Did you find that strange lump of plastic with a hole through it nestled in with your Oculus Touch controllers when you got them last week? Keep hold of it; you might need it early next year.
As you probably discovered upon closer inspection, that little add-on is designed for Harmonix’s Rock Band VR. It houses a single Touch controller, which you fit to the stock of your Rock Band guitar to render it in-game. Recently, Harmonix confirmed that Rock Band VR is coming in early 2017. It also released a very brief look at the game, which shows the set up process you’ll go through with each performance through mixed reality.
Instead of featuring the full band experience, Rock Band VR brings the focus back to the guitar alone. In a new blog, Harmonix detailed how it was expanding playing with the instrument. You’ll still get points for hitting notes on time, but the game will also reward you for using different chords and build a combo with them, allowing you to customize how you play.
The game also features a new Performance Mode in which you’re pitted as the lead guitarist in an up and coming band. Harmonix said to think of the original games as like recording an album, requiring precision and perfection. Rock Band VR, meanwhile should be thought of more like the live performances it tries to encapsulate. The developer said that “you are still scored, but have the freedom to make the experience your own.”
Rock Band VR is expected to feature around 50 – 75 songs when it launches, and there’s the possibility for more downloadable content– something not prominently featured in VR games right now — and perhaps even an expansion to other instruments in future installations. We went hands-on with the game all the way back at GDC and then again at PAX, and it made us feel like a rock god.