Fantasia: Music Evolved is a collaboration between Rock Band studio Harmonix and Disney that puts players into the Kinect-powered shoes of a new sorcerer’s apprentice.
The new game from the developer that gave the world Guitar Hero and Rock Band doesn’t stray too far from the studio’s musical roots. Set in the magical realm made famous by the 1940 Disney flick, Fantasia: Music Evolved is a motion-controlled rhythm game being developed for the Xbox 360 and Xbox One in which players “unleash their musical creativity” as a new apprentice of the legendary sorcerer Yen Sid, who must bust some moves in order to bring life to various worlds he’s created.
The game will launch with music from more than 25 musicians, but rather than mimicking on-screen motions as in conventional rhythm games, players will have a greater degree of freedom in how they interact with the music. “In building a gesture system we wanted to give a lot of freedom to people, so it’s not this ‘copy what you see on screen’ thing, which is what we did with Dance Central. Here, you’re moving rhythmically, and we wanted to give players the sense of freedom of expression,” Creative Director Matt Boch told Polygon. “With your body, you can choose which hand you’re going to use and how big your gestures are going to be.”
The launch trailer may not resonate with Disney aficionados looking forward to a nostalgic return to Mickey’s magical shenanigans but the premise is certainly interesting, and Harmonix Director of Communications John Drake had a very clear message for people fretting over the appropriateness of dubstep-fueled Fantasia. “If you have questions about our ability to deliver on adapting iconic work w/respect & reverence, go play The Beatles Rock Band,” he tweeted. “I’ll wait.”
So there you have it. No release date has been announced but the Fantasia: Music Evolved Facebook page says the game will be out sometime in 2014.