Glossary

This is a comprehensive glossary of modern DanceDanceRevolution terminology and slang.

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Bemani

Konami

The Japanese entertainment company behind DDR and other Bemani games. Konami is best known in North America for console & PC videogames like Metal Gear and Silent Hill.

Bemani

Konami's rhythm game division, which includes DanceDanceRevolution, DANCERUSH STARDOM, beatmania IIDX, SOUND VOLTEX, jubeat, pop'n music, GITADORA, NOSTALGIA, and other inactive titles.

573

The Konami Number, found in default highscore lists on older DDR mixes and in the system names for the original "Dance Dance Revolution" hardware. In modern times, the number has been largely relegated to Bemani memes.

DDR (DanceDanceRevolution)

Also known as: Dance Dance Revolution

The game series that this website is all about! To play DDR, step on the dance stage's panels whenever a note scrolls onto the corresponding receptor on the screen.

The latest version (or mix) of DDR is DanceDanceRevolution A20.

Mix

Also known as: Version

Individual installments of DDR are called "mixes"; there have been 17 arcade DDR mixes to date, along with a variety of home console releases. The two latest mixes (and the primary focus of this website) are DDR A and DDR A20.

DDR A (DanceDanceRevolution A)

Also known as: Ace

The 2016 installment of DDR, pronounced "Ace". This mix is noteworthy for being the first mix to bring online functionality (e.g. leaderboards and score tracking) to North America. Most arcades have since upgraded their DDR A cabinet software to run DDR A20.

DDR A20 (DanceDanceRevolution A20)

Also known as: A20

The latest installment of DDR, announced in 2018 to celebrate the game series' 20th anniversary, then released in 2019. "A20" is officially pronounced "Ace two-oh", but often read literally as "A-twenty".

There are two versions of A20 available, depending on the cabinet model. Gold cabinets feature A20 with a gold color theme, whereas white cabinets have a slightly different version of A20 with a blue color theme reminiscent of DDR A.

Dave & Buster's

Also known as: D&B

An American restaurant & entertainment chain that provides many arcade games, including the white cabinet model of DDR at select locations.

ROUND1

Also known as: R1, Round One

A Japanese amusement chain that provides many arcade games, including a wide variety of Bemani games like DDR. Most of its US locations have the new gold cabinet model of DDR, in addition to one or two white cabinets running either DDR A or A20.

Charts

Song

You know, like, music. Every song has a jacket (square artwork) and a number of charts associated with it - no more than one per difficulty per gameplay mode (SP or DP).

"Song" is often informally used as a synonym for stage.

Chart

Also known as: Pattern, Sequence

A gameplay sequence for a particular song. Each chart has a difficulty, level, and groove radar displayed on the song selection screen. During gameplay, the chart lays out where notes (and other gameplay elements like shock arrows and speed changes) are placed.

Folder

Also known as: Group

A collection of songs on the music selection screen.

Songs can be sorted into folders in a variety of different ways, depending on what category is selected. While inside a folder, briefly holding the Up + Down buttons will close it.

Screenshot of the music selection screen, with annotations for the categories, folder, and songs.Click to open in new tab

Category

Also known as: Sort

One of the views of all the songs on the music selection screen. The category determines what kind of folders are shown.

Categories can be found between the list of folders, or by briefly holding the Left + Right buttons. Songs can be sorted by level, course, event, song title, genre, version, BEMANI series, and each player's clear rank.

Screenshot of the music selection screen, with annotations for the categories, folder, and songs.Click to open in new tab

Sync

Also known as: Offsync, Early, Late

A measure of how precisely the notes match a song's audio. If a chart is offsync, the players may have to hit the notes slightly early or late compared to the beat of the song in order to consistently get Marvelous judgements.

Difficulty

One of five slots for charts in ascending order of, well, difficulty. These include Beginner (SP only), Basic, Difficult, Expert, and Challenge (only on some songs).

"Difficulty" is often used to refer to a chart's level, too.

Level

Also known as: Rating, Meter

A number assigned to each chart denoting how hard it is to clear relative to all other charts in the game. Currently, levels range from 1 to 19.

Trivia

Prior to DanceDanceRevolution X, levels ranged from 1 to 10. During this time, 10s corresponded to charts as easy as modern-day 13s and as hard as modern-day 18s - perhaps you can see why the scale was expanded.

Beginner

The easiest difficulty in the game on SP, below Basic.

Beginner charts typically range in level from 1 to 6, but can go as high as 9 on some boss songs.

Basic

The difficulty above Beginner (SP only) and below Difficult. On DP, this is the easiest difficulty.

Basic charts typically range in level from 3 to 11, but can go as low as 1 (DP) or 2 (SP) on some older songs and as high as 13 on some boss songs.

Difficult

The difficulty above Basic and below Expert.

Difficult charts typically range in level from 6 to 14, but can go as low as 4 on some older songs and as high as 15 on some boss songs.

Expert

The difficulty above Difficult and below Challenge, when present.

Expert charts typically range in level from 8 to 17, but can go as low as 6 on some older songs and as high as 18 on some boss songs.

Challenge

Also known as: Oni (outdated)

The difficulty above Expert. Only some songs have a Challenge chart; those that do will have one on both SP and DP. Challenge charts typically range in level from 10 to 18, but can go as low as 6 on some older songs and as high as 19 on some boss songs.

A small number of songs only have Challenge charts available; players must use an e-amusement pass to access these songs, in order to prevent casual players from accidentally selecting them.

