PNM Glossary

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A list of terms/modes in pop'n music. English name listed to the left, with the Japanese name to the right if applicable.

5 Button
First Game: pop'n music 5
The lowest rated difficulty level in pop'n music. It uses the center 5 buttons exclusively, with notecounts typically around 100-400 notes. 5 Button was removed in pop'n music Sunny Park, replaced by EASY. Most songs from pop'n music 5 through pop'n music 20 fantasia had a 5 Button chart.
BAD
First Game: pop'n music
A note either hit too late, or not at all. Hitting notes when you're not supposed to can also get you BADs. You get no points for BADs.
BATTLE
First Game: pop'n music 6
A mode where you and one other person play simplified charts of only three buttons each (the white, green, and yellow buttons on both sides of the controller), with the goal being to get the most points across three stages. Score enough points and you can unleash various OJAMAs at certain levels, with 4/MAX being the highest. Songs originally only had one set of BATTLE charts, but beginning with pop'n music 8, HYPER BATTLE charts were added. (Note that not all pop'n music songs, even in the latest games, have HYPER BATTLE charts.) This mode was not in pop'n music 6 CS, but it was present on all the PlayStation2 installments save pop'n music Best Hits!. pop'n music 7 CS and pop'n music portable have only one set of BATTLE charts available. BATTLE charts do not appear in pop'n music portable 2, the LONG songs in pop'n music 9, or the URA songs in pop'n music 11.
CHALLENGE MODE
First Game: pop'n music 5
An arcade mode where you can gather points determined by the difficulty level of the song (i.e. a level 13 song cleared will earn you 13 points), as well as using mods called OJAMAs. Netting points was also the only way in the earlier pop'n music arcade games with CHALLENGE MODE that let you play EX charts (via EXtra Stage). From pop'n musics 5 through 7, OJAMAs had to be set before you chose a song. (A maximum of two can be set.) Starting with pop'n music 8, though, OJAMAs are set after choosing a song. (This was also the first game to let you set a permanent OJAMA through the song, worth 1.5 times the usual amount.) In some (earlier) games, getting a certain amount of points unlocks the EXtra Stage or a special pic, though never both in the same round.
CHO CHALLENGE (超CHALLENGEモード)
First Game: pop'n music 13 カーニバル
An arcade mode that plays similar to CHALLENGE MODE, but has COOLs on the entire game. Certain OJAMAs can only be used in this mode, and the point requirements for an EXtra Stage are much, much higher. This mode was removed in pop'n music 20 fantasia when COOLs were added to the core game across all modes except BATTLE MODE and EASY MODE.
Combo
First Game: pop'n music 3
How many GOODs/GREATs/COOLs you have going before you get a BAD or miss a note. From pop'n music 3 through 6, the combo was displayed in the top center of the screen. Starting with pop'n music 7, though, they are directly displayed above the border line of the individual note hit. And starting with pop'n music 9, the combo slowly fades out after a note is hit.
COOL
First Game: pop'n music 6
A note that registers more accurate than a GREAT. First introduced in courses, but later spun off into its own mode in pop'n music 13 カーニバル called "超CHALLENGEモード". COOLs can also be played in FREE MODE in pop'n music 14 FEVER! CS; scores with/without COOLs are stored separately. (pop'n music 13 カーニバル CS lets you play with COOLs on in Free Mode, but doesn't display the scores in Records.) In pop'n music portable, its sequel, and pop'n music 20 fantasia onwards, COOLs are always on.
COURSE MODE
First Game: pop'n music 6
Courses are an arcade mode of play where you play four predetermined songs back to back on a single gauge. The gauge does not go up during play. An empty gauge results in your immediate disqualification, though you can still enter your name if you got a high enough score on the rankings. In the pop'n music CS games 6 through 8, certain songs can only be played in GAME/FREE Mode by playing them in courses. Though dropped in pop'n music 18 せんごく列伝, courses were revived years later in pop'n music ラピストリア. They did not, however, return again in pop'n music éclale.
