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Keyboard and turntable controls for beatmania.
Beatmania (ビートマニア) (styled as
beatmania) is a rhythm video game developed and distributed
by Japanese game developer Konami and first released in 1997. It
contributed largely to the boom of music games in 1998, and the
series expanded not only with arcade sequels, but also moved to home
consoles and other portable devices, achieving a million unit
sales.. The Bemani line
of music games from Konami is named after the series, and was first
adopted in the arcade release of Beatmania 3rdMix and kept
ever since. The series came to an end with the last game being
Beatmania The Final, released in 2002.
Beatmania gave birth to several spinoffs, such as the
IIDX series (a more advanced version featuring 7-keys and
higher difficulty levels) and the other being Beatmania III,
a remake of the 5-key series which featured a more modern hardware
platform, a pedal for optional effects and a 3.5" floppy disk drive
to save play records.
While the series was never ported to the computer, its
popularity led to non-official simulators, with one of the most
popular being BM98.
Beatmania and its variants have a following in Japan
and all around the world. The password based Internet Ranking
service allowed competition wherever a machine is available. Today
in the United States many of the original beatmania cabinets are in
the hands of arcade collectors, and Bemani enthusiasts, and
consequently are a rare sight at many arcades.
The player is a club DJ who must manipulate the controls
according to the instructions on screen to win the praise of the
audience. Each game consists of a set number of songs of various
difficulties, and each song must attain a certain degree of
satisfaction from the audience in order to progress to the
The game controls consist of five plastic vertical rectangular
keys that are arranged in a zig-zag pattern alike the letter "M" or
in vibraphone type
arranged. They resemble the layout of the keys of a piano (e.g. C,
C#, D, D#, and E) and are color coded in the same fashion, with the
lower row white and top row black. A turntable is to the right of
the five keys, and is turned, or "scratched".
Each key has a corresponding vertical bar onscreen, as does the
turntable. The bars indicate the path which rectangular icons
cascade down towards a horizontal line near the bottom of the
screen. The player must hit the corresponding key or rotate the
turntable when the icon matches with the line, which will trigger a
preset sound sample and recomposes the song properly. Players are
judged for each key press for the accuracy of the timing on a scale
of great, good, bad and poor. Hitting keys/scratching when
corresponding notes are absent will deplete a bar indicating the
audience satisfaction. The passing range is shown on the bar as a
red region on the right, and green for the failing range on the
left. The game may end pre-maturely if the bar is completely
depleted, but this depends on individual machine settings.
The unit of score in the game is "money". A final grade (A - G)
is given at the end of the game to indicate the player's
performance. This grade is not directly based on the "money score",
but is instead based on the player's overall accuracy.
Various game modes are available, with different rule
alterations that provide suitable challenges for players of various
degrees of skill.
- Featured in Beatmania 2ndMix and Beatmania,
inexperienced players can go through a training stage with DJ
Konami, a voice-over that walks you through the basics of the game.
After the training stage players can select songs normally and
regardless of their performance won't end a game prematurely. The
voice over was not featured in any other Beatmania series game,
although a similarly formatted Tutorial mode was recently added to
IIDX games. Prior to practice mode players could choose to
play a practice stage during normal games.
- Introduced in 6thMIX, Free mode is another practice
mode that follows all the rules of the Normal mode, with passing
and failing scores, but allows the player to play all the
predefined number of songs regardless of each song's
- A mode for skilled players with courses that predefines the
songs to be played. The rules for this mode have been modified
throughout different versions of the game.
- Players must play through all the songs in a set order, with
the audience bar dropping in greater degrees and increasing less.
All the other rules follow the normal mode. Continues are
- Different themed course are given, each running five songs
long. The scoring rules follow that of the previous beatmania.
- In addition to the courses format of 2ndMIX, the audience bar
is now full from the beginning, and any decrease will carry onto
the next stage, where good performance does not recover the bar.
The audience bar is characteristically colored in red, and no
continues are allowed upon game over.
- completeMIX and after
- With the introduction of the Internet Ranking service, scores
are now counted as 2 points for "Just Great" and 1 point for
"Great", which makes the overall EX Score. Upon completion of the
course, a password is given to the player to submit to the official
website for worldwide ranking. All of the internet ranking services
have ended and are no longer available.
