T.I., Young Jeezy and Kanye West will all reportedly be featured in the upcoming video game Rapstar which is set to compete against DJ Hero later this year.
The game will aim to draw in a large online community.
Rapstar marks the first game for the newly-formed 4mm Games, a development house created in part by two co-founders of Rockstar Games (Grand Theft Auto). Executive Vice President Paul Coyne says he was astonished that a music game focused on hip-hop hadn’t been created sooner. Each performance is recorded using cameras for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Once a song is complete, players can then take a 30-second clip and upload it to the Rapstar community. Coyne sees the game as creating “the music video of the next generation that stars you.” Among some of the other features: A Battle mode where players alternate rhyming lyrics to score the most points; and Freestyle, a mode that lets players perform their own raps and songs over instrumental tracks. (USA Today)
While focusing on hip-hop heads, the game will also cater to a larger audience.
“I think, at the highest level, we’re trying to make a game that appeals to a very broad audience of anyone who has really enjoyed hip-hop music at any point in the last 30 years,” 4mm CEO Nicolas Perrett said in a statement. “That’s a really important thing for all of those fans out there who don’t have a hip-hop game that can encompass that breadth of music across that whole period, all the way through to right this second what’s coming out. Even stuff that’ll be coming out at the very same time the game is coming out.” (XXLMag.com)
Rapstar will feature both old school records and more contemporary cuts.
The demo had eight songs available, with Kanye West’s “Golddigger” and T.I.’s “Whatever You Like” amongst them. In terms of presentation, Rapstar‘s not so different than other karaoke-style games. Lyrics appear on-screen with timed prompts and players are scored according to how their performance matches the track. Other artists included Pete Rock & CL Smooth, Young Jeezy, Biggie Smalls and more. (Crispy Gamer)
The game will go up against Jay-Z and Eminem‘s DJ Hero, which they will serve as consultants for.
DJ Hero has a fine disc jockey pedigree, with contributions from DJ Shadow, mash-up guru DJ Z-Trip and plane-crash survivor DJ AM. Players will “utilize and master various DJ techniques including scratching, blending, cross fading and sampling,” according to a press release, “leaving room for creative expression with a variety of effects and player-chosen samples and scratches”. Presumably, they will also learn how to ruin a party with bad tunes. But if spinning records gets too boring, DJ Hero has some other options. You can, for instance, ignore all that “DJ” stuff and have an MC battle using the game’s microphone controller or even play guitar using your Guitar Hero controller. (Guardian News)
A release date for Rapstar has not yet been announced as of today (June 2).