Punch orbs with your hands, deflect projectiles with laserblades, shoot drones with guns or dance with dragons, using native songs, player created osu! beatmaps or any song from your local music library - in the most advanced VR rhythm game.
All Reviews:
Very Positive (170) - 87% of the 170 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Apr 5, 2016
Developer:
Publisher:

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Virtual Reality is still a new medium and we therefore need to be able to experiment, gather feedback and let content, gameplay and mechanics evolve based on this feedback.

Holodance originally was conceptualized as an episodic game where Episode 1 delivered a story and Episode 2 (which originally was designed as a separate game) was about letting players create content. It turned out that actually Episode 2 should come first, so we're now kind of giving you two games for the price of less than one, at the expense of taking a little longer to complete the whole thing.

Without Early Access, we would have been stuck with the original concept, so it already works really well for us!”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“"Free Mode" can already be considered "released", even though we keep on polishing and improving that part of the game. "Story Mode" still lacks animations, gameplay and music for levels 4-12 (animations are done for Level 5 but we use music from Level 3 there, music for levels 6, 10 and 11 is in the game but animations / voice-acting is missing and gameplay will still be polished).

Our main focus is currently polishing and adding features to Free Mode. Once Free Mode has everything, including the in-VR beatmap and full multiplayer support, we'll go back to finishing Story Mode.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“Free Mode will get an in-VR beatmap editor and improved community features, Story Mode will have full 12 levels (currently 3 finished, 4 more are playable).

We may reset highscores and achievements if we change scoring or balance but of course, you'll keep what you have learned by practicing.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“Update 2018-02-22 (V0.9.0b2): We now also have support for local music with procedural mapping (still experimental), a new "Psychedelic Mode", a mechanic based on Time Dilation where time moves based on your hands movement, laserblades and guns.

Update 2017-12-13 (V0.8.8): Story Mode has received a major polishing round with improved animations that include lip-sync and actual dancing choreographies. Also, we replaced the song in level 1 (the old songs are still available), and are now using improved remixes of the songs in levels 2 and 3. Free Mode has seven "bonus environments" to play in, including two clubbing environments, and a highly polished Music Library.

Update 2016-10-15 (V0.5.8): We have now added a first bonus environment (outside of the original theme of the game) and have added osu! beatmap support. We have also started work on a beatmap editor. The 12 originally planned level environments are complete, music for levels 4, 5, 7, 8 and 9 is licensed but still needs to be integrated into the game (that is one thing we're building the beatmap editor for).

Update 2016-06-12 (Alpha 54): The first three levels are complete and will only have minor changes and major performance improvements. The first level has a bonus song (so there's two songs that you can play with this level). For Levels 6, 10 and 11, there are "spoiler previews" so you can already play those levels but they may still change significantly.

To play all content (2 songs with a single instrument track in Level 1, one song for each Level 2, 3, 6, 10 and 11 with 4 instrument tracks each), you need about 2 hours if you play really well. If you want to master those levels and also get the achievements that are already available, you can spend much more time in the game already.

Multiplayer is still in heavy development and not available in the game.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“Update 2018-02-20: We are now taking the next step with the price and increase it from $14.99 to $19.99. This price will remain until we release from Early Access at $24.99 or $29.99.

Update 2016-10-15: Due to the much larger scope we have now, we'll increase the price from $9.99 to $14.99 shortly. The complete game will probably be $24.99 or $29.99.

Previous description: Early Access purchasers will get the game at 50% of its actual price ($9.99). Once we enter beta (complete game is playable but is still being polished), new purchasers get 25% off ($14.99). Finally, when the game is fully released, we'll charge the actual price: $19.99.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“Our aim is to establish a lively community of players that play the game and give us feedback about the game mechanics, art style and how they can interact with the world. We will publish updates with new features on a regular basis and in some cases also may provide builds with different options so that players can decide which one they like best.

A little note on reviews: While we do read reviews and do our best to gather feedback and improve the game upon feedback through this channel as well, reviews based on bugs are not particularly useful for other players because it's very likely that those bugs will be fixed a week or two later. So in some cases, it may be better to post to the forum and see what becomes of it before writing the game off.”
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Notice: Requires a virtual reality headset. See the VR Support section for more info.

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Recent updates View all (112)

February 6

Holodance 50% off ($9.99) in Lunar New Year Sale and Updates!

Hey everyone,

just in case you missed it: Holodance takes part in the Steam Lunar New Year Sale, so if you don't have it, yet - now's a really good time to get it at a 50% discount (so that's $9.99 instead of $19.99). Please let everyone else know! ;-)

And those coming in from the sale: The default branch has received no updates in the last 6 months because we've been building our own server backend ... but we have a pretty long list of changes, including the long awaited native Oculus support on the beta-branch.

