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17 Comments

Let The World Know With Def Jam Rapstar's Social Side

The video sharing side of 4mm's latest will let you challenge players around the world.

 Here's what battles will look like.
At this point, we've probably covered enough of Def Jam Rapstar for you to understand the basic idea: you rap, you get rated, you unlock more songs and challenges, you rap some more, and so on. At E3 this year, 4mm Games and Terminal Reality focused more on the out-of-game experiences that Def Jam Rapstar will offer via its official website and, from the sounds of things, some sort of mobile app.

Much like the game itself, a lot of the things in Rapstar's community side feel like they've been informed by Sony's PlayStation 3 versions of SingStar, which let you save out clips of your performances and post them online for ratings and comments from other users. That aspect of SingStar will be present in Def Jam's game, but it's taking things further with the concept of battling.

You'll be able to challenge other users to battles from the site itself, and these battles essentially put your video from a song up against your opponent's performance. The in-game score is shown, but users will vote for one performer over the other, so it'll be more than just a simple score battle. Battles can go for up to three rounds, with other users commenting on the proceedings along the way. There will also be some regionality to the proceedings, too, with various coasts and other areas battling for online supremacy.

For rights reasons, the game will limit your video clips to 30 seconds, but you'll have tight control over which 30 seconds you upload, and you can also edit the clip further by applying various stickers and other effects to the footage. So if you want everything to have a red tinge and you want to make a totally sick pitbull appear on-screen for a few seconds, that's all within your power. Some of the items you can apply, like a little boombox, will animate. It all looks a little goofy, but if you want to get noticed online, some slick work with the effects seems like it could be a good way to stand out. At the very least, you can use a variety of graphics and effects to make the bedroom you're rapping in look a little less, well, bedroom-y.

It's easy to see the potential of Def Jam Rapstar's community side, especially if you've spent any time digging through Sony's huge library of weird uploaded SingStar videos. I fully expect we'll see puppets, dudes dressed up like Ghostbusters, and everything in between... but this time they'll be dropping rhymes instead of pretending to sing.

I also went through and played a bit of the game myself, performing 2Pac's "I Get Around." The lyric detection seems to be working just fine, which is a huge relief. The way you're scored and how accurate the judging is feels like a make-or-break feature for Rapstar. Additionally, it's worth noting that the game will use radio-friendly versions of songs. For tracks that merely blank out the cursing, this doesn't make any meaningful difference, since you can say whatever you want over the blank spots and it won't have an impact on your score. Songs with altered lyrics, however, expect you to know those words, and you'll get graded down if you spit the real lyrics in those spots. That's a little disappointing, and it'd be nice if the songs secretly knew the explicit sections and could score you appropriately. But that's life under the ESRB, I suppose. 
 
Even with the radio edits firmly in place, it's easy to get excited about 4mm's plans for Rapstar. Def Jam appears to be firmly behind it, and from the sounds of things, everyone involved is taking the idea of regular downloadable content very seriously, to the point where over 400 songs have been cleared for inclusion in the game. With that in mind, it's easy to see how something like Def Jam Rapstar could take up your entire holiday season and then some. Jeff Gerstmann on Google+
17 Comments
Posted by Jeff
 Here's what battles will look like.
At this point, we've probably covered enough of Def Jam Rapstar for you to understand the basic idea: you rap, you get rated, you unlock more songs and challenges, you rap some more, and so on. At E3 this year, 4mm Games and Terminal Reality focused more on the out-of-game experiences that Def Jam Rapstar will offer via its official website and, from the sounds of things, some sort of mobile app.

Much like the game itself, a lot of the things in Rapstar's community side feel like they've been informed by Sony's PlayStation 3 versions of SingStar, which let you save out clips of your performances and post them online for ratings and comments from other users. That aspect of SingStar will be present in Def Jam's game, but it's taking things further with the concept of battling.

You'll be able to challenge other users to battles from the site itself, and these battles essentially put your video from a song up against your opponent's performance. The in-game score is shown, but users will vote for one performer over the other, so it'll be more than just a simple score battle. Battles can go for up to three rounds, with other users commenting on the proceedings along the way. There will also be some regionality to the proceedings, too, with various coasts and other areas battling for online supremacy.

For rights reasons, the game will limit your video clips to 30 seconds, but you'll have tight control over which 30 seconds you upload, and you can also edit the clip further by applying various stickers and other effects to the footage. So if you want everything to have a red tinge and you want to make a totally sick pitbull appear on-screen for a few seconds, that's all within your power. Some of the items you can apply, like a little boombox, will animate. It all looks a little goofy, but if you want to get noticed online, some slick work with the effects seems like it could be a good way to stand out. At the very least, you can use a variety of graphics and effects to make the bedroom you're rapping in look a little less, well, bedroom-y.

It's easy to see the potential of Def Jam Rapstar's community side, especially if you've spent any time digging through Sony's huge library of weird uploaded SingStar videos. I fully expect we'll see puppets, dudes dressed up like Ghostbusters, and everything in between... but this time they'll be dropping rhymes instead of pretending to sing.