Prior to courses, there was a mode in pop'n music 3 which allowed you to play through three songs back-to-back with HYPER notecharts. This mode was never used again due to HYPER charts being added to the core game the following installment.
EASY
First Game: pop'n music Sunny Park
A new difficulty level introduced in pop'n music Sunny Park. This mode replaces the old 5 Button difficulty level and features simple charts that use 3-9 buttons. Not every song has an EASY chart, though every song introduced from pop'n music ラピストリア onward has one.
EXCITE
First Game: pop'n music
An early arcade mode where a CPU rival would throw at you certain mods/distractions throughout the song. EXCITE was removed in pop'n music 5, though some of the mods live on as OJAMAs in CHALLENGE MODE.
EXtra (Stage)
First Game: pop'n music 5
EX is the name given to the fourth (and highest) difficulty level in the game, typically highlighted in red on the music select screen. EX(tra) stage is rewarded for passing three songs without fail & ranking a certain amount of points up in CHALLENGE MODE. Songs in this category tend to be much harder than their HYPER counterparts, ranging from Levels 29 to 50 (maximum). This mode was originally named because EX charts could only be played through EXtra Stage. Starting with pop'n music 8, EX charts can be played in the arcade on any level after being unlocked.
Note that until pop'n music 17 THE MOVIE, not every song introduced had an EX chart. Also, over the years older pop'n songs prior to the EX chart's introduction have been given EX charts.
From pop'n music ラピストリア onwards, EXtra STAGE is PASELI-only. You need to clear five songs, each spelling a letter in the word EXTRA, to unlock it at the end of your round of play
Also, up until pop'n music 10 CS, all EX charts had to be unlocked one by one in CHALLENGE MODE in the CS games. From 10 CS onwards, though, they're all unlocked after you complete the unlocking system of the respective CS game. (Certain EX charts unlock after certain upgrades are reached in the arcade games as well.)
FREE MODE
First Game: pop'n music CS
A console-only mode where you can play any song on any difficulty level without stage number restrictions. Up until pop'n music 9 CS, songs had to be played in ARCADE MODE before being playable in FREE MODE (except for a single default beginner song that varied in each game).
FULL COMBO
First Game: n/a
Every note hit in a song was either a GOOD, GREAT, or (depending on the mode) COOL, with no additional missed notes. From pop'n music 13 カーニバル through 19 TUNE STREET, a message displaying "NO BAD!" appears at the end of a song for those who obtain a full combo. (Beginning with pop'n music 20 fantasia, it just says "FULL COMBO" like in beatmania IIDX.) In addition, in most of the later AC/CS games, a little mark with two crowns/onions/whatever will be displayed next to the song with a FULL COMBO.
GOOD
First Game: pop'n music
A note that barely hits the lane. Prior to pop'n music ラピストリア, a GOOD was only worth 20% the amount a GREAT is without COOLs on, and only 1/10 the amount of a COOL with COOLs on. Currently, they're worth 40% the amount of a COOL.
GREAT
First Game: pop'n music
You hit the note perfectly/near perfectly, resulting in 100% possible score for that note without COOLs, and 50% with them on. As of pop'n music ラピストリア, GREATs are worth 70% the amount of a COOL.
HELL
First Game: pop'n music 6
The name of a course in pop'n music (usually) containing the four hardest new songs in the game. It is often one of the final unlocks in any given pop'n music game. Since pop'n music 8, HELL courses have had exclusively EX charts in them. It is also the name of an OJAMA that punishes you severely for missing a note when activated. Courses, including HELL, were removed in pop'n music 18 せんごく列伝, but were revived in pop'n music ラピストリア.
HI-SPEED
First Game: pop'n music 2.
The rate a song's notes scroll - the higher the mod, the faster they descend. Originally only double speed was available, but speed mods were upgraded in pop'n music 6 with 3X and 4X, and in pop'n music 9 with the hidden 6X. (5X was eventually introduced in pop'n music 11, where it was also hidden. In addition, pop'n music 9 CS had 8X, the only game to ever have that speed mod.) Starting with pop'n music 15 ADVENTURE, speed mods also come in increments of 0.5 up to 6X. In pop'n music ラピストリア, speed could be in increments of as little as 0.1, and now go up to HI-SPEED 10.
