I've long promised that I would add DDR videos to this website if given the chance. With the purchase of a new and improved digital camera in July 2007, that promise became a reality. At the moment I have relatively few videos to share, but I hope to improve on that in the coming months. Since I am also in the process of learning Doubles Mode, expect to see a number of Doubles videos showing up here. I think the Doubles videos look cooler anyway.
Due to the size of video files, these movies are hosted at youtube.com.
To test out my camera, I first recorded myself playing the Challenge steps to V, which resulted in a fine performance with 5 Greats. To my great surprise, when I tried Colors Challenge next, I aced a perfect "AAA"! I don't have a whole lot of comments to add because this performance is practically flawless; listen carefully and you'll see how the steps beat a counter-melody to the vocals. (It's one of Konami's best stepcharts.) I nearly screwed up the last sixteenth note grouping, rushing it in excitement, but just managed to avoid what would have been a killer Great. You can also feel free to laugh at me as I point at the screen in joy and then zoom in waaaay too far with the camera. I would get better with more practice.
The fact that this video was totally unplanned is what makes it so sweet. A 9-footer "AAA" captured on film, you gotta love it!AAA - True Love (Expert)
I felt as though I needed another Singles "AAA" video, so I went back to a favorite song and did True Love again. Fortunately it only took about a half dozen tries, which is relatively easy as these things go. I particularly like the way that the steps on this song beat a counter-melody to the lyrics in the background. Starting at 1:05 on the video you get the spin section, which I awkwardly double-step instead of doing it properly. (Look closely and you'll see it; every pattern leads with the left foot in the first half, then right foot in the second.) This wouldn't work on a faster song, but I'm not arguing with success! There's also the stop at 1:25 which can be a little tricky. All in all, while it's not a terribly difficult song, it is fun to play. A decent video, I think.AAA - Sweet Sweet Magic (Heavy)
Here we go with a good one. Sweet Sweet Magic is one of my favorites; I did it for "AAA" #150 and wanted to record it on video since it's a very difficult song that I play well. You'll note immediately that I say "I've GOT this one!" on the recording; this was coming on the heels of a 1 Great performance, and I wasn't really thinking about what I was saying. Heh. The steps to this song are both fast and chaotic, mixing up just about everything: step-jumps (0:28), difficult sixteenth note timings (0:37), gallops (0:52), and even a stop in the music (1:15). The steps at 1:03 are easily the most difficult in the piece to pull off correctly. You probably can't see the arrows on the screen, but try listening to the sound of my feet - it's tough! Video came out looking quite well, I was definitely pleased.AAA - Waka Laka (Heavy)
I had been close on Waka Laka several times before, and so I decided to make a run at this song and record the effort. Waka Laka is famous in the DDR community for its ridiculous number of jumps; pretty much every single step pattern requires the player to pull off step-jumps by inserting doubled notes into the eighth note streams. Because of the visual nature of the song, I pulled the camera back to make viewing my movements easier. (The tradeoff is that the arrows on the screen are now almost invisible...)
The doubled notes begin almost immediately at 0:22 on the clock, and run throughout the rest of the piece. If you look closely, you'll see that the little runs mostly end with those jumps; for example, at 0:24 my left foot has to fly from the down arrow to the up arrow without breaking the timing of the notes. Keeping time with all these doubled steps is why "AAA"ing this song is so difficult. Of course the trademark section of the song runs from 1:01 to 1:10, right where the chorus sings "It's Waka Laka Time!" Every fourth step in this section is doubled, so you have a pattern of single-single-single-DOUBLE-single-single-single-DOUBLE that continues for a while. It's... not easy! After that, the rest of the song is more step-jumps to the end. This was "AAA" #225 overall for me.AAA - Dead End (Heavy)
I like Dead End because it's simple and to the point: lots of lengthy note streams at a fast speed. Nothing too complicated. The one area that usually gave me trouble was at the 0:53 mark, where the song goes into a syncopated pattern. I initially thought it was a group of uneven sixteenth notes, but it's actually straight triplets. Listen to the sound of my feet doing the steps and you'll see what I mean (it sounds... a little strange). As far as video notes, I put the camera on the other side of the screen for novelty's sake. Got this "AAA" on the very first attempt too, amazingly!AAA - Drop Out (Heavy)
Probably the hardest song on which I've recorded a "AAA", certainly on video. Drop Out is blindingly fast (260 beats per minute), and has a LOT of notes. I am actually playing this on 1.5x instead of my usual 2x or 3x, for the curious. It starts out innocently enough, but at the 0:31 mark the double steps appear and they keep coming for quite some time! Just getting to all the notes is difficult enough, much less stepping them perfectly in time without speeding up or slowing down. The camera actually does a good job of capturing my legs here as they fly around the pad. And the second group of doubled steps is actually worse than the first!