I also went through and played a bit of the game myself, performing 2Pac's "I Get Around." The lyric detection seems to be working just fine, which is a huge relief. The way you're scored and how accurate the judging is feels like a make-or-break feature for Rapstar. Additionally, it's worth noting that the game will use radio-friendly versions of songs. For tracks that merely blank out the cursing, this doesn't make any meaningful difference, since you can say whatever you want over the blank spots and it won't have an impact on your score. Songs with altered lyrics, however, expect you to know those words, and you'll get graded down if you spit the real lyrics in those spots. That's a little disappointing, and it'd be nice if the songs secretly knew the explicit sections and could score you appropriately. But that's life under the ESRB, I suppose. 
 
Even with the radio edits firmly in place, it's easy to get excited about 4mm's plans for Rapstar. Def Jam appears to be firmly behind it, and from the sounds of things, everyone involved is taking the idea of regular downloadable content very seriously, to the point where over 400 songs have been cleared for inclusion in the game. With that in mind, it's easy to see how something like Def Jam Rapstar could take up your entire holiday season and then some.
Staff
Edited by ribeye

i mean..
Posted by punchkick

looks good to me.

Posted by Blueman

This looks cool.

Posted by ZmillA
@ribeye said:
" kajsdf  "
ok?
Posted by ChristianCastillo

@Jeff: you need to post that video of you in that Def Jam Rapstar presentation where Red Man goes looking for his hat, have been wanting to see that

Posted by jonnyboy

Nothing says "I'm the dopest rapper in my hood" than telling people on social networking sites.

Posted by JackiJinx

Haters gonna hate! I'm still excited for this.

Posted by Jimbo

 And that was E3.

Posted by eezo

 http://livingelpaso.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/haters.jpg

Posted by BergDK
@ChristianCastillo said:
" @Jeff: you need to post that video of you in that Def Jam Rapstar presentation where Red Man goes looking for his hat, have been wanting to see that "
It's in the E3: Day 2 video
Posted by Sil3n7
Posted by KuribosShoe

buying this 
 
I assume it'll work with the lips mic?

Posted by George_Hukas

I was totally into this.. 
 
What killed it for me:
-30 second video clips.. I understanding limiting battles to 30s but come on, now you can only battle
-Song selection.. Its called Rapstar, not Hip Hop Star-that says it all. 400 dlc songs? Oh, theres all the good shit
-Radio edits/Alt. song versions.. No M rating = more kids = more sales.. Even though online battles will be FUCKING FOUL
 
I still plan on getting it because the SingStar elements seem fun enough but when my friends come over to freestyle and make music we'll be sticking with our own beats

Posted by secret77
@cide:  
  
+ what do you mean "only battle" clips? everything i've read says i can upload and share any clips, whether or not i "battle" with them or not 
 
+ for me, rap and hip hop are different ways of labeling the same music. track list looks pretty good so far imo, BIG, Pete Rock and CL, Slick Rick, WU, not mad at Lil' Wayne, that song was a MONSTER two years ago 
 
+ DLC isn't rated so maybe that's when they'll drop ice t's Girls LGBNAFN ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bd7GEJu4x_A)
Edited by Cubical

How in the fuck do these Def jam games keep getting made? 
 
It was the worst idea ever to start Fighting rappers but anything with rappers is bound to suck. Oh and to top off that bad idea the game play sucked  like a cherry on ice cream only it was a topping off suck. 
  
And I have no idea who any of these fucking rappers are because they annoy the hell out of me So who cares what the roster is just get some badly dressed dudes throw some gold chains and ugly bling on them and you have a def jam game but don't have to pay any of the rapper freaks to be in it. 
Listen to me dudes in suits at  konami. Nobody can tell and you will get nothing but profits that you can use to make something good like a   new    The Goonies game just like the nes one but like new it will kick ass you can call it "new Goonies 3: the Chunks revenge"

Posted by PjotrLeschenko
@Cubical said:
" How in the fuck do these Def jam games keep getting made? 
 
It was the worst idea ever to start Fighting rappers but anything with rappers is bound to suck. Oh and to top off that bad idea the game play sucked  like a cherry on ice cream only it was a topping off suck. 
  
And I have no idea who any of these fucking rappers are because they annoy the hell out of me So who cares what the roster is just get some badly dressed dudes throw some gold chains and ugly bling on them and you have a def jam game but don't have to pay any of the rapper freaks to be in it. 
Listen to me dudes in suits at  konami. Nobody can tell and you will get nothing but profits that you can use to make something good like a   new    The Goonies game just like the nes one but like new it will kick ass you can call it "new Goonies 3: the Chunks revenge" "
okay... haters gonna hate
b2t
what is the price on the DLC, any info would be appreciated and will there be a bundle with 2(1?)mics? I've never had any interest to buy one of the Singstars games but rap is my turf dawg yo cracker*suburb teenage mode off*