KEYBOARDMANIA Information

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KEYBOARDMANIA Series

A KEYBOARDMANIA cabinet.

KEYBOARDMANIA (キーボードマニア, often shortened to KBM) is the seventh BEMANI series to be released in Japan. The game can be played by one or two players. Following the popularity of the GuitarFreaks & DrumMania series, KEYBOARDMANIA, as its name suggests, allows players to use a 2 octave, 24 key Yamaha keyboard and a pitch wheel. Although it only lasted for three arcade releases, the KEYBOARDMANIA series was infamous for its difficulty, with beginners being overwhelmed by its controller.

The final arcade release, KEYBOARDMANIA 3rdMIX, was also compatible for session mode with GuitarFreaks & DrumMania, named MultiSession GDK, allowing players linked play between the three games with a short shared songlist.

In Korea, the KEYBOARDMANIA series was renamed to KEYBOARDHEAVEN.

Games

Arcade Releases

Consumer Software

PlayStation 2

PC

Game Modes

LIGHT (introduced in 2ndMIX)

The easiest mode available in the game, it uses half octave (12 keys).

LIGHT+ (known as NORMAL in the original KEYBOARDMANIA)

Regular play mode, it uses 24 keys.

REAL

A higher difficulty which follows the actual songs closer, it uses 24 keys.

FREE MODE

A practice mode without game over.

PRESSURE (introduced in 2ndMIX)

An expert mode, featuring courses with fixed set of songs. The groove gauge starts at 100%, but it only decreases, and it does not recover at all.

Gameplay

Not unlike the beatmania series, there are 24 columns on the screen, corresponding to each of the keys (48 columns if playing in Double). While playing, small horizontal notes fall straight through each of these columns, and the player must press the right key when the note touches the red line at the bottom of the column, no sooner and no later. KEYBOARDMANIA also has Long Notes, which are shown as a white/red beam (depending on the column where it appears: white for white notes, red for black notes) that must be kept pressed during its duration. Once a Long Note is pressed, it will reveal its real length. The pitch wheel also has its own lane, with its own notes not unlike scratches in beatmania (however, wheel notes mandate a direction to be hit).

As KEYBOARDMANIA is a keysounded game, each key press will play a sound which complements the song. Each hit can be judged as GREAT, GOOD, or MISS (Long Notes are judged at the start and end of the note).

Scoring

KEYBOARDMANIA features a life bar (often referred to as the "groove gauge"), which increases moderately by GREATs, slightly by GOODs, and depletes somewhat by MISSes; the emphasis is clearly on missing as few notes as possible. To pass a song, the life bar has to be at 70% (50% in DOUBLE) or above at the end of a song, or to never reach 0% at any point of the song.

Game Options

MIRROR

Flips the note layout so, for example, all notes that would normally correspond to the extreme left-hand key now correspond to the extreme right-hand key, and so forth.

HI-SPEED

Increases the scroll rate of the note chart, from 1x (default) to 4x.

DOUBLE

Allows one player to use both keyboards, with each song having different charts using up to all 48 keys. DOUBLE cannot be used in LIGHT mode.

HIDDEN (introduced in 2ndMIX)

Notes are only visible in the upper half of the screen.

ANOTHER

Allows players to access a special, harder chart for select songs.

KEYBOARDMANIA Resources

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