Per the official Rock Band 2 press release, Rock Band 2 will support “exporting” the Rock Band 1 tracks:
The Disc Export Feature gives owners of the original Rock Band the ability to export most of the Rock Band disc tracks and upgrade them into Rock Band 2 gameplay — the first time ever in videogame history!
This is exciting news indeed! Rock Band 2 will be a much better platform to play the original Rock Band 1 songs, plus, I don’t think anyone will miss not having to reboot their console every time they want to play “Won’t Get Fooled Again” or “Wanted Dead or Alive”. A few more details have emerged on this feature from the E3 show floor:
- The export will not be free; there is a one-time charge of around $5 to export the songs. This is probably to prevent abuse of the feature. If it was free, anyone could borrow a copy of the disc and magically add ~50 songs to their Rock Band 2 playlist.
- Harmonix is not sure they will be able to re-license all the Rock Band 1 songs for Rock Band 2. They’re hopeful, but they assured reporters that in the worst case scenario, only 3 to 5 of the original songs would go missing. Word on the street is that Guitar Hero artist exclusivity may interfere (Aerosmith, Metallica).
If you consider the 80 tracks in Rock Band 2, plus 50 more exported from Rock Band 1, and the 20 free downloadable tracks Harmonix has promised in September — that’s a grand total of 150 playable tracks out of the box on day one of release! And that’s before you factor in the impressive DLC library, too.