The GamesCom conference has begun this week in Germany, and so the gaming news is obviously flowing from Europe. Instant Action
is a U.S.-based startup that got their initial services underway in one form or another earlier this year, but now their first actual software is going live. It's a big moment for the company, but it may just be an even bigger moment for the industry as a whole.
Gaming hasn't changed too much over the past few years, but the thought of free, embed-friendly gaming that's as easy to use and access as YouTube could seriously change the way people look at casual gaming. Instant Jam is a Rock Band-like title that's launching today in beta, with signed-up users able to visit the company's website and play. They'll be opening it to the public in the coming weeks, where it will be embeddable anywhere online, and playable along with thousands of songs consumers own in their music libraries.
If this goes over well, we expect many other titles to be released in this fashion. And with more and more people on the go, that's definitely a good thing.
InstantAction Debuts Instant Jam
First-ever console-quality, online music-rhythm game can be played with your music collection and is embeddable anywhere on the Web
LAS VEGAS and COLOGNE, Germany, Aug. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Browser-based gaming innovator InstantAction®, an operating business of IAC (Nasdaq: IACI), today unveiled Instant Jam™, the world's first console-quality, online music-rhythm game that is free to play, embeddable anywhere online, and playable along with thousands of songs consumers own in their music libraries. Instant Jam is currently available in a Facebook Beta Program and is being shown this week at gamescom. The Instant Jam Beta Program will be open to the public in subsequent weeks through the game's site (www.instantjam.com) and embedded versions throughout the web.
The first original game from InstantAction's Vegas-based games studio, Instant Jam delivers a core game experience with high quality 3D graphics through the browser and popular features of social games. InstantAction's embeddable platform enables Instant Jam to be played anytime, anywhere – including on Facebook, www.instantjam.com, editorial sites, blogs and more. All that's required is an Internet connection.
Untethered from any console, players can jam along to their music library with support for thousands of the world's most popular songs by tapping their computer keyboards or playing with their favorite USB guitar controllers. Players can challenge their friends, earn or purchase virtual goods that enhance their game play, gift items, and even share the game online as easily as they would a YouTube video.
"We created Instant Jam because we believe people should be able to play along to any song from any band or genre they like, rather than be confined to a handful of pre-set songs chosen for the game they're playing," said Louis Castle, CEO of InstantAction. "We also strongly believe that games – like other forms of entertainment media – should be easier for consumers to discover, try, enjoy and share. Instant Jam embodies all of this and provides music lovers with a powerful new way to interact while experiencing their music."
Instant Jam launches with thousands of note charts supporting the world's most popular songs – more than all other console music-rhythm game franchises combined – with support for dozens of songs being added each week. Each note chart is designed by an experienced game design team to provide an immersive gaming experience that really makes you feel like you are playing a guitar; Instant Jam does not simply track song beats as some algorithmically generated programs do.
"The best part of working on a AAA game that lives online is that, unlike a boxed product, we're not done when the game goes live; we're just getting started," said Amir Rahimi, Executive Producer of Instant Jam. "Currently, Instant Jam has all of the game play people have come to expect from premium rhythm games on consoles. We'll be continually adding support for new songs, major features such as fully customizable avatars, and more social elements based on feedback from our community."
At launch, Instant Jam will include the following key features:
* Your Music. Instant Jam automatically checks your music library to match your songs to suggested note charts so you can play right away with your music – be it a legendary rock classic or an emerging indie band. Or you can play your songs with any note chart you wish.
* More Music. If you see something on the playlist you don't own, simply purchase new songs from Amazon or iTunes through the game and get in-game value in excess of the cost of the song. Purchased songs are added to your music library and yours to use anywhere you play your music.
* Your Game. Instant Jam is free to play via social features as you earn fans, plays and new virtual items for bragging rights. Level up and earn new items, or quickly purchase them with micro-transactions to enhance game play.
* Console-Quality Game play. With game play consistent with the best music games on the market, Instant Jam is playable from within any browser without long, annoying download wait times.
* Share with Friends. Instant Jam can be embedded anywhere on the Web. Simply copy and paste the embed URL into your blog or website. Share the game with your social network and challenge friends to see who jams best.
* Universal Play. Instant Jam is launching with thousands of note charts supporting the world's most popular songs – more than all other console rhythm-music games combined. Support for dozens of new songs in a variety of genres from around the globe will be added each week. The possibilities are endless!
* Your Style. You can play Instant Jam with standard USB guitar controllers already in the market or tap away on your keyboard.
* Coming Soon. The Instant Jam team will be adding new items and features on an ongoing basis based on community feedback.
"Instant Jam gives consumers a powerful new way to engage with the artists and bands they love; it actually encourages and rewards them for purchasing music they can then play anywhere," said Jed Weitzman, Head of Business Development for InstantAction. "Instant Jam is more than a game – it's an open platform for discovering and experiencing music with friends through the power of social media. It has incredible potential to help artists showcase and sell their music by engaging fans in a genuine and impactful way."
The creators of Instant Jam are a star-studded cast of game industry veterans behind best-selling original franchises such as Steven Spielberg's BOOM BLOX, Command & Conquer, Lands of Lore and Eye of the Beholder, as well as blockbuster licensed original products including The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth I & II, Disney's The Lion King, Blade Runner and Monopoly.
Instant Jam will be available initially on the PC, with Macintosh and Flash versions to follow shortly.
For more information about Instant Jam, or for an opportunity to access the Beta Program, please visit www.instantjam.com.