This is SoundStage, from solo developer Logan Olson, a VR application that aims to let musicians build their own dream music studio, allowing them to play, record and mix from within VR on the HTC Vive.
Being a musician can be an expensive, space consuming activity one in which your ultimate creative ideals may well be limited by your budget and access to studio equipment. So why not lift all restrictions by building your own virtual studio in VR?
Logan Olson is trying to make that happen with his solo project SoundStage, due for Steam Early Access release on July 7th. Olson classes himself as somewhat of a VR developer veteran, but he feels that new consumer VR platforms like SteamVR and the HTC Vive are magic the development possibilities of VR accessible. “I’ve been doing VR for years, but new platforms like the Vive allow independent developers like me to realize ideas without the need for equipment you’d only find in a lab or giant company until recently. That means I could finally build SoundStage, which was inspired by the giant room-scale synthesizers you see in classic rock concerts,” says Olson.
Hence SoundStage, a virtual space where you can surround yourself with drum kits, synthesizers and hook them all up by hand in VR. Interestingly, Olson believes that this cutting edge technology may actually be a gateway to recapturing some of the old studio magic. “Those old synths literally enveloped the player in this nest of wires and dials,” says Olson, “Now you can make those sounds on a desktop computer or even your iPad, but the physicality of those machines is lost. This project started as a way to recapture that feel, but once I started building, I realized I wasn’t just limited to synths. Suddenly, I could create 3D theremins, maracas, sequencers, and anything else you can imagine performing on.”
But of course, why limit yourself to reality based nostalgia when VR lets you do anything you like? Olson has no intention of missing out on an opportunity to do something in VR, only possible in VR. “The development between now and the end of Steam Early Access will focus on making more instruments that are only possible in virtual or augmented reality.”
SoundStage hits Steam Early access on the 7th July for $9.99 for HTC Vive and SteamVR.