After that, there are some pretty easy quarter note streams for a while that don't pose too great of a challenge. At 1:27 it gets hard again, as the song starts throwing tons of eighth-eighth-quarter groups of three at the player. There are three groups at 1:32 on the song that alternate left and right off of the down arrow; I tried to turn here, but actually ended up double-stepping instead. Heh. If you look closely, you'll see some truly awkward footwork. Then at 1:34 is the big ending "hell run" of continuous eigths, although it's not *quite* as hard as it looks. The toughest part is that the very first set of four notes requires the player to reverse feet from the previous steps, thus having to lead with the LEFT foot and not the right one. (I worked this out through some extensive practice in Training Mode.) After that, it's some more doubled steps and then smooth sailing to the end. Yay! The video for this one came out great too.
This is the first Doubles "AAA" I captured on the camera (my fourth Doubles "AAA" overall). The biggest problem is that I put the camera directly behind the television, in a spot where my body blocks most of the view. Even worse, I was using a background that was much too bright, making it all but impossible to view the notes on screen. Argh. After going to all the trouble of recording this I wasn't about to delete this, but I could (and would) do better in future efforts. Hopefully it's still worth watching...Doubles AAA - Come Clean (Expert)
This other video, of the song "Come Clean", I think I managed to get a much better setup featuring both the screen and a clear view of the two pads. If I seem a little tired in the video, it's because this was about my 20th attempt at getting the song perfect! (I was off by a single step roughly four or five times.) This song is quite slow, so the difficulty comes from the large number of double steps (hitting two arrows together at the same time) thrown in. There's a good example of this around 0:29 and again at 1:05, where I have to jump sideways from the one pad to the other. Fun stuff!
The closest I come to screwing up is at 1:13 on the clock; I'm doing an eighth note patten and have to reach way out to hit the left down arrow. When I froze the video here, I realized that I just BARELY grazed the corner of the arrow with my foot. But it counted, and that's what mattered! Overall, I was extremely pleased with the way this one came out. Almost no one seems to play Doubles in DDR anymore, sadly, so hopefully these are worth posting. After all, Doubles play looks pretty cool, doesn't it?Doubles AAA - Heaven is a Place on Earth (Challenge)
This is my best Doubles "AAA" to date; it's listed as a 9-footer, although definitely easier than that. While I still need a lot of practice at Doubles Mode, it's fun for me to watch these videos and see myself getting better. The syncopation part starting at 0:54 is great fun, especially the moonwalk backwards across the pads during that stretch (0:57). I reverse feet at 1:03 on the clock to do a slightly more difficult section; it looks awkward, but seemed to work for me.
The sixteenth section starting at 1:07 looks considerably harder than it actually is, because there's no crossing over steps or walking sideways across the pads required. The closest I come to messing up is at 1:29, where I DO have to walk sideways to the right. By all rights I should miss the L2 and U2 arrows, but somehow manage to clip the edges of them, then I have to delay landing the final jump slightly because I'm getting ahead of the beat! It looks very awkward on the video, and it was in practice too. After that, everything was pretty smooth sailing to the end. The involuntary fist pump at the end still amuses me - you'd be excited too if this was the 20th time you tried to get the perfect run! This and the Singles video of Colors Challenge are probably my favorites so far.