Trivia

Some songs have Challenge charts that are easier than the Expert chart, as the Challenge difficulty sometimes denotes an "experimental" chart, rather than a hard one.

BSP (Basic Single Play)

BSP refers to Basic Single Play; a double chart in the Basic difficulty slot.

bSP (with a lowercase "b") refers to Beginner Single Play.

BDP (Basic Double Play)

A double chart in the Basic difficulty slot.

DSP (Difficult Single Play)

A single chart in the Difficult difficulty slot.

DDP (Difficult Double Play)

A double chart in the Difficult difficulty slot.

ESP (Expert Single Play)

A single chart in the Expert difficulty slot.

EDP (Expert Double Play)

A double chart in the Expert difficulty slot.

CSP (Challenge Single Play)

A single chart in the Challenge difficulty slot.

CDP (Challenge Double Play)

A double chart in the Challenge difficulty slot.

Combos & Lamps

Combo

An indicator of how many notes the player has hit consecutively without obtaining any misses. Jumps and avoided shock arrows both increment the combo by one; holding freeze notes to the end does not increment the combo.

Maintaining a combo until the end of the song is known as a "Full Combo" or FC, although this is usually further qualified with the lowest judgement obtained: GFC, PFC, or MFC.

MFC (Marvelous Full Combo)

Also known as: Marvelous Sweep, Miff (slang)

A score obtained by getting a Marvelous judgement on every step, with no misses.

This is the highest score in the game, corresponding to a money score of 1,000,000.

The folder for MFCs when browsing the "CLEAR RANK" category is labeled "MARVELOUS SWEEP".

Trivia

All Single charts rated 14 (and most rated 13 and lower) have been MFC'd by at least one player. Only one MFC on an 18 has ever been recorded: CHRS4LFE's MFC of Fascination ~eternal love mix~.

PFC (Perfect Full Combo)

Also known as: Piff (slang)

A score obtained by getting either a Marvelous or Perfect judgement on every step, with no misses.

The score for a PFC will be 1,000,000 minus the number of Perfect judgements obtained times 10.

Trivia

All Single charts rated 18 and lower have been PFC'd by at least one player. Only one PFC on a 19 has ever been recorded: CHRS4LFE's PFC of EGOISM 440 CSP on December 13, 2017.

All Double charts rated 16 and lower have been PFC'd by at least one player. All but one DP 17 have been PFC'd; the one remaining is Dopamine EDP. Some DP 18s have been PFC'd. No DP 19 has ever been PFC'd.

GFC (Great Full Combo)

A score obtained by getting either a Marvelous, Perfect, or Great judgement on every step, with no misses.

The score for any GFC will typically be lower than any PFC on the same chart, due to Greats costing significantly more points off of the maximum than Perfects, although this is not always the case.

In previous versions of DDR, a Great Full Combo was the lowest FC because Good judgements broke combo. Due to this, some players swap the definitions of FC and GFC.

Trivia

All Single charts rated 18 and lower have been not only GFC'd, but PFC'd by at least one player. Some SP 19s have been GFC'd.

All Double charts rated 17 and lower have been GFC'd by at least one player. Many DP 18s have been GFC'd as well.

FC (Full Combo)

Also known as: Good Full Combo, Blue Full Combo, BFC

A score obtained by clearing a stage with no misses. Good judgements do not break combo in DDR A, so a FC is distinct from (and more permissive than) a GFC.

In previous versions of DDR, a Good Full Combo was impossible because Good judgements broke combo. Due to this, some players swap the definitions of FC and GFC.

Trivia

All but one Single chart have been FC'd by at least one player; the one remaining is ENDYMION CSP.

All Double charts rated 17 and lower have been not only FC'd, but GFC'd by at least one player. Most DP 18s have been FC'd as well. No DP 19s have been FC'd by anyone.

Flag

Also known as: Black flag

Informal term which typically denotes a score that misses a PFC by one Great. Sometimes also used to describe an MFC missed by one Perfect.

A "true black flag" indicates that the lone Great or Perfect judgement was obtained on the last note of the chart.

SDP (Single-Digit Perfects)

A PFC with the added constraint of fewer than 10 Perfect judgements.

The score for a SDP will be between 999,910 (9 Perfects) and 999,990 (1 Perfect, a type of flag).

SDG (Single-Digit Greats)

A GFC with the added constraint of fewer than 10 Great judgements.

Lamp

Also known as: Song lamp, Folder lamp

A visual indicator of the highest clear level a player has obtained on a song or folder. On the song selection screen, lamps appear as two colored bars on the sides of each song jacket or folder entry. In Versus Mode, each bar corresponds to each player; otherwise, both bars correspond to the single player.

Song lamps are independent of the player's high score; obtaining a higher score with a lower clear level does not decrease the lamp's clear level. Folder lamps correspond to the lowest clear level in the folder; for example, to obtain a FC folder lamp, every song in the folder must have a FC or higher clear level.

Here is the ordering and lamp color of the different clear levels:

Screenshot of the music selection screen, with annotations for each player's song and folder lamps.Click to open in new tab

Trivia

On SP, the highest level folder on which any player has obtained an MFC lamp is 14 (by CHRS4LFE). For PFC lamps, the highest is 18, obtained by multiple players. Currently, no player has documented a clear level higher than the normal clear lamp on the SP 19 folder (although o4ma. had a FC lamp prior to ENDYMION CSP's release).

