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Rock band developer Harmonix’s new Fortnite music mode will support instrument controllers

Fortnite Festival – the game’s new rhythm-based mode developed by Rock Band studio Harmonix – will let you use your plastic guitars and drums in the future.

Adding support for instrument controllers is “a priority”, according to an FAQ page for the mode published by Epic Games.

Fortnite Festival went live on Saturday, and lets you tap along to music using buttons on your controller or keyboard (as in, a keyboard for your PC). It is very like Rock B and, which is perhaps not surprising, with tracks available for different instruments and with various difficulty options.

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The worlds of Lego and Fortnite collided last week, ahead of Fortnite Festival’s own big debut.

“Does Fortnite Festival support instrument controllers?” the mode’s FAQ page asks. “Not at launch, but it’s a priority for the team and currently under development,” comes the reply. “We’ll have more to share in 2024.”

Fortnite Festival features a rotating range of free tracks to play along with – currently including Lady Gaga, Olivia Rodrigo and The Killers – with the option to buy any you want to keep. There’s also a season pass running until February containing a character skin for The Weeknd which you can use in Fortnite’s battle royale mode, as well as some other virtual instrument cosmetics and more music packs such as Gangnam Style.

Festival also encompasses a more casual game mode option, The Jam Stage, a social space where nearby players can use tracks they own to create mashups and remixes. So you can, for example, play the lead guitar melody of a Queens of the Stone Age track (while dressed up as Peter Griffin) and have the game mix this with nearby people playing the drum line or vocals of Mr. Brightside. It’s a bit like Harmonix’s own Fuser, which sadly went offline last year.

Fortnite fully rebirthed itself into a multi-game platform last week with the addition of Fortnite Festival, Mario Kart meets Rocket League mode Rocket Racing and the Minecraft-like Lego Fortnite.

These three new modes sit alongside the game’s popular battle royale mode, original Save the World PVE offering and its Creative side that lets you create your own experiences.

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