- featuring "Dreams Come True"
- The Dreams Come True edition uses the same rules as
CompleteMIX, but also features a minigame in between songs where a
player can rapidly scratch to restore life.
- First offered in 6thMIX, this mode is designed for the
most skilled of players. A single course is provided, featuring ten
of the hardest songs in a particular version. The audience bar
functions similarly to that of Expert mode, but falling to zero
doesn't result in an immediate game over. Rather, "Danger" is
displayed on the screen, and it will take another subsequent miss
to end the game. The bar is restored after each song.
- Available since 3rdMIX, the Easy mode offers
simplified playing sequences for songs. The selection of Easy and
Hard modes were discarded altogether from 6thMIX and
after, with difficulty selection becoming options within the
integrated Normal mode.
Two major styles of the Beatmania cabinet were originally
created, the standard cabinet, and the mini-style cabinet. The
standard cabinet was taller and wider than the mini-style, and
included a 29" screen, versus the 20" screen on the mini cabinet.
The 1P/2P/Effect buttons were placed on the vertical face of the
cabinet on the mini, while placed between the keys, ahead of the
coin drop on standard cabinets. The mini-cabinet contained 6
speakers, 4 normal mid/high range, and 2 larger subs. The standard
cabinet contained 10 speakers, including the 2 subs. Functionally
the game boards, HDD, and romchips were the same between cabinets.
Finally the mini cabinet had a smaller spacing between the
turntable and the keys, and the turntable was approximately half
the diameter of the standard version. Today the mini-cabinet is
much harder to find, especially in the United States.
Beatmania offers many musical genres from different
disciplines of electronic music. Below are some of
the artists who made frequent appearances in the series.
The Beatmania series has been released on multiple
platforms in addition to its arcade releases. The majority of the
games have been featured on the Sony PlayStation and have also been featured on
the Nintendo Game
Boy Color, and the WonderSwan. The North American Beatmania on the PlayStation 2 also
features Beatmania play.
Several key mixes were never ported to home or portable
consoles, including Beatmania 7thMix and Beatmania The Final. Also
there are many console exclusive songs that were never introduced
on the Arcade releases, in mixes such as Gottamix and The Sound Of
Tokyo. Many songs were also released on one mix at the arcades but
released on another style for the consumer versions. The best
example of this was Gottamix 2, which contained consumer exclusive
songs in addition to the "Complete Mix 2 Anothers" that were
released months earlier as an arcade exclusive.
- Arcade releases
- The main platform for the series, most other releases were
based on certain titles from the arcade series, or featured a
selection of songs across several of them.
- The following are arranged in the order of their release.
- Beatmania (December 1997)
- Beatmania 2ndMix (March 1998)
- Beatmania 3rdMix (September 1998)
- Beatmania CompleteMix (January 1999)
- Beatmania 4thMix -the beat goes on- (April 26,
- Beatmania 5thMix -Time to get down- (September
- Beatmania complete Mix 2 (January 27,
- Beatmania Club Mix (March 2000)
- Beatmania featuring Dreams Come True (June
- Beatmania Core Remix (November 2000)
- Beatmania 6thMix - The UK Underground Musics-
- Beatmania 7thMix - Keepin' Evolution- (January
- Beatmania The Final (July 2002)
- Korean arcade releases
- Korean local releases(licensed by Unico Electronics Co.
Ltd(former name of Uniana)) were removed Japanese vocal songs
because of Korean law in that era.
- Beatstage (1998): Logo is varation of
Beatmania, but it's actually 2ndMix. tokai(Japanese HipHop) is not
available in this version.
- Beatstage 3rdMix (1999): Believe Again "Hyper
Mega Mix"(J-Dance Pop) and Luv to me(Eurobeat) are changed English
version originally in complete mix. and Believe Again (80's J-Pop)
and Find Out are not available in this version.
- Beatstage CompleteMix (1999): tokai/ Find Out/
Believe Again "Hyper Mega Mix"(Japanese Version)/ Luv to
me(Japanese Version) are not available in this version.
- Beatstage 4thMix -the beat goes on- (1999): No
removed songs in this version.
- Beatstage 5thMix -Time to get down- (1999?
