Since the release of Guitar Hero, Rock Band, Dance Dance Revolution, and many other music games, there has always been a possibility of exploiting how the consoles can generate a proper utilization of their interfaces to make instruments and music possible on a massive scale. We have seen many examples of this on several of the systems that were released directly on the hardware that forms part of the games that we mentioned before. Games that allow the user to interface directly with the game by having a version of the instrument they are playing as a way of a control system.
This however has proven its limitations overtime, if not new releases are made, or in the tendency of the industry they release a new version of the game, with a new instrument, this make the game more and more costlier overtime and the people less motivated to buy them. Because they do not want to spend additional money in new instruments, they are going to be using in only one game on one expansion and never going to use it again.
Virtual Reality in this case, has changed the game considerably, because now in Virtual Reality console systems come now you have the possibility of having the same instrument in the game without needing an additional interface outside of the one provided in the VR headset.
What we have today is a possible rebirth and revitalization of the musical general in consoles by having this virtual reality games, where you can use an instrument or do some certain actions through your movement, that resembles grabbing the Guitar Hero plastic guitar and playing yourself.
We have seen today many of the games that represent this new avenue on virtual reality, that can make a case for people to buy the systems for the first time, to recreate their experiences in their favorite games where rhythm is important.
In this article we are going to show you the most important games that we consider are the best for using the VR systems, that take into consideration how a musical game can also be something more than following some notes in a screen.
1. Beat Saber. The must have of the list
Practically the most recent example that we have that music games in the PSVR has a new wave of popularity that has allowed this type of games to be reconsidered by the users and also to prove the different avenues of creativity that can be made to make this type of games more popular. Beat Saber, as any other musical game, has a number of levels of difficulty, 5 in total where the players can be testing their own abilities gradually or following the modes of play where there is a natural progression of the type of songs that are being used.
Also as well there is a number of levels in each song where the notes that must be hit above of under the player an also in the laterals, using the possibilities of degrees of freedom of the control in the game, to take advantage of the issues that allow the player to move their sabers to hit the notes in an adequate way or even favoring some degree of creativity.
Regarding to the weapons utilize in this game, the sabers that resemble the famous weapons of Star Wars, there is one of each color for each hand, one red and one blue, more specifically these are ones that also dictate which notes are coming in which direction an how to be hit by the player. But even more to increase the difficulty on the game and that depends on the level that has been chosen, there are different objects that cannot be hit, because are used as distractions, that if they are hit will end on loosing some or even all the points and breaking the rhythm of the player.
It is a game that has a single player mode and also a multiplayer local component, that allows many players to share a screen for playing the different songs in their difficulty levels. There have been also the release of additional content that has been considered as a true expansion of the game’s capabilities. As well there is also the development of new forms of style of the player, that could be using a possible 360-degree mode for more advanced VR headsets such as the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index among others. The game is widely available on the majority of VR headsets, including the PSVR, Steam VR, Oculus Rift and Quest with their respective platforms and Windows.
2. Rock Band VR. Putting the band back together
The Rock Band series of games always had that element that distinguish them from any other music game in the market. Because not only they have special controllers, a very good selection of tracks, an even a legion of fans that always were making astonishing videos of dominating the most difficult songs in the entire track list. The Rock Band games with all its components, complications and even gimmicks, made you feel like a real rock star, a person who was in front of the band chanting the songs, the incredible battery player who always knew how to keep the electricity of the concert going, the furious bassist and the dynamic guitar player were always there able to actually make the band work and that sensation you had it on every single level that you played again, even in the basics.
Good news then is that the band is back together, but now on VR headsets, Rock Band VR in many occasions successfully brings back that feeling and sensation of being in the front of the most popular rock band in the planet. You alone are part of the process of creating music an playing accordingly to actually hit the notes to make the emotion and the score rise up as part of the process of this games that always is so satisfactory for their fans. This time however, you do not need additional controller, as we said before VR headsets and VR controllers, can convert themselves into any instrument and it is needed in the game itself. However in the version for the oculus headsets, they are accessories that are included in the version for this system, that in certain degrees a similar to the old plastic instruments that you bought on every instance of rock band.
It is again that it is very compelling on the way of recreating the old style of the games in the consoles when this franchise was in the top of its popularity, the colors , the noises, the settings, the track list and all those elements are present to give you the proper experience of a music game that it is the text definition of one. For the moment the game only works with the system of the guitar, but it maintains the same characteristics as ever for its operation when playing, with different types of bonus according to the chords played in a perfect synchronicity.
The difference in this case is that the experience is more immersive because it accentuates the issue of you being the front man of the band, so you are constantly being seen by the audience and in the different menus you are deciding what type of track you are going to play or continue the progression of the mode that you are playing. With a total of 60 songs, from artists like Aerosmith and David Bowie, there is no classic tracks that will ensure the great amount of hours of fun that you are going to have, and the old nostalgic feeling that you will recreate with this VR version of a classic game.