Community Lingo

YB (Yabai)

Also known as: やばい

"Yabai" / "やばい", a Japanese slang term used by DDR players that roughly translates to "OMG" or "awesome".

HYF (How You Figure)

Also known as: HYFF

"How You Figure" or "How You F---in' Figure", an informal acronym expressing incredulity, usually directed at some accomplishment by another player.

MAW (Might As Well...)

Also known as: MAWM, MAWP

"Might As Well (Piff / Miff)", an informal acronym typically used in response to a score that's nearly a PFC or MFC.

When used in response to someone else's score, the term has positive connotations; it implies that the PFC / MFC is well within the player's reach, and they "might as well" replay it to achieve that score.

Can check

A social media catchphrase that's usually attached to a photo of the player's drink before or during their DDR session.

Corny

Also known as: 🌽, cornafrn

Highly contextual social media slang. In the context of a score post, "corny MA" or "corny chart" usually has negative connotations. However, replies containing the corn emoji (🌽) and neologisms involving "corn" are typically positive, meant to compare the score to the player who popularized the "corn" meme, CHRS4LFE.

GOAT (Greatest of All Time)

"Greatest of All Time", a superlative usually (though not exclusively) applied to player CHRS4LFE.

Gameplay elements

Receptors

The visual element typically seen at the top of the screen used by players to determine when to hit each note. Each panel being used in the current gameplay mode has a corresponding arrow-shaped receptor towards which notes will scroll. The receptors flash in sync with the music on each quarter note.

Players can hide the receptors by setting the "Step zone" option to "HIDDEN", or place the receptors at the bottom of the screen by setting the "Scroll" option to "REVERSE".

Note

The main scoring element during gameplay, represented visually by an arrow scrolling towards the receptors. Players try to step on the corresponding panel as close as possible to the moment when the arrow coincides with its receptor; the game assigns them a judgement based on how precisely they timed their step.

Jump

Two different notes on the same horizontal row, typically hit by jumping with both feet onto the corresponding panels.

Freeze note

Also known as: Freeze, Hold note, Hold

A special note where the player must keep the corresponding panel pressed until the "tail" of the freeze note has passed.

Trivia

Freeze notes were introduced in DDRMAX -DanceDance Revolution 6thMIX-.

Shock arrow

Also known as: Shock notes, Shocks

A special gameplay element represented visually by four lightning-strung arrows in a row scrolling towards the receptors. Players must avoid standing on the corresponding panels when it passes in order to avoid triggering the shock arrow, which causes a miss and briefly obscures the scrolling notes.

Trivia

Shock arrows were introduced in DanceDanceRevolution X.

Speed change

Also known as: Speed gimmick, Gimmick, Timing change, Timing gimmick

Speed changes include BPM changes and stops. These are typically shared across all charts for a song, although on rare occasions specific charts may have separate speed changes from the other charts. There is no visual indication that a speed change is about to occur, so players may wish to memorize the locations of speed changes for some songs.

Trivia

The only songs that have different speed changes for different charts are ACE FOR ACES (Beginner/Basic have no speed changes, all other difficulties have their own distinct speed changes) and CHAOS Terror-Tech Mix (only Challenge has separate speed changes).

BPM change

Also known as: Speedup, Slowdown

A speed change where the scroll speed increases or decreases. These typically occur in powers of two, i.e. doubling or halving the scroll speed, and are typically placed to follow the subjective "intensity" of the song.

BPM changes can also be used in very small increments to correct the timing on "drifty" songs.

Stop

Also known as: Stutter gimmick, Stutter

A speed change where the scroll speed comes to a complete halt. These are typically placed to accent moments in the song where the music goes quiet, or on particular percussive hits.

Rapid-fire stops can create what players call a "stutter gimmick", where the scroll speed is effectively reduced in a choppy motion without any BPM change.

Life gauge

An indicator of the player's performance, displayed above the receptors. The normal life gauge is a continuous meter that starts out half-full, rises slowly as combo increases, and depletes quickly when the player incurs a miss. The normal gauge can be replaced with the LIFE4 or RISKY gauge in the player's modifiers before each song. Depleting the life gauge completely results in a failing grade, and the player's score is frozen.

Hardware

Cabinet

Also known as: Game cabinet, Cab

The physical unit that houses the game display, navigation buttons, e-amusement scanner, and the computer running the game. The cabinet connects to a dance stage to register player inputs.

White cabinet

The model of DDR cabinets released alongside DDR A, mostly seen in North America. These cabinets can be found at various Round1 and Dave & Buster's locations in the United States. Many of these cabinets have been upgraded to DDR A20 as of October 2019 at both major chains, although some are still running DDR A.

Gold cabinet

The model of DDR cabinets released alongside DDR A20. These cabinets can be found at most Round1 locations in the United States. In addition to the new cabinet & dance stage design, gold cabinets offer some exclusive A20 features like Dan courses and exclusive new songs.

Dance stage

Also known as: Stage, Dance pad, Pads

The physical box that houses the panels and connects to the main game cabinet. Players typically stand on this stage during gameplay.

Panel

Also known as: Arrow

One of the primary gameplay inputs, typically activated by a player stepping onto it. There are four panels per side, for a total of eight panels on a standard dance stage.

Bar

Also known as: Rail

The painted metal rail affixed behind each set of four panels. Many players hold the bar to maintain balance during gameplay.

Modes & Stages

SP (Single Play)

Also known as: Singles

Gameplay mode where one player plays on one side of the dance stage (four panels). Also refers to the charts accessible through this mode and Versus Play.

