Review: Harmonix Music VR (PS4).
Virtual reality is the perfect place for game experiments. Despite the imperfections of this technology, it is still a place to be in the game and perceive it completely differently. This was the premise of the Harmonix team, deciding to create Harmonix Music VR (PS4).
Harmonix Music VR (PS4) is not a game. I wouldn’t even call it an interactive demo or a collection of mini-games. It’s easier for me to describe it as a set of experimental projects that somehow use virtual reality – more or less successfully. It’s just a pity that you have to pay for it, because I can’t find a reason why I would recommend buying a set of four VR experiments.
The whole thing is based primarily on music. Regardless of the option we choose, the soundtrack chosen by the developer is heard in the background. We can also dump our own MP3 songs onto a flash drive if what is in the game does not suit us. Why do this? I don’t know, maybe because it’s more fun to spend time with the music we like.
The first of the modes is one location (beach), where, with the help of head movements, we can fire individual visualizations that react to the music played. Yes that’s all. We are to sit down and relax while watching the show available in an ordinary media player … but here it takes place in virtual reality.
Later we have something better. With the help of PS Move controllers we can draw in three dimensions, using the available brushes and objects. Unfortunately, the maximum number of them on the board is limited, but you can create some basic drawings. Of course, that also reacts to the music. I spent several dozen minutes in this, trying to translate my lack of talent into pretty drawings and, despite my failure, I know that the movements are read perfectly.
Something… strange waited in the line afterwards. In a small room there are puppets that we can animate by moving their limbs. When the music starts playing, the puppets dance, and we are at their house party. It is also possible to move behind the console and twist, sound the horn or change the playback tempo. The third view is the diorama where we can move the puppets as we like. To be completely honest, this is weird.
At the very end, I checked the visualizer. We fire up and sit in a tunnel of graphic effects changing at the pace of the music. It is like a bit of a psychedelic trip, and being in a state that engages your chosen drugs, it can be an interesting visual experience. Except that apart from sitting, listening to music and looking around, there is nothing to do here. The more that there is a lack of more variety in visualizations.
If Sony got along with Harmonix and added it for free when buying PS VR, I would not turn my nose, because this is a good presentation of the possibilities offered by virtual reality. But I am not able to find a reason to pay PLN 63 for it. Seriously.
The game was reviewed on PlayStation 4 Pro.