Beat Games’ wildly popular VR rhythm game has inspired some interesting projects over the years. Here are some of our favorites.
Despite having been released back in 2018, Beat Saber remains one of the most popular games available on VR headsets at the moment. And for good reason.
Beat Games’ expertly crafted VR rhythm game features incredibly addictive gameplay, eye-catching visuals, and a growing catalog of well-known music spanning a wide variety of genres. It’s so popular, in fact, that the game has managed to spawn multiple imitations, some of which are downright hilarious.
First up we have arguably my favorite game on the list, DragonRide VR. Originally released back in August 2020 on SteamVR headsets, TypeEh Studios’ dragon-riding simulator lets you take the reigns of your own magical beast and compete in a variety of unique minigames across six magical worlds. This includes Rhythm Ride, a new Beat Saber-inspired game mode that has you slashing colored balloons to the beat of an epic soundtrack while soaring through the sky on the back of a fire-breathing dragon. There are 25 original songs in total, with support for custom tracks.
For those prone to motion sickness, the game offers five different types of ride styles. Smooth Straight, for example, is perfect for those seeking a conventional rhythm game experience. Wild, on the other hand, introduces more unpredictable flight patterns, resulting in a more challenging experience. Regardless of which style of flight you choose, I challenge you not to crack a smile while playing this pleasantly over-the-top game mode.
DragonRide VR is available now on SteamVR headsets.
Minecraft – Beat Saber
Brought to us by Reddit user u/Swifter1243, this ridiculous mod brings the fast-paced VR rhythm game to life in, you guessed it, Minecraft! The mod was built using a modified version of an existing VR mod called Vivecraft and is supposedly able to convert any Beat Saber song into Minecraft via a custom program.
In a video posted to Reddit, you can see Swifter playing through the song “Haunted Bus” from within the block-like world. Moving forward, the developer plans on introducing several updates and improvements before making the mod available to the public. This includes additional lighting elements, upgraded saber models, Chrome support, and a custom color picker just to name a few.
No word yet on when we can expect to get our hands on this unique Vivecraft mod, though the creator has promised a full release sometime in the near future.
Don’t be fooled by the ridiculous characters and wildly outlandish gameplay, Bizarre Barber is actually meant to serve as a cultural critique of American capitalism. It also happens to feature Beat Saber-style gameplay, only instead of slashing bricks, you’re cutting the unruly hair of mutated human beings throughout a post-apocalyptic landscape.
In this Oculus launchpad title, humanity has retreated underground and mutated into long-necked creatures in desperate need of a good trim. Using your trusty scissors, you’ll chop locks to the beat of a thumping soundtrack as you progress through a series of increasingly difficult levels. Eventually, you’ll find yourself trimming the feathers of drunk birds and cleaning up the fur of mutated cows and flying rats. Trust me, it’s much more fun than it sounds, albeit slightly traumatizing at times.
Miniature Beat Saber
Daniel Beauchamp, aka Pushmatrix, has been taking the web by storm with his series of hilarious VR projects powered by Oculus Quest hand-tracking. Back in May of 2020, the developer released a video showcasing yet another entertaining proof-of-concept, this time using the Quest’s hand-tracking technology to create a miniature version of Beat Saber controlled using the tips of your fingers.
He even went as far as to design a commercial airline environment just to show how well his version of the popular VR rhythm game works in tight spaces. There’s also an Expert Mode which adds a colored saber to each of your ten fingers, resulting in a chaotic mess of neon lights and shattered cubes.
Due to its many similarities with Beat Games’ original VR rhythm game, it’s unlikely we’ll ever get our hands on this entertaining proof-of-concept. If anything, however, Beauchamp’s project does an excellent job at showcasing the incredible potential of hand-tracking technology.
Beat Saber Accordion
Last but not least we have yet another Beat Saber-inspired project from Daniel Beauchamp, one that does away with the games’ conventional neon lightsabers in favor of one of history’s greatest instruments, the accordion. In this polka-inspired VR experience, Beauchamp uses the Oculus Quest Touch controllers to manipulate both ends of a virtual accordion in order to match the corresponding targets flying towards him.
Again, because of its extreme similarities to Beat Saber, we’ll most likely never see a full release of this unique techno-accordion experience. That being said, those interested should definitely consider checking out some of Beauchamp’s publicly available VR projects.
I recommend checking out HandSpace on SideQuest. The free app offers a plethora of bizarre hand-tracking you can experiment with, from floppy hands and fractal hands to wrong hands and kaleidoscope hands just to name a few.
Feature Image Credit: @Pushmatrix via Twitter