Hooked Up: Rock Band Drum Sticks


posted 1/3/2009 by Dan Keener
other articles by Dan Keener
Welcome to Hooked Up, the Gaming Nexus series that puts the spotlight on gaming related products that impact the Video Game experience. This week we take a look at BD&A - Rock Band Replacement Drum Sticks.

What is it?
The official Rock Band branded replacement drumsticks.

Product Quick Reference 
Company BD&A
Product Rock Band Drum Sticks
Price $7.99
Product Website www.RockBand.com

While traversing my local Best Buy, my eye was caught by these multi-colored drumsticks that had the Rock Band logo all over them. Intrigued, I decided to grab a couple of pairs (Red and Black) because they simply looked a hell of a lot cooler than my plain vanilla sticks that came with the game.

I noticed a couple of things immediately when I cracked these sticks open for the first time. When I gripped them, I realizes that the glossy paint job was a lot slicker than the basic finish on the regular Rock Band sticks. Anyone that has played Rock Band knows that you can work up a sweat if you are playing on anything harder than easy. After playing with them for a few hours, I decided that the paint probably won’t cause too many issues. However, I did have it slip in my hand a couple times, but it never went flying across the room like a Wii remote.

The other thing is that the tips are much larger than the stock Rock Band sticks. This could be good or bad depending on personal preference. I found it definitely impacted the feel of the sticks on the drum pads at first, but I got used to it over time. It also seemed to help me the way I play, as I was striking the face of the drum more and not the edge so much.

One other thing I noticed with the two sets I bought, is that they are not perfectly uniform. For the cost, I wasn’t expecting it, but onset (the bred ones) has a 1/8 difference from tip to tail, and the tip on one was milled at an angle. The other set was not as far off, but wasn’t uniform either.

Pros Cons
Bigger Tip Slick Paint
Look Great Not Uniform
Relatively Inexpensive  

Gaming Impact
The impact of getting these sticks will range from huge to none at all. It is all about the individual player and their preferences. The coating on the sticks and the larger tip can easily alter the way someone plays the game, while others may either not notice it at all. In actuality, they impact the game by providing a more glitzy version of the basic amenity every drummer needs. I have switched to them full time, as the larger tip seems to assist me while playing.

The Skinny
The replacement sticks for Rock Band work quite well, and like any piece of equipment, should only get better as they are broken in. The look good, are available in multiple colors and seemed to help my game while not being overly expensive at $7.99 for a pair. Despite the irregularities in their size and the angle of the tip, it did not seem to make a difference while I was playing. If you have the extra cash, you can purchase them in both red and black and have a set of sticks (including the originals) for any occasion. If you don’t have extra money lying around, you could do without these, but I would strongly suggest them if you need a replacement set.

Where to Find/Buy
The Rock Band Replacement Drum Sticks can be found at Amazon and the Official Store on the Rock Band Site.

If you have a gaming related product or accessory that you would like to see featured in Hooked Up, please contact the Dan for future consideration

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