Capturing the likeness of a band that's spent the past two decades rifling through Manic Panic and tattoo ink at a breakneck pace was one of the biggest challenges facing the designers of "Green Day: Rock Band," and Green Day were more than ready to put them to the test.
"I think we were sort of challenging the programmers and the game designers, like, 'OK, but can you do this?' " drummer Tre Cool said. "And they're like, 'Sure!' 'Well ... can you do this?' 'Yeah!' 'OK, but it's got to be ... ' 'Yeah!' They were really good."
"I thought we could have a lot of fun with 'Rock Band' and highlight different times in our career," bassist Mike Dirnt said. "I thought it was a really cool way to kind of show people, you know, just different things [about the group] in a format the size of a TV set."
It seems that — nearly as much as their music — Green Day's career can be broken down into specific looks too: the baby dreadlocks and eye-popping dye jobs of the Dookie days; the bottle-blond, leather-jacket look of the Warning era; or the black spikes (and even blacker eyeliner) of American Idiot, to name just a few. And the designers of "Rock Band" knew that — which is why all those looks made the cut. Plus a whole lot more, too.
"Different details come up in the game that go from, you know, 1994 through 2000. Plus, what year is it now? 2009, 2010?" frontman Billie Joe Armstrong laughed. "And just kind of seeing the different tattoos and wearing a T-shirt I remember. Like, the T-shirt that I wore, and I wrote 'Stupid' on it and put an arrow up to my face. And that's the kind of details that they seem to nail."
And while the hairstyles and tattoos might be instantly recognizable to Green Day fans, there's another — slightly newer — detail that designers decided to include almost as a joke: the band's Drunk Bunny, which started making appearances during American Idiot performances and has since become a fan favorite. And, yes, his inclusion made all the difference to the guys in the band.
"Yeah, that's great too. Sometimes when we were playing festivals, whoever was playing right before us weren't quite getting the crowd going, so I think we ended up with a friend of ours just putting a bunny costume on and said, 'Hey, go warm up the crowd!' " Armstrong smiled. "So, you know, they'd just down beers and get everybody to do the YMCA, you know? It's definitely a nice touch."
MTV News is celebrating the release of "Green Day: Rock Band" with a week of special coverage. For more on the game, check out our Multiplayer blog. For a chance to win a "Rock Band" guitar signed by the guys in Green Day, head over to the MTV Newsroom blog.