DP (Double Play)

Also known as: Doubles

Gameplay mode where one player plays on both sides of the dance stage (eight panels). Also refers to the charts accessible through this mode.

Versus Play

Gameplay mode where two players play on one side of the dance stage each (four panels each). Both players must share song picks for each stage, but can select different single charts and options for themselves.

Session

The unit of gameplay associated with a player's entire arcade visit, typically comprising multiple games, with optional breaks between games.

Players might say "set" to mean "session" or "game"".

Game

Also known as: Set

The unit of gameplay purchased with each card swipe at an arcade. Players typically start each game by swiping their e-amusement pass and choosing their gameplay mode, then play 3-4 stages (depending on the cabinet's configuration and whether they meet the requirements for an Extra Stage).

Of course, the word "game" can also refer to the DDR videogame itself, and other videogames. Context is key.

Players might say "set" to mean "game" or "session".

Stage

Also known as: Round

The unit of gameplay associated with a player's choice of song and chart. Most cabinets are configured for 3 stages per game, with the possibility of gaining an Extra Stage after the normal stages. Some songs can only be played during the Final Stage, and others yet are gated behind the Extra Stage.

Premium Play guarantees that all 3 stages will be played, regardless of whether the player fails or not. Without Premium Play, failing a stage ends the game immediately.

Final Stage

The last of the normal stages, typically the third stage. Some event songs may be exclusive to this stage. In order to access the Extra Stage, the Final Stage must be cleared, in addition to meeting the result star requirements.

Extra Stage

A bonus stage that can be gained at the end of a game using Premium Play. Extra Stage can be used to unlock Extra Savior songs and play Extra Exclusive songs, but it forces the LIFE4 gauge and ends the stage immediately if all players fail.

In order to access this stage, the Final Stage must be cleared with the result star gauge filled. On DDR A only, result stars are also automatically added to a player's account after each game when they have reached certain Heat Power levels.

During rare events, it's possible to obtain yet another stage after this one: the Encore Extra Stage.

Full details on the Extra Stage requirements and exclusive songs can be found on RemyWiki's DDR A and DDR A20 pages.

Extra Exclusive

A special song folder that can only be accessed in the Extra Stage, containing songs that are temporarily exclusive to the Extra Stage.

Extra Savior

A DDR A exclusive unlock mechanic consisting of a variety of special song folders that can only be accessed in the Extra Stage. The exact unlock mechanics vary from event to event, but in general, clearing an Extra Savior chart will unlock it for play during normal stages, and unlocking all charts for a song will remove it from the Extra Savior folder (as it can be found in the corresponding DDR mix folder). Full details on the unlock requirements for Extra Savior songs can be found on RemyWiki's DDR A page.

In DDR A20, the unlockable songs from DDR A are unlocked for normal play for everyone.

Result Star

The gameplay mechanic which enables access to the Extra Stage when using Premium Play. After each stage, up to three result stars are awarded per player. If all nine slots are filled after clearing the Final Stage, the Extra Stage will commence and the result star gauge will reset to empty on the next game. The result star gauge is shared when two players are present, and carries over for subsequent games when not completely filled.

Clearing a stage with a grade of AAA awards 3 stars. Otherwise, clearing with a grade of AA- or higher awards 2 stars, and clearing with a grade of A+ or lower awards 1 star. Additionally, obtaining a full combo or playing on the LIFE4 or RISKY gauge both award a bonus star, up to the maximum of 3.

Heat Power

A DDR A exclusive mechanic that primarily affects the Extra Stage. Heat Power is represented by a 7-bar gauge that starts empty on each day (divided by e-amusement maintenance periods) and increases by one after every game a player completes on Premium Play. At 3 bars, the player enters Heat Power level 2, and at a full 7 bars the player enters Heat Power level 3.

On DDR A, some Extra Exclusive songs could only be played at a particular Heat Power level. Additionally, higher Heat Power levels provided the player with bonus result stars that made it easier to obtain the Extra Stage (level 2 gave 3 stars and level 3 gave 9 stars).

DDR A20 has no Heat Power or equivalent mechanic; there are no bonus Result Stars awarded at the end of each game.

Encore Extra Stage

Also known as: Encore Stage, One More Extra Stage, OMES

A special stage following the Encore Stage that can only be accessed during certain events. This stage does not allow the player to control the song, chart, or options, and the stage ends immediately if the player receives a judgement of Great, Good, or Miss. Currently, there is no way to access the Encore Extra Stage as there is no active event that makes use of it.

Trivia

The last time Encore Extra Stage was accessible ranged from July 12, 2017 to April 26, 2018, during the "Rinon's Adventure" event finale for DDR A. Clearing the Extra Exclusive song ENDYMION on Expert with a grade of AA+ or higher would trigger the Encore Extra Stage with the song ACE FOR ACES on Difficult. The difficulty requirements were gradually relaxed over the following months until ACE FOR ACES was ultimately made available outside of the Encore Extra Stage.

Course

Also known as: Nonstop, Dan

A DDR A20 exclusive mechanic that automatically plays through four pre-selected songs on a chosen difficulty. Courses can only be selected during the first stage on Premium Play; the game will end after the course has been completed, with no opportunity for an Extra Stage.

Some courses are region-locked due to the songs they contain. Additionally, Dan courses are exclusive to gold cabinets, which is currently only accessible in Japan. Refer to the RemyWiki page on Dan Courses for more details.

