?

Log in

No account? Create an account

arhyalon

Previous Entry Share Next Entry
08:21 pm: Thou Hast Turned My Dancing Into Mourning -- First encounters with Dance Dance Revolution

We went to visit our in-laws today, and the boys wanted to play X-Men on the X-Box. However, neither they nor John have any experience with this, so even the easiest villains were too difficult for them. So, Abe, our oldest nephew (a Junior in high school) set the game so that they could fight each other. 

I don't know how the first few games went, but in the last game John played Iron Man, Juss played Iceman, and Orville -- who was sick of losing -- played the Juggernaut (a villain, for those who are not X-Men initiates). Orville won, and Juss was devastated. John, watching Orville vaunt and Juss pout, observed that it was too bad that they did not have a game that did not require someone to win. 

So, Abe brought out DDRMax2. 

Well, I had heard of Dance Dance Revolution with the hearing of the ear, but now I saw it with the seeing of the eye, and felt it with the tapping of the foot. 

Again, for the uninitiate, Dance Dance Revolution is a game where you have a mat with arrows on it and you jump around on the mat, tapping the arrows with your feet in response to arrows that appear on the screen. It's supposed to be like dancing, and maybe it is at higher speeds, but at the lower-speed its kind of like a mix between dancing and high speed hopscotch. 

Now, back when I was young, I was quite good at watching someone dance and following their style and move...but that was with a live person. This required that you move your foot in response to arrows and a human figure on a screen -- not something I was visually used to making sense of (I play very, very, very few video games.) So, it was kind of like dancing while someone shouts instructions in a language you don't really know. 

"Droit, droit!" 
"Is that right or left?" 

I tried it a few times, with Juss on the other mat. I got a bit better as I went. After four tries, I could began to understand what I was looking at enough to kind of tell what was coming: I look at the human figure, I check to see what arrows are heading up, I prepare to jump when the figure jumps in the direction that the arrows indicated (still a bit confused by the up and down arrows, though.) 

I scored higher on some. Juss scored higher on others.

"Don't try the red and purple ones," Abe had warned, "They're harder."

The last time, I decided to try a purple on, thinking that if it moved a bit faster, it might feel more like dancing and less like hopscotch. Juss bailed out, so Abe stood up to take his place.

The purple song turned out to be a mistake. The screen was entirely different...just arrows now, with slightly different symbols. It was like trying to dance while someone shouted at you in a completely different language. 

When we were done, the screen showed our score:

Abe: 45,886,792 
Me:                455

It was sooooo pathetic. ;-)



Comments

From:tapinger
Date:November 26th, 2007 02:34 am (UTC)
(Link)
I didn't think the human figures had anything to do with what you're actually supposed to do; I usually turn them off because I find them distracting. I guess you live and learn.

There is a computer clone called StepMania that (1) lets you create your own steps for your own songs and (2) tends to be even more insane than DDR, which is actually (usually) beatable with some practice.

For some reason, DDR also has some options where you can turn off the arrows completely or have them fade in or out halfway up the screen, none of which helps my accuracy. :)
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:November 26th, 2007 03:42 am (UTC)
(Link)
While I will not make any claims about whether I could be any good at this, I can say with confidence that if I had a week or so to play with it, I could improve dramatically upon my current performance. Just learning the 'language' of the arrows (which one on the screen went with which foot motion) would help a lot.

But it was funnier this way.
From:tapinger
Date:November 26th, 2007 12:47 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Well, the basic idea is that you press the matching arrow(s) on the pad when they reach the white flashing outlines at the top of the screen. So if a left-pointing arrow on the screen reaches the top, you press the left-pointing arrow on the pad (which also happens to be the one on the left side of the pad if you have it oriented the right way).

Then they try to get you to do more advanced patterns by turning around and changing your orientation on the pad, which probably helps, but I'm no good at it.

What my brothers and sisters tended to do when they began was always return their feet to the center of the pad, which isn't necessary and is often wasted motion; hitting arrows unnecessarily doesn't hurt you, only missing them does (or hitting them slightly ahead or behind time).
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:November 26th, 2007 01:11 pm (UTC)
(Link)
>always return their feet to the center of the pad
Yes, I could see that this was not the best strategy...but to keep my feet in motion I needed the arrows to be moving faster, otherwise there seemed to be a lag time. That's why I tried the purple song. ;-)

I'm pretty sure that not returning to center would be the better strategy.
[User Picture]
From:kokorognosis
Date:November 26th, 2007 04:30 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Yeah. Leave your feet on the last button you stomped on. The tricks with dancing games are A), Practice, it'll take your body a few goes to learn the patterns, and B) Practice, to build endurance. Some of those songs are... nightmarish arrow-rains.
[User Picture]
From:headnoises
Date:November 26th, 2007 03:55 am (UTC)

DDR....

(Link)
I rather like some of their songs, when I can block out that there are humans watching me.

Only done it in arcades. *Grin*
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:November 26th, 2007 01:12 pm (UTC)

Re: DDR....

(Link)
>I can block out that there are humans watching me

Thinks to sell before reading the next line about the arcades: "Gee, must be the cat in the picture talking!"
[User Picture]
From:headnoises
Date:November 26th, 2007 10:27 pm (UTC)

Re: DDR....

(Link)
Hehe.
Powered by LiveJournal.com