Harmonix’s VR Game Audica Looks to Give Beat Saber a Run for its Money
Fans of rhythm-based VR games like Beat Saber should definitely keep their eye on Audica, a new game from Harmonix releasing on March 7.
Beat Saber has grown to become one of the most popular titles within the ever-growing VR gaming scene as music-based rhythm games have turned out to be an excellent fit for the medium. Harmonix, a developer lauded for rhythm games like Rock Band, Amplitude, and Guitar Hero looks to be entering the ring next month. Today, the developer announced Audica, a “rhythm shooter” that definitely evokes titles like Beat Saber at first glance and will be entering Early Access on March 7.
Instead of lightersabers, Audica has players control “rhythm blasters” that players can shoot and smash distinct blue and orange targets with. Of course, this will all be based on whatever song players are listening to, with the game’s base soundtrack set to feature a lot of EDM from “some of the world’s most popular electronic artists.”
According to the game’s Steam page, the Early Access version of Audica will feature 10 songs with each song being playable on four difficulty levels. There will also be only one weapon set and environment to play in at launch; fortunately, the game’s online leaderboards should be pretty fleshed out. Harmonix intends to include a campaign, a practice mode, and bring the song total to 25 songs before Audica’s 1.0 release.
Harmonix Co-Founder and Audica Creative Director Alex Rigopulos actually talked a bit more about the development of this VR game in a recent interview with GameInformer. Apparently it started life as a PvP first-person shooter called Chroma in 2014. The developers decided to return to the idea as VR was gaining traction and apparently the results were great.
“We stripped away all the stuff that was encumbering the music shooter idea from Chroma, and just went 100 percent focus on gameplay and sensory immersion. We’re thrilled by the results,” said Alex. The also revealed the inclusion of the following five songs to GameInformer:
- 1788-L & Blanke “Destiny”
- Alison Wonderland “I Want U”
- Donna Summer “I Feel Love (Afrojack Remix)”
- James Egbert “The Space”
- Savant “Splinter”
Below, you can check out the announcement trailer for Audica as well as the game’s first screenshots. Audica will be entering Early Access for both Oculus Rift and HTC Vive on March 7. According to the game’s Steam page, Audica’s full release is coming before the end of 2019, with Harmonix’s Director of Communications Dan Walsh even saying on Twitter that they hope to bring the game to PS VR at that time as well.