2000?): Gauge method is different from Beatmania 5thMix. This
version is like the HARD gauge in beatmania IIDX series. Added
Hi-speed 2/3(originally these were added in completeMix2), and
TOTAL RECALL/KAKATTEKONKAI are not available in this version.
- North American arcade releases
- Konami released two Beatmania games in North America
under the name HipHopMania.
- HipHopMania complete Mix (1999): Includes all
songs from the Japanese cabinet Beatmania complete Mix.
- HipHopMania complete Mix 2 (2000): Includes
almost all songs from the Japanese cabinet Beatmania complete Mix
2. (Removed 10 songs)
- The PlayStation releases were only available for Japan apart
from one which was created especially for the European market . The
first game acted as a key disc, which is required to play the
subsequent releases through disc changing, and were called append
discs. Special hidden songs could be accessed for certain append
discs if the discs were changed through a specific order.
- Beatmania (October 1, 1998): The console
release of the arcade 2ndMix. Acts as a key disc.
- Beatmania Append Yebisu Mix: Append disc
included with the release of beatmania containing all new songs.
Features the debut of the popular Bemani artist Sanae
- Beatmania Append 3rdMix Mini: Append disc
included with the 3rdMix soundtrack. Features 5 new songs from the
- Beatmania Append 3rdMix (December 23, 1998):
The first stand alone append disc to be sold. Features various, but
not all, new songs from the arcade 3rdMix in addition to console
original tracks. The Expert Mode from the arcade version was
- Beatmania Append GottaMix (May 27, 1999): The
second stand alone append disc release. Features 19 songs made by
KCEJ unique to the PlayStation console and three songs from 4thMix
that served as a preview.
- Beatmania Append 4thMix (September 9, 1999):
Append disc complete port of the arcade 4thMix. All new songs from
the arcade 4thMix were included in addition to new console tracks.
The Bonus Edit mode can be accessed if the discs are swapped in the
order of 3rdMix, then GottaMix, then 4thMix. The Bonus Edit mode
adds songs from 3rdMix that were excluded from the previous console
- Beatmania Append 5thMIX (March 2, 2000):
Append disc port of the arcade 5thMix. All new songs from the
arcade were included with no new console tracks.
- Beatmania Best Hits (July 27, 2000):First
console release to drop the append disc format. It could act as a
key disc and access the append releases. Includes songs from the
first Beatmania up to 5thMix and GottaMix, chosen through fan votes
on the internet.
- Beatmania featuring Dreams Come True (July 27,
2000): Key disc release of the arcade version of the same name.
Features music of the J-Pop duo Dreams Come True. The
difficulty is notably lower than most other previous games.
- Beatmania Append GOTTAMIX 2 - Going Global
(September 7, 2000): The official follow up release to GottaMix,
again, featuring all new songs exclusive to the console. The tracks
were themed around music from around the world.
- Beatmania Append ClubMix (December 21, 2000):
Append disc complete port of the arcade ClubMIX. Only one new
secret console exclusive track was added. The Bonus Edit mode
included tracks from the arcade completeMIX2 with rearranged button
- Beatmania The Sound of Tokyo (March 29, 2001):
PlayStation exclusive key disc release. Produced by famous Japanese
musician Konishi Yasuharu. The difficulty of songs were indicated
with the number of passengers on a plane. The songs cover a wide
spectrum of skill levels that suit from beginners to experts.
- Beatmania 6thMix + Core Remix (January 26,
2002): Key disc release and the only coupled release. As the name
implies, new songs from the arcade 6thMix and Core Remix are
included. Both the Left Hand Strach Mode and the Original Expert
Course Mode were carried over from the console beatmania IIDX
- Beatmania (Europe) (June 2000): The European
version of beatmania included licensed songs from Moloko, Skank, Les Rhythmes Digitales, and more.
Also included are classic beatmania tracks from various mixes. The
European licenses are also featured in GottaMix 2.
- Game Boy
- Three games were released for the Game Boy color exclusively in
Japan. The first two were backwards compatible with the classic
- Beatmania GB (March 11, 1999): Features 10
songs selected from 2ndMix, 3rdMix and Yebisu Mix. Another 10
original songs complete the music list. The game was developed by
Konami Computer Entertainment Kobe.
