Double Fine Debuts Weird Motion Rhythm Game Thing

By Nathan Grayson on March 21st, 2013 at 7:00 pm.

I'm still not entirely sure I didn't mean to write 'Rez creator Tetsuya Mizuguchi' in that headline.

I wish I could live my life as eclectically as Double Fine develops games. If that were the case, they’d call me Nathan Grayson, bull-fighting harmonica fencer astronaut crocheter cowboy hat pterodactyl extraordinaire. And I’d be like, “Oh you guys” while tightrope tapdancing over the mouth of an active volcano. But alas, that’s not the case, so I must instead live vicariously through Double Fine, brain exploring heavy metal demigod mech walker of Russian dolls on Sesame Street. Such is my lot in life. Oh well. That said, I can’t complain about a lack of variety, and Double Fine’s latest may be the furthest outside its increasingly amorphous box yet. In short, Dropchord‘s a psychedelic rhythm visualizer thing that’s controlled by a motion device said to be “200 times” more accurate than Kinect. Wait, that wasn’t very short at all.

Hooray! That trailer explained precisely nothing about how the game will actually work by utilizing a series of confusing rapid-fire cuts. I love it when trailers do that. If nothing else, however, we at least know that a) PC is one of its main platforms and b) it’s coming from the team behind Kinect Party and Double Fine Happy Action Theater. Also, there are circles.

Leap, on the other hand, looks to be a fairly standard but (at least, if its grandiose claims are true) incredibly accurate motion sensor that rests at the base of your monitor. I’m faaaaaaaar from sold on motion control, but I do have to admit that it does – at least, in theory – wave away my objections to Kinect and its flaily, faily ilk. Give me enough precision to track my individual cells and take away the requirement that my gaming space be the size of a regulation elephant pen, and I might at least consider.

Regardless, it’s Double Fine dreaming up a rhythm game. Say what you will about Tim Schafer’s ragtag band of rabble-rousing rapscallions, but they don’t often do things the “normal” way. So color me intrigued, if not overly enthused. I suppose we shall, as the kids of these technomagic times are putting it in their strange new parlance, see.

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27 Comments »

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  1. Hoaxfish says:

    Don’t really know what to think of this game… I don’t think of Double Fine when I want electrodancewubstep epileptic wagglan.

    The Leap Motion thing sounds fun, in the same way Kinect is… questionable for actual games.

  2. rustybroomhandle says:

    “controlled by a motion device said to be “200 times” more accurate than Kinect. ”

    So, a mouse then?

  3. Bhazor says:

    “controlled by a motion dev-”

    Thats all I need to know, moving on.

    • guygodbois00 says:

      Same here.

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      Continuity says:

      I understand the sentiment but I’m actually quite excited for the Leap, though admittedly primarily for its potential fusion with the Rift. I’m very likely to get a Leap so I might just get this game for giggles.

    • solidsquid says:

      Leap seems to track just your hand gestures rather than your whole body and includes finger movements, so it’s potentially more usable than things like Kinect (or at least is able to be used while sitting down). Still not sold, but for a rhythm game it could be workable, especially if they do Theremin Hero

    • El_Emmental says:

      You don’t want to muscle-up your forearms ? Gorillas arms are the new thing these days, you’re clearly missing out !

    • JBantha says:

      Being it 2D I can’t see why won’t would we able to play it with a webcam like playing lemmings.

  4. Feferuco says:

    How many games are they working on currently?

    • Xocrates says:

      That we know of? Two: This and the kickstarter adventure.

      Of course, that’s not counting games they’re actively supporting, and any unannounced games.

      They have released a lot of them in recent times though.

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      mrwonko says:

      If their past is any indication, about four so that one failing won’t kill them. I think the Adventure’s team is growing though, so it may be less.

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      DrollRemark says:

      Whatever they come up with this fortnight.

    • Niko says:

      What about Brazen?

  5. Crosmando says:

    Haha, oh wow, DoubleFine really are taking their fanboys for a ride. Porting some game over to PC, making a console platformer for Sega (before it’s designer left the studio), and now some unrelated side-project. 3.2 million + Paypal revenue and nothing about their point-and-click adventure game. Meanwhile many games funded on Kickstarter around the same time have had gameplay videos or even working prototypes out for months.

    • Brun says:

      I’m kind of having the same thoughts. DFA was one of the earliest truly successful Kickstarters – and yet we’ve heard almost nothing about it since then.

    • Zacqary Adam Green says:

      Um. You have been watching the extensive video series detailing every aspect of the development of Reds, right?

      • SouperMattie says:

        Am guessing Crosmando and Brun were not backers, in which case – it’s true there haven’t been a lot of *public* updates. That’s not completely surprising, because the insights into the development process were supposed to be part of the reward for actually backing.

        As a backer myself, the accompanying documentary video series is fascinating has been worth the price of admission alone, totally ignoring the fact I’ll eventually get a game as well.

    • Xocrates says:

      I know right? It’s almost like they have multiple teams and multiple sources of income.

      I mean, it’s not like they’ve released about a dozen hours of video, plus multiple text updates to their backers or anything.

      • haze4peace says:

        Don’t you know? Companies can do only one thing at a time… only one!

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      Ksempac says:

      Df made the choice of only giving updates to their backers. That’s against current conventional wisdom about how you should run your kickstarter, but you shouldn’t forget two things
      First there were the first one to try this big ks thing, so they improvised and the model has been improved since that by others
      Second, a major part of the Kickstarter pitch was “see the game as it’s being done or see us crash” with 2 players production getting a big chunk of the money to make a documentary.

      That’s actually the reason i backed them, as I’m not a fan of point and clicks. I’m very happy with that choicest : they release one main video every month and several side video from to time.

      • InternetBatman says:

        Exactly, most KS implicitly give extra information as a reward. It was a major part of Doublefine’s explicit rewards.

      • neolith says:

        Same here. I am VERY happy with having backed the project just because of the excellent coverage via the videos. Getting to watch fourty minutes of what they are actually doing every six weeks or so is awesome. I wish more of the big kickstarters were offering that on this scale. The videos are well worth the money alone and I would instantly back any other DF project no matter what it’s about as long as they’ll document the whole process again.

      • solidsquid says:

        Being honest I only really supported their Kickstarter so I could get the documentary, the game looks interesting but not something I’d go out my way for but, even if it bombs, I got something for my money out of the documentaries. I’d say it’s a shame more Kickstarters don’t do the same, but Two Player can only do so much I guess and they seem to be doing a fantastic job of game industry documentaries

  6. Yanko says:

    I’m doing one too (still in alpha).

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwoBD_Yhjgs

    The Leap is an amazing device, and it’s not that expensive.

    I’m really glad they released the trailer AFTER I got plugged on Gizmodo.br, or I’d never stand a chance! hahah

  7. Josh W says:

    I never even heard about this leap thing, it sounds wonderful. Firing the sensor at a space I can interact with at my leisure makes much more sense that just firing it invasively into my room. And of course, fine grained interaction using the two parts of the body best set up for it is pretty great too.