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Fantasia: Music Evolved takes musical magic to 'The Haven'

Disney's motion-controlled musical sorcery game Fantasia: Music Evolved will explore a new realm called The Haven, developer Harmonix announced at PAX Prime this week. The new world sends players to a snowy wooded area inhabited by a sleepy yeti-like creature who players must coax from his cave in-between playing with Fantasia's soundtrack.

Between the wild gesturing of Fantasia: Music Evolved's gameplay, during which players must sweep their arms to musical cues — like Mickey Mouse in Fantasia's "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" — they'll have to alter and transform each realm by discovering "magical moments." Players will scroll left and right, looking for things they can interact with; icicles that act like chimes, for example, or tiny glowing-eye creatures.

Draw enough energy from these magical moments and players will get access to a new song. Complete that song and players will be rewarded with transformation keys, which alter the presentation of the realm. Initially, The Haven appeared to be an uninhabited white forest blanketed with snow. It was pitch black, save for an aurora in the night sky. One transformation later, and the moon arose, shining a dim light on The Haven — which then caused a sea monster to burst forth from the forest floor.

Later, through uncovering new magical moments, playing newly unlocked songs (Fun.'s "Some Nights" and Kimbra's "Settle Down") and earning new transformation keys, The Haven was altered further. The sun arose, causing a playful Sasquatch to emerge from an ice cave. The transformation saturated the forest with a bright, but slightly sepia-toned light. The black and white striped yeti attempted to hide from the player between the trees, and playing in the realm turned into a parallax scrolling puzzle, as a Harmonix rep attempted to find him amidst the camouflage and coax more magical moments from him.

These between song moments, mostly some light puzzle solving by interacting with the environment, may not be the primary draw of Fantasia: Music Evolved, but they lend the game a lot of character.

One of the songs playable in The Haven was new to Fantasia: Music Evolved: Vivaldi's "Winter" concerto from The Four Seasons. Here's a quick preview from Disney of the new realm and that song.

Like Fantasia's other tunes, players can manipulate the traditional version of the song through a tool called the musical manipulator, which lets players transform and remix the music. In a replay of the concerto, Vivaldi's "Winter" was given a touch of electronic flair, with thumping beats and a grimy, distorted sound.

Fantasia: Music Evolved is planned for release on Xbox 360 and Xbox One in 2014.

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