- Beatmania GB 2 GatchaMix (November 25, 1999):
Features 5 songs selected from GottaMix. Songs from famous artists
such as the Morning Musume, SMAP, Utada Hikaru in addition to animations
songs like Mobile Suit Gundam Starship Girl Yamamoto Yohko make up
20 tracks. Hideo
Kojima is listed as one of the producers and the title was
developed by Konami Computer Entertainment Japan.
- Beatmania GB GatchaMix2 (September 28, 2000):
A Game Boy Color exclusive game, it follows the format of the
previous GatchaMix with console tracks from the PlayStation and
other popular licensed songs from real life artists. This release
also had 25 tracks in total. GatchaMix2 was previously to be
Beatmania GB Net Jam, with the tracks available for download
through the Mobile System GB in Japan.
- Beatmania for Wonderswan (April 28, 1999): The
only Beatmania title for the Wonderswan, and also the only title
released on the system from Konami. It featured 11 songs from the
arcade 3rdMix. Because of the better sound processing capabilities
for the system, the tracks closely resembled their arcade
counterparts. It made use of the vertical orientation on the system
to better mimic the arcade screen format. A snap on mini turntable
was bundled with the game. Also worth noting is that on some
advertisement material, the game was referred to as vol.1 of a
series, hinting that Konami had positive expectations in its sales
and planned subsequent releases. It was sold around the same period
as Beatmania GB.
- The Bemani Pocket line were portable gaming devices with a
monochrome LCD screen, each featuring a :number of songs in a
specific theme. As with most other Bemani releases, they were sold
only in Japan.
- Beatmania Pocket: The only version to feature
a body that mimicked the arcade cabinet.
- Beatmania Pocket2: The first release to
feature a smoother design that was used with all subsequent
- Beatmania Pocket -SummerMix-
- Beatmania Pocket -AnimeSong Mix1-: A selection
of songs from titles by Go
Nagai. The body had the color scheme of Mazinger Z.
- Beatmania Pocket -Tokimeki Memorial Edition-:
Songs from the dating sim Tokimeki Memorial.
- Beatmania Pocket Skeleton: A special release
of SummerMIX with a clear body given away as a prize. 5000 units
were given away.
- Beatmania Pocket -AnimeSong Mix2- Features
songs from titles by Shotaro Ishinomori.
- Beatmania Pocket 2000: The internal hardware
was updated to improve sound quality, and was kept for all
- Beatmania Pocket -Enjoy Georgia Signature-: A
special edition for the Georgia Signature novelty goods stores of
Japan. It was included inside a gift package for their Millennium
- Beatmania Pocket -Hello Kitty Edition-: Hello
Kitty's face is molded on the scratch disc part.
- Beatmania Pocket -AnimeSong Mix3-: A selection
of songs from titles by Leiji Matsumoto.
- Beatmania Pocket -Tigers version: A special
edition for the Hanshin Tigers baseball team of Japan featuring
cheer songs for the team.
- Beatmania Pocket -Kawaii! version-: A
collaborated release with the teenage girls' magazine Kawaii!.
- Beatmania Pocket -Tokimeki Memorial 2 edition:
Songs from the dating sim Tokimeki Memorial 2.
- Beatmania Pocket -Love Stories-: A selection
of love songs from various artists.
- Beatmania Pocket -KonaMix-: Various songs from
classic Konami games.
- Beatmania Pocket -Best Hits 2000-: Popular
songs from various artists from the year 2000.
- Beatmania Pocket -Tigers Version2: A special
edition for the Hanshin Tigers baseball team of Japan featuring
cheer songs for the team. New songs were not added, but a new
of series • List of musicians
2ndMix • 3rdMix • Yebisu Mix • Complete Mix •
4thMix The Beat Goes On • Gottamix • 5thMix Time To Get
Down • Complete Mix 2 • Club Mix
Dreams Come True
• Best Hits •
Gottamix 2 Going Global • Core
• The Sound of Tokyo • 6thMix The UK
Underground Music • 7thMix Keepin Evolution • The Final
Complete Mix • Complete Mix
Game Boy • Wonderswan •
Computer • Pocket
|List of games • List of