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The Easiest and Most Challenging Songs in Rocksmith 2014

Posted by Rampant Coyote on August 25, 2015

JaysGuitarRocksmith 2014 has a pretty huge library of songs at this point, particularly if you include imported songs and DLC from the first game. It fortunately includes songs with a wide range of difficulty levels, although in many cases that really depends on what part you play. The “average” song is easiest on bass, harder on rhythm, and hardest on lead. But there are a lot of deviations from this, including songs where the bass gets the biggest workout.

Trying to define what’s easiest and what’s hardest is its own challenge, because what’s easy for one player to pick up may be difficult for another. Switching between certain chords quickly? Accurate string bends? Rhythm timing?

Of interest perhaps to nobody but myself, I put together my personal list of what I consider the easiest and the most challenging songs currently available in Rocksmith 2014. The easiest would I guess be useful for new players looking for something within their grasp to master. The most challenging ones… well, those are my holy grail. I figure if I can master those, I can have no problem playing anything with or without the game. At least until the guys at Ubisoft manage to license some tunes from Dragonforce.

I focused on lead guitar parts, since that’s what most players focus on. There are probably a few rhythm parts that are arguably easier than what I have listed – but not by much. Bass is a whole ‘nother story of easy. I’ve hit 100% my first time playing some bass parts, which I never do with rhythm or lead guitar.

Another thing to note… playing a song accurately for Rocksmith isn’t the same as playing it well enough for human listeners. It gets you in the ballpark, but RS 2014 actively strives (by default) to wean you off the game, committing a song to memory so you can play it without the game, to be judged only by human ears. Just like guitarists have done for centuries.

Easiest Songs:

If you are new to guitar and want tolearn to play a song note-for-note as it appeared in the original recording, these are good candidates. They are easy enough for beginners to tackle, and even master with a reasonable amount of practice. And they are good for getting some platinum picks in your score attacks.

Next Girl – The Black Keys (RS1 Import): This is a the one song I came perilously close to nailing with 100% accuracy at full difficulty the first time I played. It’s simple, single-notes, and plays at a relaxed pace. The only real special skill it requires is a basic hammer-on (and it’ll register success even if you strum it, so “requires” is a very loose term).

Blitzkrieg Bop – The Ramones (RS2014): Four two-finger power chords. Other than nailing rhythm and upstrokes, there’s really nothing to this one. It can’t get much easier.

My Girl – The Temptations (RS1 DLC): “I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day…” This is a classic soul / rock hit from 1964, with a pretty familiar riff even for those of us born long after the song was popular. It’s a simple riff and 2 & 3 note chords on the higher strings, but even with the key change it goes at an easy pace for a beginner to keep up (and memorize!). The rhythm part is even easier.

Song 2 – Blur (RS1 Import): This one has a few more two-finger power chords (double stops) and a double-stop octave with a skipped string that you’ll need to learn to mute. But otherwise, it’s only marginally more challenging than Blitzkrieg Bop.

All the Small Things – Blink 182 (RS1 DLC): This is probably more difficult than the other four, and at this point you can probably name several other songs that are approximately as easy. It kinda-sorta has a solo (using all of two notes), and is faster than My Girl, but it’s still a good, catchy piece to practice to master the chart.


Hardest Songs:

I have less to say about the hardest songs on the list, mainly because they are so hard I can’t manage more than about 25% mastery, if that. Fortunately, thanks to the game I can kinda-sorta play along and sound lile

For the Love of God – Steve Vai (RS2014 DLC): Extremely technical. It starts out slow and gives you the false hope that you can maybe manage it. And then shred happens. I believe the title of the song is what many people exclaim as they try to master this monster.

Cliffs of Dover – Eric Johnson (RS1 DLC): The previous reigning champion for difficulty, although many still feel it’s the hardest because it is kind of weird and ever-changing. It’s also a piece that just brings a smile to my face every time I listen to it, and even as I’m doing my best to play along. Like For the Love of God, it’s a song that’s pretty much one giant solo.

Death Mental – Golden Bomber(RS2014 DLC): This would be challenging at half the speed. I’d never heard the song before Rocksmith (true of most Japanese music), but man, it’s an awesome crazy old-school speed metal shred for those of us still waiting on Yngwie Malmsteen and Dragonforce.

Satch Boogie – Joe Satriani (RS2014):  Arguably the most challenging of the songs that came included with Rocksmith 2014, by the master rock guitarist who taught legends like Steve Vai.

Hangar 18 – Megadeth (RS1 DLC): Half the song is solos. Be grateful it’s only half.

So there you go. I think those songs paint a pretty good picture of the extremes. There may be other songs that are just as easy or just as hard, which could have fit easily in my lists. But I think you’d be hard pressed to find songs that are significantly more easy (on lead) or more difficult.

Fortunately for people like me, there’s a whole lot in-between.

Filed Under: Guitar Games - Comments: 2 Comments to Read

  • goldenpiggy123 said,

    megadeAth. I have cancer

  • Rampant Coyote said,