So, if you want to try something new, or if you use a Rift - make sure to opt-in to the beta. If you have never opted-in to a beta, check the Product Beta section in this guide.

A lot of work went into the Octadrop and Guns game mechanics, so be sure to check those out! Also, we're getting new leaderboards :-)

If you are really courageous, try the alphadev-branch: That's the bleeding edge of development and has been updated almost daily during the last two weeks.

And if you have any question - make sure to post them into the Holodance Steam Community forums, or join our official Holodance Discord.
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February 4

Update: Building Our Own Backend Server

This was (and still is) a big one! I actually knew we needed our own backend server for a very long time: One reason Holodance is still only available on Steam is because I heavily relied on the Steamworks backend for leaderboards, achievements and keeping state for players (i.e. progress in the game, mostly for Story Mode). In order to let you play with people on other platforms, like Oculus Home, Windows Store or PlayStation Network, we either need to use a third party service (there are some, like PlayFab or GameSparks, or roll our own.

With our second game, Beat the Rhythm VR, we not only want cross-platform but cross-game: All the community features, like leaderboards, song and beatmap quality rankings, session streams and so forth should be consistent and shared among both games, so that we can have one (hopefully) large community for both games, instead of two smaller, isolated player communities.



And there’s another thing: I’m still working on our own in-VR beatmap editor and the fun with that really only starts when you can conveniently share your hard mapping work with your fellow players. Which opens a whole other can of worms and tricky challenges that need to be faced.

Having our own backend server solves a lot of these issues; even if solving some of these issues makes developing that backend server significantly more complex than just a leaderboard-system.

A little Personal History

Before I started working on VR games full-time in 2015, after several years of doing it “on the side” (since 2007), as freelance software-engineer I had a really decent income. Which was really cool! But that was due to taking whatever software-engineering project came along. That was still kind of fun. But when I’m totally honest, this wasn’t really what I was here for, and I had known that for sure at least since 2007 … but really, as a hunch much much longer. Most of my time, I spent working with databases, Web frontends, early Java days mobile apps, some of which I developed from scratch on my own, some large and complex systems that had grown over many years, that I worked on in small teams.

One reason it took a long while to get started with this was because I knew I’d be facing some old demons when getting back into this, and I honestly wasn’t looking forward to that. While I know I can do these things, and actually do them quite well, I’d honestly rather have paid someone … except I know how much that would cost, and we have to be super-careful with our budget (2018 was twice as good as 2017, and 2017 three times as good as 2016 — but we* still have very little liquid cash and roughly €100K open loans … also, it’s not so hard to double and triple your revenue when you start from a base of roughly €10,000 … per year … revenue).

*we currently actually only means me, working from my basement to be able to sustain the company

When I finally did get started, I first spent a lot of time figuring out which technology stack to use, and learning to use that technology stack. That was fun — I love learning new things, and in terms of server backends and Web development, I was living at least 10 years in the past, probably more like 15 years. Eventually, I got it rolling and we have now had the new leaderboard and progress tracking on the alphadev branch of Holodance for a little while, we also already use it for a little side project based in Beat the Rhythm that I did for money called Beat Challenge or 节奏激战 (this one’s currently only available in China, for the Lenovo Mirage AR headset), and the internal builds of Beat the Rhythm. This is on the beta now for Holodance, so by the time we release Beat the Rhythm, it will have been in production for a little while (you may have noticed that we just pushed the release of Beat the Rhythm from “Fall 2018” to “Spring 2019”).

It’s done … well … almost!
(and we all know what that means ;-) )

The hardest parts are done. Obviously, there is still a lot more work on this end, but I am super-happy that the foundation is there and I can now build out the various systems step-by-step, one at a time.

There was a price to pay: One of the things I really enjoy about developing games is that it’s an incredible creative and lively process. Sometimes, I have an idea of my own, or a request coming in from a player in the middle of the night (Hello Discord), start coding in the morning, and can play test this new idea in the afternoon, to share it with you in the evening. Then, of course, there’s usually several days, sometimes weeks, sometimes months of polishing until it behaves in the most fun way — but it’s usually a fun process that involves designing game play mechanics, coding, visuals and effects, sometimes audio.

I have been missing that during the last few months, and after my last meditation retreat, I took a little break from the server work to play with something new. That will go into Devlog 3, so stay tuned!

