Beat Saber: Everything we know about the VR rhythm game

Beat Saber, the rhythm VR game from developer Hyperbolic Magnetism (based in the Czech Republic), combines original beats with vibrant visuals and frenetic gameplay. The team started on this project in 2016 after not being satisfied with the selection of rhythm games available at the time, and its project was released May 1, 2018, on Steam and Oculus. It costs about $20. Here's everything else you need to know.

What's new with Beat Saber?

Beat Saber was released on Steam and Oculus May 1, 2018, and it's compatible with HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and Windows Mixed Reality (WMR). So far on Steam it has an Overwhelmingly Positive score with nearly 3,000 reviews.

A level editor intended to allow players to create their own courses with their own songs was expected to be released about 10 days following the initial release, but it has been delayed indefinitely due to technical issues. This hasn't stopped players from finding a workaround, and there are a few places you can go for mods, including the Beat Saber modding Discord channel.

How can I play Beat Saber?

How can I play Beat Saber?

Beat Saber is strictly a VR game, compatible with HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, or WMR. You'll likewise need a PC that meets the following minimum requirements:

  • Processor — Intel Core i5 (second-gen or better).
  • Memory — 4GB RAM.
  • Graphics — NVIDIA GTX 960 (equivalent or better).
  • Storage — 200MB.

What is Beat Saber?

What is Beat Saber?

Beat Saber is a VR rhythm game that combines original music with lightsaber slashing. It's sort of like Rock Band VR, Fruit Ninja VR, and Audioshield all mashed up into one, but Star Wars fans will no doubt also get a kick out of the content.

If you don't mind getting a workout while you game, Beat Saber is a title that's simple to pick up and try but extremely difficult to master.

What is Beat Saber gameplay like?

The above video is from Ruirize, filmed using LIV mixed reality.

Beat Saber is all about keeping rhythm. In each hand, you hold a lightsaber, one blue and one red. When the music starts, small blocks with a colored arrow on each begin scrolling toward you — much like other rhythm games — and it's up to you to slash the blocks in the direction noted by the arrow. There are obstacles that come your way as well, which you must avoid with your body and sabers.

Timing is everything here, and slashing successfully will up your combo multiplier and ultimately your final score. It seems relatively easy to start, but, as evidenced in some gameplay videos making the rounds, things can get crazy in a hurry. Each song should have multiple levels of difficulty to make it easier for beginners to jump in and for experts to enjoy a challenge.

Related: 8 Beat Saber tips and tricks to excel in Expert mode

How does scoring work in Beat Saber?

A big part of what keeps players coming back to Beat Saber is the leaderboard. Here you can see how you compare to the rest of the world as well as any online friends you have who also play. If you've been slashing near-perfectly and can't figure out why your scores are so low, it might have to do with how scoring works in Beat Saber.

There are essentially three things to remember when you slash a block. First, ensure you're starting your swing from a 90-degree angle. This awards you 70 points. Following through, you should continue your swing for at least another 60 degrees, which awards up to another 30 points. Finally, how close you slice to the middle of a block can net you up to another 10 points, bringing the total possible score per block up to 110 points.

When can I start playing Beat Saber?

You can start playing right now! Beat Saber is available on Steam (this version compatible with HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and WMR) and Oculus (compatible with Rift). Expect to pay about $20 at either store.

Updated May 22, 2018: I've refreshed this guide with a bit of new information regarding the upcoming level editor, as well as information that clarifies how scoring works.