Although perhaps best known for their Dance Central and Rock Band franchises, Harmonix had been in the rhythm gaming genre long before the 2005 release of the original Guitar Hero. Now, the musically inclined company is going back to its roots and looking to reboot their cult favorite, Amplitude for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 through the power of Kickstarter.
Originally released in 2003 for the PlayStation 2, Amplitude was a rhythm based game that, unlike its successors, didn’t utilize any sort of unwieldy peripheral. Players piloted their “Beat Blaster” down six separate tracks, with each track representing a specific section of a song, whether it be guitar or vocals. Easy to pick-up, but extremely difficult to master, this format was later revived by the company in 2012 for the release of Rock Band Blitz.
Instead of simply releasing a sequel to the game, Harmonix is looking to the crowd in order to re-release the original Amplitude, this time with the benefit of over a decade’s worth of experience and technology. Besides the typical high definition paint job, this re-release will take advantage of the company’s improved “beatmatching” system, which will improve timing windows, as well as help the game run smoothly on both the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4.
The biggest change coming to this re-release, though, is the fact that the soundtrack will be completely re-done. The original release of Amplitude featured both in-house Harmonix bands like Freezepop, as well as bigger acts such as Weezer, David Bowie and Blink-182. Rather than go through the tedious process of licensing music again, the company has instead opted to create an all-new soundtrack.
I was a huge fan of both Amplitude and its predecessor Frequency back when they were originally released on the PlayStation 2. The tough, but exciting rhythm gameplay combined with the trippy visuals made me a huge fan of the team at Harmonix. From there, I purchased every Guitar Hero (even the less than stellar Neversoft ones), as well as every Rock Band and a plethora of the DLC. I’ve spent a ton of money on music games at this point, but I honestly wouldn’t mind shelling out a bit more for this one.
In order to be successfully funded, Amplitude must reach a goal of $775,000 by May 23. Are you interested in contributing to this HD re-release Kickstarter? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.