I’m definitely not suggesting that, especially since I made such a module myself, and have another in the works, and make heavy use of all sorts of step sequencers and arpeggiators in my songs. But I have much better experiences treating VCV sequencers as simple building blocks than as fully featured songwriting tools.
There seems to be a built-in assumption people will use VCV for ambient, techno, and also sometimes as an electrical engineer’s toy that incidentally produces waveforms as a side-effect. Genres that are all about the slowly morphing hypnotic patterns and complex timbres, the ten minutes long meditative jams that benefit greatly from keeping it all in a self-contained environment with cool-sounding emergent behaviors.
When someone approaches it with a different mindset, it can lead to miscommunication and insisting to challenge yourself to work within a single compositional paradigm out of misunderstanding the other person’s goals and approach. Personally, a lot of my interest in music composition was initially spurred by 90’s~00’s Japanese game soundtracks, which are all about very short catchy tunes with complex harmony and melodies. I would never be able to justify the cost of a hardware modular to use it in the “wrong” genre. But I can easily justify the whole 0€ it cost me to get started exploring VCV (and the €100 or so I spent on commercial modules).
Yesterday, I was writing a song in 4/4 that has a single one-bar 2/4 bridge, and changes key after that bridge. I had to re-listen to that part in context many times until I felt the drum fill was right. How do I program that in VCV? How do I lock the transport to a 3 bars loop in a modular? How do I keep multiple sequencers in sync when a bar is shorter? How do I program the key change in such a way that all the parts are in harmony? How do I keep things easy to edit if I change my mind later? How do I work on song parts out of order, starting with the hook?
None of those questions are impossible to answer! But the real question I’m asking is not really “how do I”, but “why would I”. Here’s another rhetorical question: my lead synth has multiple toggleable layers, one of which entails complex transposition rules, multiple envelopes and LFOs for everything, a bit of distortion, and a timbre that can be changed using mostly basic MIDI controls (velocity, mod wheel, aftertouch). How do I program that without VCV?