Soundtrack Central The best of VGM and other great soundtracks

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Princess-Isabela Apr 3, 2006 (edited Apr 3, 2006)

though I picked many previous Beatmania games many years ago(imports), US release is really good - its not the best, but I think they did great job on soundtrack to it, not to mention controller for IIDX rocks.
my only complaint is that game is way too simple - especially US tracks that were added(they only have beginner, normal, hyper difficulty - no "another" for those).
I strongly suggest Bundle with controller - without it, game just doesnt make any sense.
and of course price is veeeeery attractive, you cant go wrong if you have patience and you're willing to spend months of training to become serious DJ.
anyone else picked it up yet?
and if so, what do you guys think?
my personal score - 9.5/10
ign and gamespot apparently had really inappropriate reviewers for this amazing game(probably not experienced when it comes to a music games), they scored it terribly.
so whats your opinion?

Sabreman Apr 3, 2006

I haven't ever been able to try them (I think only the first one on PS1 came out in the UK, and I missed out), but music games are among my favourite genre. I was incredibly addicted to Frequency and Amplitude, the Space Channel 5s and Gitaroo Man so it would be natural for me to seek out Beatmania games. I think the thing putting me off is always the cost of importing one with a controller - and the possibility of finding that I don't enjoy it much in the end. Take Guitar Hero for example... great game but I just don't have that independent left/right hand coordination required for it. I've come to a brick wall in the difficulty and I doubt I'll ever crack it.

Crash Apr 3, 2006

Well, Beatmania in general has a steep learning curve.  You do develop the skills to use your left and right hands together, but it takes time, and even then, most people have a dominant hand that handles most of the keys.  Some notecharts, though, make your hands do all sorts of crazy combinations (like the 1+3+5+7 to 2+4+6 rolls in V [A]).  It gets to be a lot of fun, but it is hard in the beginning.  I don't think I passed anything harder than 5.1.1 [L7] the first time I played.

As for the game itself, it's pretty balanced.  There are a couple of real losers on the songlist (SNOW, M-02stp.ver1.01), but plenty of awesome songs (LOVE IS DREAMINESS, BAD BOY BASS!! (dj Remo-con MIX), Attitude, era(nostalmix), g.m.d.).  The US exclusive songs are kind of hit-or-miss for me.  I love Funkytown, but groan at the thought of playing Toxic again.  The difficulty is pretty evenly spaced, as opposed to more recent Japanese console games: on 10th Style alone, there are around 50 songs that are either 7 or 8 stars on 7Key mode.  Beatmania US has some easier songs and some really tough ones (Colors, V, Nemesis).

All in all, it's a well-balanced game that can appeal both to the beginner and the expert.  The addition of 5Key songs was a good idea, as it can help beginners break into the game and give the seasoned pros some songs they likely haven't played.

One word of warning:  some songs are offbeat (particularly 5Key songs).  Some examples are e-motion and Manmachine plays Jazz.  You WILL not get good scores on these songs.  They are not glitches in the US game; the US game just copied the timing from the original games.  There are some who are glad they did not correct the timing of these notorious songs because it makes it a real challenge to get high scores on them.  For example, there are more people who can AAA V [A] than can AAA e-motion [7], and I don't think I've heard of anyone ever getting a AAA on e-motion [A].

shdwrlm3 Apr 3, 2006

I've never really been too big a fan of beatmania's song selection. That and the steep learning curve keeps me from really getting into it.

What's really keeping me from getting it, however, is my experience with DDR in the US. I spent a lot of money trying to support DDR in the US, and what I got in return was KoA and KoJ continually holding out on making the best mix possible in order to squeeze more money out of us. From what I've heard and read, Beatmania is the same way. With 10+ releases out in Japan, they really could (no, should) have come out with something extraordinary. Instead, we get something "to test the waters" yet again, despite the growing popularity of music games like DDR and Guitar Hero.

People keep saying that if you want a mix exactly like the Japanese mix, then you should go buy the Japanese version, but that logic never made sense to me. The very reason I supported DDR in the US was so that I wouldn't have to spend loads of money importing them. I certainly didn't buy all of the early DDR releases so they could saddle us with mix after mix of incomplete songlists, tons of repeats, missing features, and outdated interfaces.

Bitter much? Why, yes. Yes I am ^_^

I certainly hope Beatmania finds a following in the US, but I'll wait for the 5th or 6th version to come out (around when KoA and KoJ started to put, you know, effort into DDR) before plunking down any money for it. I hear that Beatmania is on a short production run anyway, so I don't want to go through the trouble of trying to track a copy down. It was an absolute nightmare trying to find the first DDR USA in stores when it first came out.

I do hear that the US controller is actually much better than the Japanese controller, though, and lots of people are getting the bundle just to get a relatively cheap controller.

Now someone make Konami port DanceManiax to home systems.

Princess-Isabela Apr 7, 2006

thats another thing - Konami of America is trying to put nice song selection, but when you're seeing DDR Extreme (JPN version), its just sad to see how awful US version really is.
Konami KCEE knows what they're doing, (putting fun and best songs in JPN edition such as - Max 300, Max Unlimited, Legend of Max, Max Period), while US edition has only Legend of Max, maybe its due to the fact that these may be too hard for US gamers...I dont know.
Beatmania - JPN edition has tracks from Akira Yamaoka, Sampling Masters and so on, while US again totally lacks in this department.
maybe next releases of Bemani Games will imporove on track selection - I hope.

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