‘Rock Band VR’ Announced by Oculus and Harmonix


At The Game Awards 2015, Oculus has announced Rock Band VR, a new title in partnership with Rock Band creator Harmonix.


Taking to the stage after a comedic promo involving the band DragonForce, Oculus founder Palmer Luckey announced that Rock Band would see a virtual reality rendition in Rock Band VR, coming to the Oculus Rift in 2016.

Created by Oculus Studios, the VR company’s first part game studio, and in partnership with Rock Band creator Harmonix, Rock Band VR will make you “feel like you’re standing on stage looking out at the crowd cheering for you,” according to Luckey.

See Also: First Look at ‘Harmonix Music VR’ a Trippy Visualizer for Morpheus from the Makers of Rock Band

While Rock Band could in many ways be a natural fit for VR—a standing experience that doesn’t require much locomotion—it will be interesting to see how Oculus and Harmonix will handle both tracking of the guitar and whether or not players will be expected to be able to play ‘blind’ without seeing their fingers, or if there will be some solution to that problem.

So far the only gameplay revealed was of the guitar instrument, and there is not telling if drums or other Rock Band instruments like the keyboard will be supported, though given that this is a Rock Band game and not Guitar Hero, we can certainly hope. Another unanswered question is whether or not players already invested in Rock Band instruments will have to buy new equipment to be compatible with Rock Band VR.

This article may contain affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and buy a product we may receive a small commission which helps support the publication. See here for more information.

Ben is the world's most senior professional analyst solely dedicated to the XR industry, having founded Road to VR in 2011—a year before the Oculus Kickstarter sparked a resurgence that led to the modern XR landscape. He has authored more than 3,000 articles chronicling the evolution of the XR industry over more than a decade. With that unique perspective, Ben has been consistently recognized as one of the most influential voices in XR, giving keynotes and joining panel and podcast discussions at key industry events. He is a self-described "journalist and analyst, not evangelist."
  • PK

    I don’t play Rock Band, and don’t have much interest to, but obviously this is music he loves and it’s cool to see him bring his personal dreams for the technology to life.


    Palmer & Oculus have stated since day 1 that their goal was to advocate for mass adoption of VR. Between the release of GearVR, and securing titles like Minecraft & Rock Band, they are moving in the right direction. I don’t care about either of these games, but there are millions of gamers who LOVE them, and will be encouraged to enter the Rift.

  • Mark Phillips

    I love this just for the punchline at the end of that video — Palmer and others “becoming the masters” by taking the band’s tour bus for themselves.