3. Thumper. Action through rhythm, music and dazzling lights
This is the game that can define for you the element of a rhythm videogame. A conceptual vision of a rhythm game that at the same time is a psychedelic experience that it is easy to see but difficult to explain to anyone who has not seen this game before.
Thumper is a game that by using what its developers call “rhythm violence” manages to achieve a singular experience that combines sight, sound and rhythm in a particular way that distinguishes far and above from any other game that it is in the PSVR system catalog. Visually is an experience that again that it is not easily definable because your character is a silver beetle, that is always going through a track where the different rhythms go through lanes similar like in a rock band game, but the differences similarities end there.
The rhythms become stronger and faster, the action relentless, the surroundings weirder and more claustrophobic or more open depending on the level. Thumper manages to put the player into a species of cyberpunk fantasy that it is played by rhythms that it is from a different era where electronic music is the main general that gives the action its depth and force.
Through 7 worlds, there is some traps and interactions with different rhythms that had to be hit to achieve the next level or next iteration of the track and every single one varies considerably, from highly extended and wide open, small tunnels to different elements that also uniting themselves into the characteristic that makes this game very unique in the catalog of VR games in the PSVR. The game is considerably difficult, because by using the concept of rhythm violence, there is a constant attack to the senses of the player, this game can be played on a screen or in the PSVR, but the most of the experience is going to be obtained by the platform that it was originally designed. The PSVR makes the experience completely different because by being in front of the thumper you are seeing all the lights, movements and feeling the pulses that are going to be thrown at you as a part of each level. This is a game that uses rhythm to make progression and to do different aspects of music that are not easily replicable on any other game that is out right now.
4. Audica. The rhythm of the bullets.
Rhythm shooter, this is other of the innovations that resume games are being shown in the PSVR, to showcase the abilities of the technology to combine generous to give us different perspectives on how to mix music with other types of games to create specific experiences that innovate in the form of showing how VR games represent knew creativity on how to allow the developers and the players to see new worlds in different perspectives.
This is a game that by taking the ancient mechanics of the shooting galleries, combines them into a single package of presentation that allows the player to be standing while the controllers that its using synchronized to the PlayStation move controllers, can allow the player to shoot different targets that are coordinated to the music that it is sounding with loud noises of electronic and other types of generous that makes this experience decisively futuristic and cyberpunk in many of the elements that present it’s innovations as a game.
One of the most curious issues with this game is that it is developed by the same studio that made the Guitar Hero and Rock Band games, giving you a proper background of experience to have our refined musical game experience from one of the studios that are responsible for creating this type of games on the first place. This is a game that a specializes on giving you short levels but quite intense in their content and visual stimuli, every level lasts three minutes, because it is the length of the song that it is being heard. The targets synchronize directly to the song and they are going to vary along with the difficulty level, the complexity of the track and also how far are these targets into the song, indicating that the most complex moments of the game come out when the songs are in its apex. This is a game that in certain resemblances looks like a version with pistols of Beat Saber, given the complexity and the movements that the player has to make to achieve hitting the notes and the accords that are happening inside the track that they are going.
Every level can be replayed indefinitely, and different variations are going to be standing on every form of target that is presented to you depending on the song that you have chosen to play. However in the process of uniting a shooter with a rhythm game, it does not work completely well as both, and being some elements and point it becomes a mixed experience, that can be frustrating for new players , and also two different elements that can be off putting to some people who is trying to play this game and cannot adapt themselves to the velocity of the reactions that it is needed, a very complex game that it is quite ambitious that in certain way achieve its objectives.
5. Rez Infinite. To the Cyberspace and Beyond!
For the PSVR we have a remake of one of the classic games of the Dreamcast and PlayStation 2, this new version of the game is a mix between a remaster an also part of a sequel. That takes the elements that were present in the original Rez game and present it with new mechanics and dynamics that are more related to the present generation of consoles. The cyberspace theme of the game, has been made more modernized and additionally capable of taking in capacity the players into this third person dynamic, to enjoy more clearly the graphics that make this game so famous in 2002.
This is a game that in its process of modernization to the newer generation, gave a new level of the controls by using the motion detection of the headset, to generate a perspective about the character moving into the world. This gives an additional level of difficulty of the game, that it is increasingly more disorienting given the cyberspace an all the elements that float around you that try to impede your mission.
This is a more a blend of a music and rhythm game, because the elements of the enemies, the environment and even the character, fluctuate because of the music that it is sounding in the background by altering also its setting. The music batteries electronic and with many tonalities and characteristics of this type of music, it is a visually very interesting game, that takes elements from the matrix , the lawnmower man , and many sci-fi classics that are all combined together in an interesting format when we are navigating this space of information but also with a dark context that our character must go through in order to achieve its mission.
Feel the rhythm and Enjoy!