Online features

e-amusement

Also known as: eAmuse, EA

An online service provided by Konami that enhances DDR gameplay in a variety of ways. Players swipe an e-amusement pass near the cabinet's card reader to authenticate at the start of each game.

The e-amusement website is p.eagate.573.jp. From here you can register an account, link an e-amusement card, and set various options for DDR gameplay like guide lines, arrow type, screen filter and more.

For more information on registering an e-amusement card, refer to the bemanistyle article How to: Japanese KONAMI ID registration & e-amusement pass management. Heed the note about leaving your region set to Japan if you intend to purchase the Basic Course.

Premium Play

A gameplay mode for online cabinets that enables many game mechanics, including the Extra Stage, more granular speed choices, and guaranteed play of 3 songs regardless of whether the first two stages are cleared.

On North American cabinets, Premium Play is available for no additional cost; in Japan, it typically costs PASELI or additional game credits.

Basic Course

An e-amusement subscription feature that enables DDR players to view their scores through the e-amusement website, change additional options like judgement display priority and timing judgement display, and more. This feature is paid for using PASELI.

For more information on purchasing the Basic Course and PASELI, refer to the bemanistyle guide e-amusement How to: Charging PASELI and Basic Course Subscription. Note that purchasing BitCash is no longer required for players in North America, as the e-amusement website now accepts non-Japanese credit cards for payment.

You can also refer to Sanbai Ice Cream's setup tutorial, which guides you through the same process in a streamlined fashion.

PASELI

Konami's in-house currency for arcade games, used to pay for the Basic Course for an enhanced DDR experience.

For more information on purchasing the Basic Course and PASELI, refer to the bemanistyle guide e-amusement How to: Charging PASELI and Basic Course Subscription. Note that purchasing BitCash is no longer required for players in North America, as the e-amusement website now accepts non-Japanese credit cards for payment.

You can also refer to Sanbai Ice Cream's setup tutorial, which guides you through the same process in a streamlined fashion.

e-amusement extended maintenance

Also known as: Third Monday, Maintenance Monday

A recurring time period during which the e-amusement service is unavailable for all Bemani games, on the third Tuesday of every month in Japan from 2:00-7:00 AM. In North America, this corresponds to sometime midday on the previous calendar Monday, depending on the timezone. For example, in Pacific Daylight Time the maintenance window lasts from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

During this time, DDR cabinets are effectively offline; Premium Play can't be used and play data won't be saved.

Leaderboard

Also known as: LB

An in-game display of some of the highscores on a chart. Leaderboards typically show the world record, regional record, and machine record, as well as the player's personal record and those of up to 3 of their rivals (if they have configured this feature on the e-amusement website). These records are sorted by score and display the player's name and the score they obtained.

PB (Personal Best)

Also known as: Improvement, Personal Record, Upscore (slang)

A score on a chart that exceeds the player's previous highscore. The player's personal record is displayed on the leaderboard on the song selection screen, as well as next to the list of charts for the selected song.

WR (World Record)

A score on a chart that exceeds all other scores on that chart. The player and score associated with this record are displayed at the top of the leaderboard on the song selection screen.

Trivia

In DDR, tying a world record replaces the old record on the leaderboards, although players generally qualify this as a "tied WR" regardless of how the game treats it.

Machine Record

A score on a chart that exceeds all other scores on that chart that were obtained on the same cabinet. The player and score associated with this record are displayed near the top of the leaderboard on the song selection screen.

Rival

In DDR, a "rival" is one of up to 10 players who each player can choose through the e-amusement website for comparing scores. Of these ten players, any 3 can be marked as "active" to appear on the in-game leaderboards.

Options

Option

Also known as: Modifier, Mod

A configurable aspect of gameplay. The option menu is accessible by pressing "9" on the cabinet's number pad, or by holding the green button when selecting a song or chart. Here are the options available:

  • Speed: Multiplies the speed at which the notes scroll. See Speed for additional details.
  • Boost: When enabled, the scroll speed changes as notes move across the screen. Choices are:
    • NORMAL (default)
    • BOOST (notes accelerate as they approach the receptors)
    • BRAKE (notes decelerate as they approach the receptors)
    • WAVE (notes alternate accelerating and decelerating as they scroll)
  • Appearance: When enabled, the notes are covered from one side of the screen. Choices are:
    • VISIBLE (default)
    • HIDDEN+ (notes are covered as they approach the receptors)
    • SUDDEN+ (notes are covered away from the receptors)
    • HIDDEN+&SUDDEN+ (both lane covers are in effect)
    • STEALTH (notes are invisible)
      • During gameplay, HIDDEN+ and SUDDEN+ can be toggled by pressing the green button and adjusted vertically using the Up/Down buttons.
  • Turn: When enabled, the chart is transformed such that the notes are rotated or mirrored around the pad. (The receptors do not change order or position; the chart can still be read normally, but the notes to hit will be in different lanes.) Choices are:
    • NORMAL (default)
    • LEFT (chart is rotated counterclockwise)
    • RIGHT (chart is rotated clockwise)
    • MIRROR (chart is mirrored across the receptors - or, equivalently, rotated 180°)
    • SHUFFLE (arrow lanes are shuffled according to a randomly chosen permutation, out of 8 possible permutations)
      • LEFT, RIGHT, and SHUFFLE are not available on double play.
  • Step zone: Toggles visibility of the receptors. Choices are "ON" (default) and "OFF" (receptors are invisible).
  • Scroll: Toggles which direction the notes scroll. Choices are:
    • NORMAL (notes scroll up to the receptors at the top)
    • REVERSE (notes scroll down to the receptors at the bottom)
  • Arrow color: Changes the color of the notes. This is a distinct option from arrow type, which can only be configured from the e-amusement website. Choices are:
    • RAINBOW (notes have animated colors according to their quantization)
    • NOTE (notes have solid colors according to their quantization)
    • VIVID (notes are random rainbow colors)
    • FLAT (notes are all the same rainbow color)
  • Cut: An assist option that removes notes from the chart based on their quantization. Choices are:
    • OFF (default)
    • ON1 (only quarter notes are kept; all other notes are removed)
    • ON2 (only quarter and eighth notes are kept; all other notes are removed)
  • Freeze arrow: An assist option that removes freeze notes from the chart. Choices are "ON" (default) and "OFF" (freeze notes are removed).
  • Jumps: An assist option that removes jumps from the chart. Choices are "ON" (default) and "OFF" (jumps are removed).
  • Gauge: Determines the life gauge to use. Choices are:
    • NORMAL (default)
    • LIFE4 (four misses fails the stage)
    • RISKY (one miss fails the stage and ends gameplay immediately)

