Indie rhythm game Trombone Champ has become something of a viral hit since it released earlier this month, plumbing the rich comedic potential of the iconic brass instrument. While the developers currently recommend playing with a mouse and keyboard while controller support is being ironed out, one resourceful streamer has already figured out how to play with the ideal controller–an actual trombone.
Streamer and content creator Rudeism is known for his use of unconventional controllers–GameSpot has featured him before for playing Elden Ring on a kid’s toy, Call of Duty with a baguette, and Overwatch with bananas. But this time, his choice of controller just makes sense.
The trombone’s unique design makes for some creative design choices in using it as a controller. Rudeism explained that he uses an ultrasonic sensor to control the slide. He notes in a subsequent tweet that the sensor’s limitations means he’s not moving the slide as far as an actual trombone player might, but is working on that issue for a future iteration.
Trombone Champ also requires input to make the trombone “doot,” as Rudeism puts it, with the unusual feature among rhythm games of allowing players to play any note they want at any time. This input Rudeism controls with a microphone, requiring him to actually make noise with his trombone controller to play the game.
The result is a beautifully wonky rendition of Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy, which sounds even more nasty when Rudeism reveals what his actual trombone sounds like. Bravo!
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