You've been logged out of GDC Vault since the maximum users allowed for this account has been reached. To access Members Only content on GDC Vault, please log out of GDC Vault from the computer which last accessed this account.

Click here to find out about GDC Vault Membership options for more users.


The Number One Educational Resource for the Game Industry

Session Name:

2 Immersive 4 VR: Reinventing 'Rock Band'


Developers have spared no processing power in search of immersive "presence", that white whale of VR. However, Harmonix's experience in working on 'Rock Band VR' shows that the immersive flow state induced by action gameplay can actually inhibit "presence"; how can a player feel present in the moment if they're hyper-focused on responding to visually-oriented, millisecond-sensitive gameplay challenges originally designed for flat screens? Thus far, most VR experiences have avoided this paradox by eschewing mechanical depth, but Harmonix believes there are other options. This talk provides a framework for evaluating the trade-offs between mechanical depth and presence while discussing how we reinvented the classic 'Rock Band' franchise in order to resolve this implicit tension in VR by utilizing other sensory channels and somatic cognitive processes.

Did you know free users get access to 30% of content from the last 2 years?

Get your team full access to the most up to date GDC content

  • GDC 2017
  • Matt Boch
  • Harmonix Music Systems
  • free content
  • Design
  • Design