A new game called Spin Rhythm XD wants to revitalize the rhythm game genre simply by doing everything right. The control scheme includes several maneuvers that replicate DJ actions that ramp up in complexity. It seems to be working, as the trailer includes several comments that liken the gameplay to actually playing music. Visually, the game ditches the whole "create your custom band" idea in favor of taking players on a musical space odyssey. And it has the involvement of several talented artists thanks to a partnership with Monstercat.
There is a caveat, of course. You have to like the kind of music being spun here. This isn't trying to capture the same audience as Rock Band or Guitar Hero. This is for people who get excited by names like Pegboard Nerds, Tokyo Machine, and Panda Eyes. All of whom contributed some of their known songs, with some even recording original tunes just for this game. Anyone curious about how it all came together can check it out on Steam Early Access starting October 22.
The Early Access version will come with only 15 songs, but there's good reasons for that. For one, some of these artists created new music just for Spin Rhythm XD. New music from known talent kind of needs to be highlighted instead of drowned out in an overcrowded songbook. There's also the fact that the developers made a unique level for each song. Making 15 different environments that flow along with the distinct rhythm of the tune is already an impressive feat.
That all said, the developers are already working on the future of Spin Rhythm XD. A Nintendo Switch version is planned for 2020, and it will have its own Joy-Con/motion/touchscreen controls. The PC version, meanwhile, will launch with MIDI DJ controller support. The Switch version will also launch with 30 songs to coincide with an eventual update to the Early Access version.
Spin Rhythm XD will arrive on Steam Early Access on October 22 in English, Portuguese, and Spanish. The early footage looks promising, but only time (and a hands-on preview) will tell if it can really bring rhythm gaming back to the heights it achieved during its peak.