konami’s GuitarFreaks, but it’s Guitar Hero that ran with the ball in North America. Anyway, then came Rock Band, and then the next thing we know, there’s a video game war besides the ongoing console wars.

Now, there’s a new up-and-comer ready to enter the game, a hungry young pup ready to make its mark in the musical games market, and it goes by the name of Band Mashups, created by Planet Moon Studios, and it’s coming to the Wii.

The interface is not unlike your common “Rock Hero” fare, but distinguishes itself through unique combative elements and track-switches. Players will face off head-to-head, each as a part of one of 11 different bands, and employ strange weaponry like sniper violins and flamethrowing guitars to trade blows, while whoever is in the lead will dictate the music played.

Each band will have their own story as they compete for a chance to take on the game’s primary nemesis, the evil Mr. Hong and his Violent Orchestra. Spooky.

“Band Mashups takes an innovative approach to the rhythm/action genre by blending music and combat in the ultimate battle of the bands,” said Randy Shoemaker, global brand director at THQ. “Using a rhythm based game-play mechanic, the game delivers 70 over-the-top musical weapons and utilizes the Wii Remote’s functionality to deliver a completely original musical combat experience. Fighting with a sniper violin or flamethrower guitar is something gamers should definitely look forward to.”

Most interesting of all is that the game deviates from the rhythmic norm by not offering an add-on peripheral, but instead use of the Wii remote as players slash and stab according to the directions that come up from the bottom of the screen. By stringing them together, attacks are performed that will throw off their opponents’ timing, though these attacks can be blocked with properly-timed button presses.

The game will feature 30 licensed songs spanning the past four decades, with each song being re-recorded in all five musical genres presented within: rock, funk/hip hop, country, Latin, and marching band. So in total, that’s 150 different tracks.

The current track list includes the following:

  • The Gorillaz – “Feel Good Inc.”
  • Tag Team – “Whoomp! (There It Is)”
  • Tenacious D – “Master Exploder”
  • The Ramones – “Blitzkrieg Bop”
  • The Commodores – “Brick House”
  • KC and the Sunshine Band – “That’s the Way (I Like It)”
  • Texas Tornados – “Adios Mexico”
  • Black Eyed Peas – “Dum Diddy”
  • Cypress Hill – “Insane in the Brain”
  • Kool & the Gang – “Jungle Boogie”
  • LL Cool J – “Mama Said Knock You Out”
  • The Fixx – “One Thing Leads to Another”
  • Soundgarden – “Spoonman”
  • Def Leppard – “Photograph”
  • The Soggy Bottom Boys – “Man of Constant Sorrow”

The game is slated for a Spring release, and you can see videos and screens at IGN’s page below.