Be A Rock Star With Virtual Guitar!

Playing air guitar is like playing rock guitar, only without an actual instrument, or musical skills. It is, in fact, not about playing an instrument, but putting on a wild show. Anyone can play air guitar -- all you need is some music to play along to.

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What is the Virtual Air Guitar?

Playing air guitar is like playing rock guitar, only without an actual instrument, or musical skills. It is, in fact, not about playing an instrument, but putting on a wild show. Anyone can play air guitar -- all you need is some music to play along to. But up until now, you've been restricted to following existing music. The Virtual Air Guitar is a project developed at the Telecommunications Software and Multimedia Laboratory and the Acoustics Laboratory of the Helsinki University of Technology, and was finished in March 2005. It is an entertainment device that lets users have fun in the spirit of air guitar. It is not an expressive instrument that you need to spend years learning how to play. Anyone can play air guitar, so everyone is able to play the Virtual Air Guitar as well. All you need is a pair of orange gloves and a rock'n'roll attitude. The goal is to provide people without musical skills the chance to experience the fun of playing and creating music, and to expand their concept of listening music to experiencing it. The Air Guitar is based on a lot of existing research (click here to learn more).

How to play.

Playing the Air Guitar is simple. You pull on a pair of orange gloves, press the start pedal, and rock on. Take a playing pose as if you were holding an imaginary guitar -- left hand on the guitar's neck, and right hand near your hip. You will see yourself on a TV screen, with your orange gloves highlighted. Now swing the right hand as if you were strumming a big chord. And that's exactly what happens -- you hear a power chord with punchy distortion. Now move your left hand along the imaginary neck and strum again -- it's a different chord. You can't play any "wrong" chords here -- they have been pre-selected for you, but it doesn't seem limiting at all. After all, it may only be 4 chords, but that's exactly how many you need to play Smoke On The Water. When you're ready for your solo, press the switch pedal to change from chord mode to solo mode. Now you have a solo guitar to work on -- a pentatonic minor scale on the three top strings, with fret slides and vibrato. Play hard enough with feeling, and you start getting screaming distortions that can't be done justice to here in writing. It's something you have to experience yourself. It's easy enough that you can pick it up in ten seconds, but especially the solo mode has just enough freedom for every solo to be different. No one has become bored of it yet. And yet everything you get out of it is musical, not chaotic. You don't really need to know anything about guitar solos, except for how rock guitarists perform on stage. In fact, we've noticed that real guitarists have more difficulty with just rockin' on. When the Virtual Air Guitar reaches the shops in 2007, remember: this is more than just an excuse for having a go at that fiddly bit in your favourite rock anthem! Read more at this location.

