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Game review: Soundart (PC VR)

28 Apr 2020

Soundart joins Audioshield and the revered Beat Saber as another music-based VR game-come-dance-fitness title.

The VR equivalent of the Guitar Hero/Rock Band craze of a decade ago, the VR hitting-things-to-music genre shows no signs of abating. And it’s understandable.

I played Soundart on a Vive Cosmos with the tracking mod that is part of the Vive Cosmos Elite kit. Apart from Valve’s own Index VR kit, which is not officially available in the A/NZ region, you’ll not find a better VR setup offering both a high-resolution display and a room-scale experience with tracking precision down to the millimetre.   

Soundart swapped my Vive controllers for a pair of swords - which I then swapped out for a fabulously awesome, huge pair of metal fists and then some burning torches. There are a number of options for your percussive tool. 

The game is, as these types of titles usually are, rather simple. And to be fair, that’s part of the appeal.

Players are confronted with a tunnel, along which approach squares that appear in time with the music. Using your VR controllers, you have to hit squares as they reach the petal-like frame in front of you. There are combinations that need to be struck with both hands, and linked squares that need to be hit in a sweeping motion. There’s also a combination that needs to be dealt with by a double thrusting movement.

The game comes with a number of music tracks to choose from and a variety of arena themes. As well as the included music, players can select music from their own library on their hard drive. The game did a great job of matching tracks from my music library with the rhythm of the approaching squares. The ability to easily use your own music without modding the game cannot be overstated.  

As well as the regular mode, the game also has a dance mode whereby players can, at the indicated moment, freestyle their hand and head movements for extra points.  It will give you a workout, from a sedate warmup on Normal to a heart-pounding/potential heart attack on the harder settings setting. 

The Tron-inspired vector-like visuals are very fitting. The graphics look nice without cluttering the view. 

Soundart allows players to incorporate their own avatars into the game for spectators to view whilst played. Aimed more at the streaming market than solo players, it’s a nice touch.

I’ve got to say that Soundart will be replacing Audioshield as my go to VR rhythm game. It’s just so moreish, especially when using your own music. As with many VR titles, the developers are refining the game, continuously. And, with that in mind, I’d say that Soundart was definitely one to watch.