Lack of HDD Blamed for Rock Band Wii DLC Drop

Rock Band developer Harmonix said that the absence of downloadable content on the Wii version of Rock Band is due to a lack of viable storage space, CVG reports.

The developer had confirmed that the Wii version of its rhythm party opus would not support downloadable content when the port was announced late last month.

"Come on Nintendo, we need a hard drive," said Rock Band design director Rob Kay. "That's what we want. The whole problem is there's nowhere to store it."

The Wii currently offers 512 megabytes of internal flash memory for storage, expandable via SD flash cards. Rock Band downloadable tracks range roughly between 20 and 40 megabytes per song.

"If the platform could do it, we'd jump on it," added Kay. "It's something that we championed to Nintendo, that we'd like to do it. Who knows what will happen down the line, I don't know what's coming down the line, but that's the reason there's no DLC in Wii Rock Band."

From The Chatty
  • reply
    April 9, 2008 12:38 PM

    So is it just that they're not interested in competing for space on the internal memory? Or is there some technical reason they couldn't do so or store additional songs on SD cards?

    I mean, it could be that Nintendo doesn't allow developers to go above a certian size, or that they don't allow direct access to the SD card slot's contents, or maybe the access to the data would wreak havoc on the card (I've heard if you tried to run an OS from an average flash drive for any significant length of time the flash drive would die because it's not designed to be accessed in the same way operating systems tax hard drives).

    But I could see a potential for people who really want Rock Band on WIi and want DLC to be able to store them on SD cards, so why didn't they do that? Is it technical (i.e., the issues I mentioned above) or just logistical? (explaining to Wii owners why the memory on their 2GB card is full or something)

    • reply
      April 9, 2008 12:57 PM

      I think the support costs would be horrendous. "There are 70 songs up there and I've download five and my memory card is full... what do you mean I have to delete some of the ones I already have... how do I play those after then?... so I can't download my 10 favourites to pay with my friends, we have to stop and delete and download again?... I would have to buy another memory card after I've spent all this already on this game?" Repeat with variations on the theme.

      • reply
        April 9, 2008 1:23 PM

        Package the game with a 2GB SD card (they're less than $20 now...):

        If downloaded songs are 40MB max, then you should be able to fit about 50 songs on the SD card. If that's not enough songs to have at one time then go buy more SD cards. The SD slot is very under-utilized.

        Are people really so stupid anymore that they don't understand storage space vs. file size? Maybe some of the moms playing Rock Band wouldn't "get it" but their kids would show them how it's done. Does MS and Sony get that many support calls when people's hard drives fill up?

        • reply
          April 9, 2008 6:20 PM

          That actually makes a lot of sense. It already costs a lot for the game, why not throw in an SD card. I never have even used the SD card slot.

      • reply
        April 9, 2008 4:38 PM

        Gamers have been dealing with "blocks" on memory cards for over a decade now.

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