132 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    BoBo_lover
    I WANT ONE OF THESE FOR MY BIRTHDAY!!!!!HOW MUCH ARE THEY?????WHERE DO I GET IT?????
    acdc101
    "lets hope it wont replace the real guitar." If you go to the site, you'll see it is not an expressive "instrument", you can only play 4 pre selected chords on it in rythym mode. It will not replace the guitar, it was not intended to and wont.
    sargasm
    A guitarist complaining about this is like a soldier complaining about Ghost Recon, or a professional racecar driver complaining about Gran Turismo.
    rusted embrace
    the already have a game where you push buttons for frets. that's bad enough, this is just silly.
    Asi@nConnection
    I don't see how this virtual guitar is s good idea. You can't simulate holding a guitar with gloves. It wouldn't have any substance.
    LetTheBassPlay
    [b]The^Unforgiven[ /b] wrote: travislausch: If someone records their work with this, and releases an album with it, it'll be a sad, dark day for real, talented musicians everywhere ;_; Man the result would be just like Green Day! A sad day to life it would be indeed ;_;
    you know it. It would make the musicians with actual instruments look really bad.
    LPIndin
    just think of one of your buddies hammered ass drunk, baked, or preferrably both trying to play this game. it would be worth it
    IMa Lefty
    Mr. Raw wrote: that is the gayest thing i have ever heard. my bet is that no talent emo bitches created this.
    ya, im pretty sure this guy's an idiot.
    Dudewithanaxe
    I am surprised i could say all of this bad words .Thank you Ultimate-guitar for making this dream posible.=)
    IlIk2plygUItAr
    Wow I wonder how much this company payed UG to run this "article." Why would they do that on a guitar website where people actually play guitar? Why not somewhere where they don't play?
    acdc101
    "The goal is to provide people without musical skills the chance to experience the fun of playing and creating music"
    acdc101
    Assholes, it's not supposed to (and not going to) take the place of a real guitar. It's just a toy, no matter how serious the people who made it are about it.
    Metalmouth
    pitbull510 wrote: travislausch wrote: If someone records their work with this, and releases an album with it, it'll be a sad, dark day for real, talented musicians everywhere ;_; yeah, but good thing most people are *****s, so hopefully the company will sue the living shit out of that idiot.
    I agree with pitbull the company would deffiantely sue any1 stupid enough to make 1 with it. + no one in their right mind would buy the album. No one would know who they were if they didn't play some concerts & a person with a fake guitar will get bood off and never sell a fu*king record.
    Mr. Raw
    that is the gayest thing i have ever heard. my bet is that no talent emo bitches created this.
    Metalmouth
    If some1 did make an album with this it would be sad but I don't think that is the point. Did the owners of the company say what age level it was for? It would be perfect for a little kid. It's like those fake toys of instruments kids used when they were youngr but brought to the next level. I'm sure older people will buy it but it's a fu*king toy. It is not the downfall to musicians. Don't make a fu*king drama story out of it.
    redhotsexmagic
    I'm gonna say everyone needs to chill the hell out about this. It is a video game first of all. It wouldn't surpise me to see a rise in interest in real guitar playing from this. u would have to get bored playin the same 4 chords and same solo after a while so why not buy a real guitar and make some new sounds for yourself? It will probably end up in arcades like they did with the dance revolution game and I think it'll do well. A lot of you guys got one track minds and need to look at the big picture with these kind of things.
    iamtheguitarpro
    i agree with travislausch. i work really hard playing guitar, and am really good at it. i think we should use all those orange gloves to... build a... boat. or something.
    AK Guitarist
    Haha, we need a video of someone actually playing this. Post it on Ebaumsworld and have the kid labeled for life, just like the Star Wars kid.
    pitbull510
    travislausch wrote: If someone records their work with this, and releases an album with it, it'll be a sad, dark day for real, talented musicians everywhere ;_;
    yeah, but good thing most people are *****s, so hopefully the company will sue the living shit out of that idiot.
    Plumb
    looks like the sort of thing you would only play when drunk, interesting concept, i like the idea of it. but only something you would play when drunk.
    borninamoshpit_
    this is a really stupid idea, when playing a real guitar it might be a little harder to move all crazy like, but you get to feel the music and have a real sense of accomplishment to what you do, and plus this "toy" makes a guitar nothing but a mere accessory even though it is an musical instrument.
    ibanez_player
    Well it might be good as an arcade game or somethen like that but not to sit and play with Besides a real guitar is alot more fun
    Archaon
    And it's shit like this that contributes to the fact that music is getting shittier and shittier everyday (or at least in the mainstream). Soon enough every band will be like a Greenday, Linkin Park, or Slipknot. What a ****ing shame. Leave music to the musicians. You wanna play a guitar? Go out and buy a ****ing guitar, it'll probably be cheaper than this shit anyways. I hereby claim that anyone who buys this piece of crap is a poser.
    sum dood
    this would be such an awesome thing to play when you're drunk off your ass with your friends....I play the real guitar,and I don't think this "threatens" anyone,it's just a game for shits and giggles,take a lude.....I'd definately play this with friends,because it sounds like fun,which it was intended for
    Logz
    Spam deleted. Dudewithanaxe has been banned You guys have been warned by the mods so many times now, if there is any more spam you will receive an instant warning, no questions asked
    GDB
    you can already do something along these lines on Eyetoy play 2... its quite amusing but in the end it'd probably get quite boring for the player because they're miming it. plus you look like a bit of a twat. but if its fun, then you know, cool.
    CtrlFreak
    lol sounds like a laugh, wouldn't teach anyone anything really though. Is just an arcade-game thing, they've had stuff like that in Japan for years.
    artemus
    its not about people being lazy or not, its about people who want to have fun. Seriously, were you any good when you first started playing guitar, if you are as good as you claim to be? and really..quit bashing bands, if you think they suck, make your own band, get a label, and make better music..end of story
    Undead Centaur
    I agree with GnRrelease_its comment get ur own guitar and learn summot urself,its just lazy not to.
    Caullay
    matthuman wrote: don't take it so seriously its atoy i wonder if the same arguments were started at www.ulitmatewindowwashers.com when the eyetoy came out
    Yep i agree, its a toy, its something to have party games in the winter, the guy who does the crappiest solo have to eat yellow snow... Sure playing a real guitar is rewarding, and i dont think anybody would think they are a super cool guitarist if they can smash out sommink with the gloves... if they do, give the prat a real guitar and watch him suffer... The glove thing reminds me of that spinal tap album SMELL THE GLOVE!
    the evil edge
    look on the bright side, you'd never get annoyed by broken strings or sh*tty tuners. its probs only good for a cheap joke anyway, but you can already get drumsticks that do a similiar thing.
    brycey81
    How would it be possible to release an album with an air guitar toy? Seriously. There are guitar synthesizers for anyone who wants to program guitar on their PC. All the chords on this toy are pre-coded so you couldnt do anything creative. And also, saying this toy will make people think they are professional guitarists is like saying people who play racing games think they are professional drivers. I dont see what all the fuss is about. Sure, its a bit sad like playing "virtual golf" in the arcade with an infra-red stick, but its just a bit of fun. You could argue that you should teach yourself the guitar instead of using this, but your average person neither has the time, passion or commitment to learn a musical instrument for the several years it takes to become good. It does not threaten the very existance of guitar playing, you're just being paranoid.
    furthernotice
    Everyone relax! As long as there's people like us, no one will release an album with this, we'll give them too much shit.
    luke2206
    Metallica708 wrote: jeez, guys, its just a laugh. no need to go on and on about how you're screwed because you have "talent". All the people who don't like the idea of people having it are the people who can only play Smoke On The Water and Smells Like Teen Spirit. Just chill out.
    wow thanx dude my confidence just took a hammering. i can play for whom the bell tolls and seek and destroy as well
    Metallica708
    jeez, guys, its just a laugh. no need to go on and on about how you're screwed because you have "talent". All the people who don't like the idea of people having it are the people who can only play Smoke On The Water and Smells Like Teen Spirit. Just chill out.
    ChubbyLove
    Virtual Guitar Fortune:: You spend hours mastering Air Guitar, and win, only to realize you look retarded