Options persist for each player between stages, and across subsequent games and other cabinets.

When a cabinet is offline, only Speed, Scroll, Cut, Freeze arrow, and Jumps are available; all other options are locked to their default choices.

Tip

The most important option is the first one, Speed, which most players change for every stage. You may also want to set your Arrow Color to NOTE to more easily read the quantization of notes.

Speed

Also known as: Rate, X-mod

How fast the notes and other gameplay elements scroll across the screen. As an option, the player's choice of speed multiplies the baseline "x1.0" speed, where consecutive quarter note arrows are directly adjacent to one another (no overlap and no space between the arrows). Lower numbers correspond to slower scrolling; for example, selecting x0.5 will cause consecutive quarter notes to overlap halfway, whereas selecting 2x will space consecutive quarter notes apart by an arrow's worth of space.

Speed can be adjusted from the Options menu before each stage. In Premium Play, the options are x0.25-x4.0 in increments of 0.25, then x4.5-x8.0 in increments of 0.5. Without Premium Play, the options are limited to x1.0-x8.0 in increments of 0.5.

The speed can also be adjusted during gameplay, prior to the first note of the chart, by pressing the Left or Right buttons on the cabinet to decrease or increase the speed, respectively. The only exception is during the Encore Extra Stage, during which this method of changing the speed is disabled.

Trivia

RemyWiki documents which DDR mix each speed option was introduced in.

SUDDEN+

A choice under the "Appearance" option that players use to assist in reading charts with BPM changes. Specifically, by turning SUDDEN+ on during the slow sections (and off otherwise), some players find it easier to concentrate on the reduced number of notes visible.

During gameplay, SUDDEN+ can be toggled by pressing the green button and adjusted vertically using the Up/Down buttons. This requires careful planning because using the cabinet buttons during gameplay typically requires stepping off of the dance stage briefly. As such, the technique is only helpful if there is a gap in the notes long enough for the player to toggle SUDDEN+ when necessary.

LIFE4

Also known as: Hard clear

A life gauge mode where the player starts the stage with 4 "lives" that can be lost by missing notes. The gauge display above the receptors is replaced with four discrete cells indicating how many lives remain. Lives cannot be regained during the song. Losing all four lives has the same effect as depleting the normal life gauge.

During Extra Stage, the life gauge is forced onto LIFE4 mode, and losing all four lives will additionally obscure the notefield for that player (either with a "Game Over" display if another player is still playing, or by transitioning to the "Failed" screen immediately otherwise).

Trivia

All SP charts have been LIFE4 cleared by at least one player.

All DP charts rated 17 and below have been not only LIFE4 cleared, but GFC'd by at least one player. Almost all DP 18s have been LIFE4 cleared as well; notably, Pluto Relinquish CDP has not been LIFE4 cleared yet. At least one DP 19 has been LIFE4 cleared - POSSESSION CDP, by FEFEMZ.

"LIFE4" also refers to the community-led LIFE4 ranking system.

RISKY

A life gauge mode where the player starts the stage with 1 "life" that can be lost by obtaining a Miss judgement. The gauge display appears the same as the LIFE4 gauge, except the first three cells are already empty when the song starts. The song immediately ends if all players fail on the RISKY life gauge.

By definition, clearing a song using the RISKY life gauge is at minimum a FC, so there is no separate clear level for RISKY clears.

Guide lines

Horizontal lines that optionally appear behind the notes during gameplay. Choices include "OFF" (no lines), "BORDER" (lines separate beats), and "CENTER" (default; lines denote beats). The brighter lines indicate measures.

Guide lines can be toggled from the e-amusement website; once logged in, click this link to set your choice, then press the first of the two buttons at the bottom to save.

Arrow type

Also known as: Noteskin, Normal, X, Classic, Cyber, Medium, Small, Dot

The visual appearance of the notes during gameplay. Choices include "Normal" (default), "X", "Classic", "Cyber", "Medium", "Small", and "Dot".

Arrow type can be changed through the e-amusement website; once logged in, click this link to set your arrow type, then press the first of the two buttons at the bottom to save.

Screen filter

Also known as: Dark, Darker, Darkest

A filter behind the notes during gameplay that darkens the background for easier reading of notes. Choices include "Off", "Dark" (default), "Darker", and "Darkest".

