Songster aims to be the first game on Facebook to allow players to take something out of the game world that can be enjoyed and shared with friends in that other world some call real life. Unlike most games that have you creating virtual towns, birthing virtual sheep or baking pretty yet still virtual and inedible cupcakes, in Songster, players compose music that has the ability to inspire and entertain people outside of the virtual world (unless of course it’s rap). An intuitive and interface allows even novice composers to create music.
Songster by Mowgli may just be the first game on Facebook with updates you look forward to receiving. Instead of spam from friends with gift requests or appeals to come milk their cow, Songster updates will be pieces of music your friends created and shared with only the intention of entertaining their buddies. These pieces can then be played right there on your Facebook wall or shared with others. Each of these creations will also be unique. The combinations that tracks can be laid in are virtually limitless, so the odds of you ever hearing the same piece from two different people is pretty much zero.
As a player, you will take on the role of a fledgling artist trying make it in the music industry. Starting from a humble garage you will need to make a name for yourself, first by landing a gig at Carla’s Coffee house, followed by more glamorous gigs, with the eventual goal to play at Mix Fest. After each performance you will be paid in Songster coins which can be used to purchase song packs from the virtual store. Each song pack contains music by an independent artist or group and will come with all of the tracks you need to mix your own version of a masterpiece.
The current incarnation of the mixing tool allows players to drag and drop tracks into 4 categories, Vocals, Lead, Bass and Drums. Moving the mouse pointer over each track will cause it to play so that you can listen to each piece individually before choosing a location to place it. Once you are happy with your creation the compilation can be played and named. If you decide you would like to change any part, you can do so simply by moving a track to a new spot or deleting it and replacing it with another. Once satisfied, you may perform the song and save it to your profile to be shared or browsed by your friends.
The game just recently launched but some exciting upcoming features are already evident. To start, players can currently choose to customize their avatar by choosing a body type and a wide variety of clothing options, but we can also see a greyed out instrument button that will likely allow us to choose from a wide variety of instrument styles. The charts tab is unlinked and will likely be a list of top songs, which means there will also be a way for friends to rate each other’s creations. The mix song packs option is currently greyed out but hints at the likelihood that the song mixing tool isn’t far from complete, with many more enhancements to look forward to.
The most interesting aspect of the app isn’t part of the game itself, it is the feedback tab anchored on the left side of the screen that allows players to submit bugs and suggestions. Other players can see all of the submissions and add their vote to show they support the suggestion. By reading through some of these submissions, the developer involvement is obvious. Many of the comments have replies from Mowgli which is common in for Indy game companies with passionate teams that want to build the best game possible. We highly encourage all players to use this opportunity to interface with the developers. The chance to shape the development of this innovative game should not be overlooked.
There are already almost 100 song packs in the virtual store yet there is little doubt that many more will be out in the future. We encourage anyone who enjoys music to try Songster, which may actually be more people than are currently on Facebook, if such a thing is possible.
Check out this inovative game by going right to the Songster Facebook page.