Note that OJAMAs in CHALLENGE MODE set to a certain speed mod are compounded into the speed mod. For example, using a 2X OJAMA and turning on HI-SPEED 3 will result in a scrolling rate of 6X. Be careful!
HYPER
First Game: pop'n music CS
A level of difficulty higher than NORMAL, but less than EX. They are highlighted in yellow on most games' music select screens. Songs in this level range between 10 to the high 30's. (The highest to date is Concertare, a 48.) Originally a CS exclusive level of play, HYPER charts weren't introduced in the arcade until pop'n music 3, and even then they were only playable in HYPER mode (a course consisting of HYPER-only notecharts). HYPER notecharts became available for normal arcade play in pop'n music 4. Since pop'n music 6, all new AC/CS songs (except for a few licenses in pop'n music 10) have had HYPER charts.
Over the years some older songs have been given HYPER charts as well.
LONG songs
First Game: pop'n music 9
Longer versions of pre-existing pop'n music songs, ranging from 3 to 5 minutes long. Due to their length, a LONG song takes up two stages, except for the long version of Homesick Pt.2&3. All other LONG songs were removed in pop'n music 16 PARTY♪. LONG songs do not have BATTLE charts.
Max Combo
First Game: pop'n music 3
The longest line of COOLs/GREATs/GOODs in a song before you break your combo with a MISS or BAD.
Note that up to pop'n music 16 PARTY♪, the highest Max Combo you can gain is the total notes of the minus 1. Since pop'n music 17 THE MOVIE, though, this has been dropped, and the highest max combo you can get in the song is the exact amount of notes in a song.
Mini
A term used by players for the small pop'n music controllers (sometimes derogatorily) for the PS/DC/PS2 games, originally black. The controller was completely redesigned (and re-colored white) for the release of pop'n music 10 CS. Minis are also fully compatible with the beatmania IIDX CS games, even the US version; the two farthest left buttons are used for the turntable (the top being used for upwards, and the bottom for downwards).
NAVIGATE MODE
First Game: pop'n music 20 fantasia
NAVIGATE MODE is a recently introduced mode in the pop'n music arcade games that lets you create a course based on a list of preferences (such as artist, level, genre and the mood of the song).
Net Taisen Mode (NET対戦)
First Game: pop'n music 12 いろは
An arcade mode where you play against two other players online, challenging each other for the highest scores in a song. Certain OJAMAs can be unlocked for play in this mode depending on your performance. In the PlayStation 2 installments, TAISEN MODE is only playable against two CPU opponents, as the PlayStation 2 pop'n music games cannot go online.
NORMAL
First Game: pop'n music
Occasionally known as 9-Button / 9-Line / 9KEY, it is the lowest level default chart that uses all 9 buttons on the controller. It is usually highlighted in green in the games' song select screens. Difficulty levels range from 9 (Monde des songe) up to 36 (夜間行). All songs in pop'n music have a NORMAL chart.
PARTY
First Game: pop'n music
An arcade mode in which certain mods would be forced upon you if you hit one in a song. This mode was removed in pop'n music 6.
PERFECT(!)
First Game: n/a
Every note hit was a GREAT, earning you a perfect score of 100,000 (or GREAT and COOL if COOLs are on). Starting with pop'n music 13 カーニバル, a message displaying "PERFECT!!" appears for those who do this at the end of a song, along with the result screen announcer congratulating you by saying, "Marvelous!" In addition, in most of the later AC/CS games, a little mark with three crowns/onions/whatever will be displayed next to a song with a FULL COMBO.
pop-kun
First Game: pop'n music
The official name of the multi-colored notes that drop from above in a song.
URA
First Game: pop'n music 11
Exclusive to pop'n music 11, URA songs are old pop'n music songs with brand-new charts and color palettes for the characters in the songs. Most of them are more difficult, but a few songs are slightly easier due to more modern flowing charts. URA songs do not have BATTLE charts.
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