Screen filter can be changed through the e-amusement website; once logged in, click this link to set your screen filter, then press the first of the two buttons at the bottom to save.

Judgement display priority

An option exclusive to Basic Course subscribers that changes whether the judgement and combo indicators appear in front of or behind the notes during gameplay. By default, the judgement and combo indicators appear in front of the notes.

Judgement display priority can be changed through the e-amusement website; once logged in, click this link to set your choice, then press the first of the two buttons at the bottom to save.

Timing judgement display

Also known as: Fast/Slow, Slow/Fast

An option exclusive to Basic Course subscribers that adds an indicator above the combo for whether a note hit with a non-Marvelous judgement was pressed too fast (early) or too slow (late) relative to the Marvelous timing window. By default, the timing judgement display is disabled.

Timing judgement display can be changed through the e-amusement website; once logged in, click this link to set your choice, then press the first of the two buttons at the bottom to save.

Patterns

Pattern

A particular sequence of notes, typically categorized by the techniques required to hit the notes rather than the specific arrows involved. For example, a crossover pattern can involve many different sequences of notes, as long as the result of hitting the arrows normally results in one leg "crossing over" the other.

"Pattern" can also be synonymous with "chart", although this is uncommon among English-speaking players.

Crossover

Also known as: Turn

A pattern which normally requires the player to cross one leg over the other.

Lateral crossover

Also known as: Laterals, Scoobie (slang), Afronova walk (outdated)

A specific type of crossover pattern in which the player's left and right feet are momentarily positioned on the right and left panels, respectively.

The informal term "scooby" or "scoobies" refers to rapid-fire lateral crossovers like LDRLUR or RDLRUL, such as those seen near the end of Mei CSP.

Double-step

A pattern in which the same foot is used to hit two consecutive notes on different panels. These are most often seen in conjunction with freeze notes, where one foot is anchored to a particular panel and the other foot must hit notes on the other three panels.

More generally, double-stepping is a technique that players can use to hit any pattern, especially crossovers. There are a variety of reasons to do this; some players may find it more difficult to time their steps precisely when their legs are crossed over, or may struggle to combo crossovers due to missing the panels. Players may also use double-steps to strategically orient their body in preparation for an upcoming pattern.

Jack

A pattern in which multiple consecutive notes must be hit on the same panel. These patterns are typically executed by using the same foot to hit each note, although players may choose to alternate feet, depending on which panel is used and how fast the arrows must be hit.

Drill

A pattern characterized by a monotonic sequence of single notes alternating between two panels. For example, Horatio ESP features many 16th note drills.

Footswitch

A pattern in which two notes on the same panel, typically Up or Down, are intended to be hit with alternating feet rather than the same foot twice.

Footswitches can be difficult to distinguish from short jacks. In general, if footswitching a repeated note avoids a double-step in the near future, it's more likely to be the "intended" technique.

Step-jumps

Also known as: Jump-steps

A pattern in which jumps and single notes are interwoven such that every other note is a jump. Typically, the single notes that separate the jumps will be on the same panel as one or both of the surrounding jumps' panels. For example, Sumidagawa CSP makes heavy use of step-jumps during the chorus.

Stream

Also known as: Run

A pattern characterized by a monotonic sequence of single notes on different panels. For example, Healing Vision ~angelic mix~ ESP ends with a long stream of 8th notes, and Nageki no ki ESP has a long 16th note stream towards the end.

Bracket

Also known as: Heel-toe

A gameplay technique where the player hits a corner jump using one foot, hitting one panel with their heel and the other with their toes. The name "bracket" refers to the metal brackets that secure the panels in place at the corners.

Rhythm

Quantization

Also known as: Division, Note color

In dance games, the quantization of a note is a measure of how finely a measure of the song must be divided in order for the note's timing to coincide with one of these subdivisions. DDR and many other other dance games assign each note's color according to its quantization. Here are the relevant subdivisions and their colors when using the "NOTE" Arrow Color option:

  • 4th (quarter) notes: Red
  • 8th notes: Blue
  • 16th notes: Yellow
  • All other quantizations (12th, 24th, 32nd...): Green

Measure

Four beats of a song.

When guide lines are enabled, measures are denoted by the brighter scrolling lines.

Beat

The most commonly understood subdivision of a song according to its tempo, which is accordingly measured in beats per minute (BPM). One beat is equivalent to a quarter note.

When guide lines are enabled, each line denotes one beat of the song.

Scores

Judgement

An indicator of how precisely the player hit a note, with respect to timing.

Every judgement has an associated timing window that determines how early or late a note may be hit, as well as a score calculation that depends on the chart. Judgements with smaller timing windows take precedence over those with larger timing windows, and yield higher scores. After each stage, the players can review how many times they received each judgement on the results screen. The judgements are Marvelous, Perfect, Great, Good, O.K., and Miss / N.G.

Marvelous

Also known as: Marvs (slang)

The best note judgement, above Perfect.

The timing window for the Marvelous judgement is believed to be 16.666… ms; the score it yields is the maximum possible for each note in the chart.

Trivia

The Marvelous judgement was introduced in DanceDanceRevolution EXTREME, but only in courses. It was introduced to normal gameplay in DDR SuperNOVA2. Prior to its introduction, Perfect was the best note judgement - hence the peculiar naming convention.