One (fairly big) concern …



One final thing, also to get a little discussion going: Until recently, I wanted to use the game play data that we have been keeping on player’s PCs to rebuild the complete history on our server. In other words, upload your game sessions, rebuild the leaderboards from that, basically “migrate” everything. Technically, this is possible, and I could still do it … but there are a few concerns:

  • First of all, it does add a lot of complexity. There are a lot of things to be taken care of, and it would add a significant amount of time just to set up a reliable synchronization mechanism that can handle years worth of gameplay data without interrupting gameplay. We also changed the data format a few times, so that’s also something to be careful about.
  • Then, that data is not necessarily complete or reliable: You can disable recording the movement data, or you might have deleted the GameData folder — when it’s gone, it’s gone. So, the restored history would not be as complete as one would wish for.
  • A related issue: Without the movement data, there is a bit of potential for cheating by messing with the session data. With the new system, we’ll only record your session for the leaderboards if you opt-in to including the movement data. That way, cheating becomes near impossible. But handing that for lots of past (and partially incomplete) data is quite tricky.
  • Finally, there’s the privacy issue: I honestly don’t feel comfortable uploading up to three years of gameplay sessions to a new system without asking (and under current EU privacy laws, that would be illegal, too). But when I ask, I kind of invite people to cheat (say “no” now, mess with the data, then say “yes”). This is much easier with current / future data that is generated while playing.

So, at the moment, I lean towards making this a fresh start, probably even with a few resets during beta, to be able to polish how we store things without having to carry the burden of migrating. When I made some changes to how scoring works, player feedback on “wiping the leaderboards” was fairly positive — Holodance is still in Early Access, Beat the Rhythm not even released, yet, so that kind of thing is not totally unexpected. But still, it’s something I’m not taking lightly (which is also the reason why I haven’t updated the default-branch and only did alphadev- and now beta-updates for about six months).

Let me know what you think!
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Reviews

“At one point, you will effectively dance with dragons, and even get a high-five if you’re good enough.”
4/5 – The VR Base

“With plenty of music variety, your workout is only limited by your music choice. For those who like to dance or like the challenge of sliding and spinning notes this game can become addicting quickly.”
8.5/10 – VR Fitness Insider

“You can play all osu beatmaps, which gives you a huge library of music to choose from. This music VR game has beats perfectly synced to your actions, which makes it really fun. So, definitely a recommendation to buy!”
4/5 – Cas & Chary

About This Game

Holodance was the first VR rhythm game shown to the public, mid 2015. Since then, it has evolved from "Dancing with Dragons" with only a few songs specifically produced for the game in its environmentalism themed Story Mode (WIP, see Early Access), to also letting you play your local music library as well as any of the 60,000 ranked maps for osu! for more than 12,000 songs in Holodance Free Mode:



Play in almost 20 diverse environments, ranging from a tropical beach or underwater environment with dolphins and whales, to trippy abstract tunnels or asteroid fields:



Whether you follow our friendly dragons down the rabbit hole of a potential dystopic future, and get to fistbump Pritvitej along the way (WIP, Early Access), or prefer challenging yourself with high-intensity beatmaps in a Zero Distraction environment and get a nice workout while you're at it - Holodance has you covered. The game even lets you catch those orbs with your head - and if you already have Vive trackers, you can catch them with your feet, too, Kung Fu style:



What is Holodance? Holo obviously was inspired by Holodeck, so imagine "dancing in the Holodeck". Of course, "dancing" just means tuning into the rhythm and freely moving with the music. There are orbs arriving perfectly in sync with the music that you need to catch, and curves you need to follow. But no, we're not gonna tell you how to move because we consider dancing really a free expressive movement of rhythm and joy.

Credits

While there are currently only four people working on the game full-time, it is actually an international collaboration with talents from across the globe. For the full credits, check out our Press Kit.

Mixed Reality, Vive Trackers, Streamer Mode

Holodance has full support for Mixed Reality, using the regular SteamVR quadrant view, MixCast (which requires a subscription but has the nice benefit of doing compositing in-game), and also native LIV integration.

Vive Trackers are not required to play Holodance but if you have two and attach them to your feet, you can catch orbs with your feet. Up to 7 Vive Trackers (3 recommended) are support by the Holodance Avatar system which lets you breathe life into various forms, from Animé characters to sci-fi soldiers. The Avatar system ties into Streamer Mode, which is designed to let spectators watch players from various 3rd person perspectives that can even be switched automatically by the game, perfectly on the beat.

For Arcades and Parties / Demos

We have built-in several features into Holodance to make it work well in demo / party / arcade scenarios. If you enjoy doing demos, or run an arcade, make sure to talk to us.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: 7
    • Processor: i5
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GTX GeForce 970
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 8 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: 10
    • Processor: i5
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GTX GeForce 980 Ti
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 8 GB available space

What Curators Say

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