If you’ve played Guitar Hero or Rock Band games before, then you know how challenging musical instrument rhythm games can be. Trombone Champ takes a similar tack but for the gorgeous wind instrument, and instead of rock music you’ll be playing bona fide bangers such as Scott Joplin’s “The Entertainer,” literal Beethoven, and “The National Anthem.” (Try getting those tunes out of your head.) This rhythm game was released a week ago, but it really started taking Twitter by storm on Wednesday after PC Gamer discovered it.
The game is pretty difficult. You use a mouse to slide the pitch up or down; you have to hit the pitch box precisely, then either hold down the button on your mouse or a key from your keyboard for the right amount of time. Here’s the kicker: The slider moves in the opposite direction, top to bottom, from how you move your own mouse. It’s a small difference that’s just disorienting enough to make playing songs harder, especially at the speed that the rhythm game demands.
Luckily, the game is way more fun when you don’t really play it well, as the trombone plays its dulcet toot-toots in accordance with whichever notes you’re playing. This all happens on top of the actual backing track, with your trombone playing the lead melody, as if you’re creating your own version of Matt Mulholland’s recorder rendition of Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” from Titanic.