Harmonix interested in branching out beyond music with Kinect

Many years ago, before Harmonix was the dev house that birthed Guitar Hero, Rock Band, and Dance Central, the company created EyeToy: AntiGrav -- a motion-controlled game for Sony's PlayStation 2 "EyeToy" camera peripheral. Despite strong sales, that was the last time that the Massachusetts-based developer created a project not steeped in music. But it seems that the studio may not have abandoned its one-time interest in non-music motion-based games.

"I think we're always open-minded about new opportunities," Harmonix CEO Alex Rigopulos told me in an interview this week at the Tokyo Game Show. "Certainly our focus always has been and probably always will be on music-themed games," he added, but his company's involvement with Dance Central has rekindled the studio's interest in other types of motion-based gaming. "A perfect example is the Kinect, which I think that through our work on Dance Central we've developed an affinity for -- towards motion gaming."

Though Rigopulos wouldn't speak to specifics, he would say that, "It wouldn't be surprising if in the future we took some steps outside of our wheelhouse in music to try some new things in non-music focused motion gaming."

Harmonix' latest release, VidRhythm for iOS devices, may also be on the cards for some type of Kinect-based adaptation. "Of course our hope is to keep improving it and expanding it, including bringing it to other platforms, such as possibly Kinect," Rigopulos explained. That said, with VidRhythm having just launched in the past few weeks, he's not even sure of initial sales reports just yet, so it may be a few before we hear more about the application headed to other devices.