Peripherals company PDP has revealed an exciting new guitar controller called the Riffmaster, offering modern console gamers a nostalgic way to jam out. Launching in Spring 2024, this wireless guitar peripheral is compatible with Rock Band 4 at release, and will support Fortnite Festival later this year.
PDP Teases Then Unveils Riffmaster Guitar Controller
After Epic Games released the music rhythm battle experience Fortnite Festival in late 2023, PDP began teasing they already had something in development for it. Sharing a vague silhouette resembling old plastic guitar controllers, PDP has now fully announced the Riffmaster.
This fresh take on the beloved gaming gadget launches on Xbox and PlayStation consoles this spring. While timing details remain unannounced, the guitar works with Rock Band 4 on day one. Later on, an update will add integration with Fortnite Festival so players can use the Riffmaster to jam in that virtual music festival as well.
Modern Improvements Over Classic Guitar Controllers
At first glance, the streamlined Riffmaster looks quite similar to guitar controllers that powered the heyday of franchises like Guitar Hero and Rock Band. It features the familiar row of color-coded buttons to “play” notes as they scroll down the screen. And a strum bar to punch out chords, along with effects controls to add flair.
But PDP has packed the Riffmaster with modern improvements making it more immersive, easier to play, and far less frustrating than its predecessors. Key upgrades include:
- Analog stick on the back – enables navigating menus and moving your character without the clumsy D-pad or strum bar.
- Ambidextrous design – accessible and comfortable for both left and right-handed rockers.
- Foldable build – compacts for convenient storage and portability.
- Removable faceplate – customize the look and swap designs.
The controller also promises up to 36 hours of battery life per charge ensuring marathon jam sessions are no problem.
Two Models Releasing For Xbox and PlayStation Consoles
When the Riffmaster guitar controller launches this Spring 2024, it will be released in two platform-specific models for gamers on both Xbox and PlayStation consoles.
The Xbox version works with Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S systems. While the PlayStation model supports PS4 and PS5. No exact release date or pricing details are available yet. But with support for current and last-gen consoles, a wide range of gamers will be able to equip the Riffmaster for their musical gaming needs.
Rock Band 4 Compatible on Day One
Since the Riffmaster is launching as Rock Band 4 receives its final round of DLC songs, it will integrate with Harmonix’s latest rhythm game immediately. Allowing users to boot up Rock Band 4 on their Xbox or PlayStation and start shredding tracks with the new guitar right away this Spring.
Fortnite Festival Compatibility Coming Later
Epic Games has promised Fortnite Festival will add support for guitar controllers and other peripherals as the live service experience grows. Harmonix recently shifted development resources toward expanding Fortnite Festival after years of supporting Rock Band 4.
So while the Riffmaster does not work with Fortnite Festival at launch, integration should arrive in a future update. Once the compatibility patch is live, owners can use the PDP guitar to play all songs added to Fortnite Festival so far and jam along with future tracks too.
Satisfying Musical Nostalgia
Between dying franchises like Guitar Hero and fading instruments gathering dust in closets, plastic guitar controllers evoke musical gaming nostalgia for 2000s gamers. With the market lacking quality options for many years now, the Riffmaster aims to satisfy pent up demand for this sector.
The fun factor of rhythm games endures, especially with the social competition angle Fortnite Festival introduces. By blending classic peripheral design with thoughtful modern features, PDP seems well-positioned to kickstart a new wave of console add-ons extending the musical adventure.
Gamers eager to recapture the glory days of rocking living rooms or experience it for the first time should watch for preorder announcements as the Riffmaster’s spring launch approaches. Once pricing details emerge, players can secure the new guitar controller to play current and upcoming titles like the ultimate pop star.