The Twelve Days of Customs 2014, Day Twelve

 


Our final day’s songs are from pksage (yours truly) and sageamagoo!

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I should probably write something, huh?

Hi, everyone! You had to read my blurb last year, and you have to put up with my copy writing every week as it is, so I’ll keep it short. I don’t have any particularly  inspiring or interesting Rock Band stories from this year. My Rock Band experience has largely evolved into this very community — authoring songs to keep the legacy alive, and getting the warm fuzzies when people play them. I still play on occasion, of course, but the role of creator and administrator takes up most of my time.

Ever wondered what goes into a weekly release? After making sure all of the songs are ready to go, I grab all of them from the server, extract their metadata, and load it into the database one song at a time, adding the download links and tweaking other things as I go. I write the blog post, adding all of the images from the C3 CON Tools Visualizer, and collecting any comments that the authors wrote. Then I manually add each song to our bug tracker database, because I still haven’t written a  simple script to populate it for me, and write the forum announcement with the links to everything. Then it’s a matter of hooking up the video prepared by the hard-working Lowlander, and a script mostly takes care of the actual launch on Friday mornings. Mostly. There’s usually a bit of scurrying around at the last minute, but still, there is A System. I hope that you’ll continue to enjoy our weekly releases and my sometimes-goofy blog posts!

The Twelve Days of Customs was originally envisioned as a way for authors to give a little extra to the players, and I’ve tried to embody that ideal with this year’s song. I’ve dreamed of a time when Rock Band represented every last significant band and artist in the history of rock music, and to that end, I’m happy to present our first Prince song. Now, I know it’s not from Purple Rain, and it’s not “1999”, and it’s not “Raspberry Beret”, but “Kiss” is a landmark Prince song that was coincidentally much more authorable than “When Doves Cry” or “Let’s Go Crazy”. This song is mostly for vocalists, but there’s a great guitar solo in there, too. I’m not really a huge Prince fan (though I’m far from a hater), but it was worth it to fill this hole in our song lists. Just don’t ask me to do the rest of his big singles. 🙂

Happy holidays to you and yours! Please travel safely, rock responsibly, and join us in 2015 for another year of C3.

sageamagoo writes:

Hello! This is sageamagoo, resident pro keys enthusiast here at C3. Rock Band has been a huge part of my life since it came out in 2007. It’s always been looked at as the go-to party game and has something for everyone to enjoy. But more importantly, it introduced me to some of my now-favourite artists (Faith No More, Poni Hoax, The Flaming Lips, Queens of the Stone Age, Dream Theater, Modest Mouse, Phish, Spacehog, etc.) Despite this, the game wouldn’t mean nearly as much to me if it weren’t for one thing:

Pro mode.

I already had a good background in piano when Rock Band 3 came out, so I was excited to see how well I’d do in the game. I let it boot up, tried Imagine on Expert, and failed out. What was this weird interface? It was nothing like sheet music. Why do the notes go so fast? Why can’t I react in time? You mean I have to hit four notes at the same time, with less than a second’s notice? Needless to say, I was a bit put out—but then I thought,

“If I had to learn this song on an actual piano, I’m sure it wouldn’t be that bad…”

So I went back to the beginning and worked my way up. After some attempts, I could work through the simplest of songs, and as I practiced more it became an exciting challenge, trying to better yourself and get through each song with a good score. There was just so much depth. Even at 2-dot difficulty things weren’t easy, and there were another 4 tiers to go, each exponentially harder than the last. All of a sudden, there was this weird revelation. This fun party game had grown into something much more meaningful. The fact that I could essentially play a fully functioning instrument in a music game turned Rock Band 3 into the greatest game I’d ever played.

Fast forward a few years, and I discover this group called C3. I had heard of custom songs before, but the videos I saw on YouTube showcasing old Guitar Hero customs looked really bad. C3 was different. C3 had people dedicated to making their songs as accurate as possible, and they had a thriving community where you too could learn how to put your favourite songs in the game.

So here I am, finally, with my first official custom. Crystalised by The xx is a great entry-level song that’s both easy and fun to play—and it has pro! I thought it fitting for my first custom to include something so dear to my heart, and this song is perfect for beginners who are picking up a pro instrument for the first time.

I’d like to thank Espher for his work on the Rock Band Harmonies Project, and for helping me through my first Pro Keys upgrades. He inspired me to take the plunge into upgrades and customs, and gave me deadlines I tried hard to follow. Without his help, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

I’d also like to thank StackOverflow0x for his hard work bringing customs to Wii users. I started out on the Wii, and it’s because of him I was able to play customs in the first place.

Also, I’d like to give a huge shoutout to TrojanNemo, who brought us all the software the authors use on a daily basis. His work revolutionized the customs-making process, and helped make C3 what it is today.

And lastly, one final shoutout to Farottone for being the charting powerhouse he is. At over 300 customs, it’s hard to believe he has time to sleep, let alone be such an active and integral part of our community. I mean, did you see that Genesis release? Crazy. His work is an inspiration to us all.

(Remember, this is just a reveal; all of the songs will be released together tomorrow, December 25. See you then for the release post!)

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