The aforementioned "maximum possible" score for each note is determined by dividing the maximum total score of 1,000,000 by the number of scored judgements (notes + held freeze notes + dodged shock arrows) for that chart. If the resulting number isn't a multiple of 10 (which it usually won't be), the maximum score will actually fluctuate on a note-by-note basis between the surrounding multiples of 10, such that the total adds up to exactly 1,000,000.

Perfect

Also known as: Perfs (slang)

The second-best note judgement, below Marvelous and above Great.

The timing window for the Perfect judgement is believed to be 33.333… ms; the score it yields is the same as a Marvelous, minus 10.

Great

The third-best note judgement, below Perfect and above Good.

The timing window for the Great judgement is believed to be about 92 ms; the score it yields is 60% of a Perfect.

Good

The fourth-best note judgement, below Great.

The timing window for the Good judgement is believed to be about 142 ms; the score it yields 20% of a Perfect.

O.K.

Also known as: OK

A pseudo-judgement obtained by holding a freeze note to its end or avoiding a shock arrow.

The score gained from each OK is the same as Marvelous.

N.G.

Also known as: NG, No Good

A pseudo-judgement obtained by dropping a freeze note or triggering a shock arrow.

During gameplay, the judgement is displayed as "N.G.", but on the results screen it is counted as a miss, and all game mechanics influenced by misses are also influenced by N.G. judgements.

N.G. judgements do not increase or decrease the player's score.

Miss

Failing to hit an arrow within the widest timing window (namely Good) incurs a Miss. This resets the player's combo back to zero and decreases the life gauge (unless it is already empty).

Misses do not increase or decrease the player's score.

Pad miss

Also known as: Pad s**t (slang)

Informal term for a miss judgement that the player believes the game registered erroneously. The panels, like any piece of hardware, are not perfect and can malfunction or require different pressure compared to other panels, especially if poorly maintained.

MA (Marvelous Attack)

A player or score's proportion of Marvelous judgements compared to all other judgements, typically quantified in vague terms rather than a specific ratio (e.g. "really good MA").

Trivia

In the dance game series In The Groove, the equivalent term is "FA", short for "Fantastic Attack".

Clear

Also known as: Pass

Completing a stage without failing due to the life gauge depleting. Clears are assigned a letter grade from D to AAA and are eligible for various lamps contingent on modifiers and full combo-based clear levels.

Assist clear

Completing a stage without failing, but with the use of an option that removes notes or other scoring elements from gameplay. Using any of the non-default choices under the "Cut", "Freeze Arrow", or "Jumps" options will count as an assist clear for the purpose of lamps.

Fail

Also known as: Game over

Ending a stage with a depleted life gauge. Fails are assigned a letter grade of E, although the score the player obtained prior to failing is equally valid as a score obtained by clearing the stage.

Score

Also known as: Money score

A numeric indicator of a player's accuracy & timing precision on a given stage, ranging from 0 to 1,000,000. The score is a cumulative measure of the scores corresponding to the judgements they received on each note (and freeze note and shock arrow). Sometimes called "money score" to differentiate from EX score.

"Score" can also refer to the more general results of a stage, without strictly meaning the numeric score.

EX score

Also known as: EX points, EX

An alternative scoring method where judgements are assigned the following weights:

EX score is displayed on the results screen below the judgement counts. In Event Mode, the normal score and EX score displays may be swapped.

Trivia

This scoring method is favored in tournaments over money score because it assigns comparable weights to Perfects and Greats, unlike the standard scoring system where, for example, nearly any reasonable PFC would beat a near-MFC missed by only one great.

Grade

Also known as: Letter grade, Rank

A letter-based rank assigned to a player's performance on a stage, based on their score and whether they cleared or failed the stage. Here are the grades and their conditions:

  • AAA: Clear with a score of 990,000 or higher.
  • AA+: Clear with a score between 950,000 (inclusive) and 990,000 (exclusive).
  • AA: Clear with a score between 900,000 (inclusive) and 950,000 (exclusive).
  • AA-: Clear with a score between 890,000 (inclusive) and 900,000 (exclusive).
  • A+: Clear with a score between 850,000 (inclusive) and 890,000 (exclusive).
  • A: Clear with a score between 800,000 (inclusive) and 850,000 (exclusive).
  • A-: Clear with a score between 790,000 (inclusive) and 800,000 (exclusive).
  • B+: Clear with a score between 750,000 (inclusive) and 790,000 (exclusive).
  • B: Clear with a score between 700,000 (inclusive) and 750,000 (exclusive).
  • B-: Clear with a score between 690,000 (inclusive) and 700,000 (exclusive).
  • C+: Clear with a score between 650,000 (inclusive) and 690,000 (exclusive).
  • C: Clear with a score between 600,000 (inclusive) and 650,000 (exclusive).
  • C-: Clear with a score between 590,000 (inclusive) and 600,000 (exclusive).
  • D+: Clear with a score between 550,000 (inclusive) and 590,000 (exclusive).
  • D: Clear with a score below 550,000.
  • E: Fail with any score.

Trivia

Prior to DanceDanceRevolution SuperNOVA2, "AAA" was synonymous with PFC, as the Marvelous judgement had not been introduced yet. The ensuing change in semantics was met with… mixed responses from the DDR community at the time.

Sightread

Informal term for a score obtained on a player's first time seeing the chart, with no prior attempts and no knowledge of the chart beforehand.

If the player has seen the chart but hasn't attempted it yet, their first score would be better described by "first try" or "first attempt".