Picture: Beat Saber
A Beat Saber fan shares the development of the iconic VR rhythm game from the first test version to today’s VR hit.
Beat Saber is one of the most successful and influential VR games of all time. Since its release in May 2018, it has inspired millions of players to smash cubes with virtual lightsabers to infectious music. But how has the game changed from its first test version to its release? And what can we expect in the future?
To celebrate Beat Saber’s fifth birthdaya fan has created a YouTube playlist that traces the game’s development from the first test version in 2016 to the finished game in 2018.
The playlist consists of 17 videos. It includes a recording of the first test version, gameplay footage from various stages of development, as well as teasers and previews.
From idea to hit: the story of Beat Saber
Beat Saber was developed by Czech developers Ján Ilavský and Vladimír Hrinčár. The two have known each other since childhood and started programming games together. They got the idea for Beat Saber while experimenting with VR headsets and lightsabers.
Using the Unity game engine, they programmed the first version of the game in just four weeks. A Youtube video of their work attracted a lot of attention and helped them fund the game.
For the game’s music, they collaborated with musician Jaroslav Beck. Ilavský and Hrinčár refined the gameplay and added new features such as game modes, obstacles, and bombs. In May 2018, they released an Early Access version of the Beat Saber on Steam and received a lot of positive feedback from the VR community.
By the way, if you want to play Beat Saber in its original look, you now have the opportunity to do so.
Acquisition by Meta: A stroke of luck for Beat Games
The two developers continued to work on their game, bringing it to other platforms like PlayStation VR and Oculus Quest. They collaborated with various music labels and artists to create new music packages for the game.
At the end of 2019, Ilavský and Hrinčár’s development studio Beat Games was acquired by Meta. This gave them significantly more resources to further develop the game. Beat Saber went on to be one of Meta’s biggest hits.
A milestone for VR: the importance of Beat Saber.
Beat Saber is not only an entertaining VR game, but also a milestone in the VR industry. With its easy-to-learn but challenging gameplay, it shows that VR games can appeal to a wide audience.
Beat Games has announced that new content is coming to Beat Saber, including music packs, a level editor, and a multiplayer mode. Beat Saber is available on the Quest 2, Quest Pro, PSVR, and PC VR. Beat Saber is also coming to the PSVR 2, but the release date is unknown.
The detailed story of how Beat Saber became a virtual reality super hit can be read in the linked article.
Buy Quest 2, Quest Pro & Prescription Lenses
You can read all about the Meta Quest 2 and Meta Quest Pro in the linked reviews.
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Buy Playstation VR 2, PS5 & Prescription Lenses
All information about Sony’s VR headset can be found in our Playstation VR 2 review. The PSVR 2 is currently only available from the Playstation Store. You will also need a Playstation 5.
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