My goal had been to achieve 100 "AAA"s across various different DDR home mixes, one which I achieved in December of 2005. Once I finished that goal (which had taken about four months of hard playing), I took a break from DDR and spent my dancing game time on the console version of In The Groove (ITG) instead. Since I had more or less conquered all the DDR songs on my home mixes, there wasn't a whole lot of reason to continue playing. However, with the release of DDR SuperNOVA for the PS2 in September 2006, a whole new list of songs became available, and so I returned back to DDR for another spin. I quickly found that the ability to turn on "Marvelous" timing in SuperNOVA for the first time, coupled with a larger screen resolution to be able to see more of the notes at once, meant that I would be able to knock out a VERY large number of "AAA"s on the new mix. As a result, this page is dominated by SuperNOVA "AAA"s, and concludes with more from DDR Extreme as I went back and caught up on previously missed songs while pursuing a new goal of 200 "AAA"s overall.
Once again, for the quick and dirty list of all my personal "AAA"s, click here.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#101||Jet World||Heavy||325||11||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Jet World is a very popular song from DDR Extreme, featuring a western cowboy theme of sorts. Personally it's not my favorite song, but I've seen it picked a lot at arcades. I remember getting this one right after I picked up Paranoia for "AAA" #100, and then being disappointed that I couldn't post it on my website without creating a whole new page (which one extra song didn't merit). A nice one to have.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#102||Sana Morette Ne Ente||Heavy||294||-||50,000,000||DDRMax USA|
Now this one is an old favorite from DDRMax, one of the songs that I played on Light while learning the game. Sana Morette (that's what the kanji in the picture stands for, although I don't know what it translates to) is a very slow samba piece with all sorts of crazy rhythms thrown in. Don't even try to sight-read this one! I had gotten 1 Great on this one a while back, and finally returned to polish it off later. This is one of the songs that I'll continue to play even after getting a "AAA" because it's so much fun.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#103||Can't Stop Fallin' In Love Super Euro Version||Heavy||227||61||-||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Here's the first SuperNOVA "AAA"; you can probably note the more colorful background in the picture. SuperNOVA also allows the player to turn on Marvelous timing in the main game mode (previous games only enabled it for Nonstop and Oni courses). I'll be talking a lot about the ratio of Marvelouses to Perfects in future songs, for example (it shows how close I was to being exactly on the beat). As far as this actual song... well, compared to Can't Stop Fallin in Love Speed Mix (my "AAA" #50), this one is a total joke. This was a sight-read "AAA": the first time I ever played the song, I got a "AAA". Not kidding. I should said in its defense, however, that it's a great song to break into Heavy difficulty for newcomers.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#104||Hit 'n' Slap||Heavy||155||37||-||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
As far as songs go, Hit 'n' Slap is about as easy a Heavy song as you'll ever find. Very slow (103bmp) tempo, nothing but quarters and eighths... it's not very hard. Turn on 3x and destroy it. This was also a sight-read "AAA", got it on my first play ever. For those with SuperNOVA looking to get their first Heavy "AAA", I'd say that this is probably the easiest one in the mix. Go for it!
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#105||rainbow rainbow||Heavy||239||68||12||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This is the first of many songs from the "Happy Hardcore" genre featured in SuperNOVA (that is, fast and happy songs with lots of steps). At 171bpm, it's on the quick side, but features nothing but quarters and eighths in medium-length streams. In other words, pretty much your standard 7-footer. I did this one a while ago, but I don't remember having much trouble getting the "AAA". Marvelous/Perfect ratio wasn't very good for me on this song, unfortunately...
Ahh, and now we start to get into the lousy American licensed songs (which SuperNOVA features in large quantities). Centerfold is probably better known as the song that goes "Nah Nah Na Na Na Nah" (etc.) which almost everyone has heard at some point. The steps follow the rhythm almost exactly, which makes for a couple of sixteenth note patterns, but nothing overly complicated. Took a surprising amount of time for me to get the "AAA" though - I must have been rusty.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#107||Girls Just Wanna Have Fun||Heavy||171||45||25||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
And things just keep getting better with "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun", a twenty-year old song with horrible steps. I have absolutely no clue why Konami would have put a song like this into SuperNOVA; it's one thing to add recognizable licensed songs in order to sell more copies of the game, but this song is old old OLD! At least the accompanying music video features hilarious footage of "Captain" Lou Albano (remember Mario from the Super Mario Brothers Super Show?)
Peace (and I have no clue what's up with those weird symbols following it) is another one of SuperNOVA's easiest songs, but at least it has some syncopation to it that spices things up. As far as the music goes, this is a J-Pop song done by BeForU, a group that's done many other songs for DDR. The video in the background of the group singing is a nice touch. At only 219 total steps, however, there's not a whole lot to say about this one.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#109||My Only Shining Star||Heavy||202||59||-||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This is a classic Naoki 7-footer (although it's listed as a 6-footer for no clear reason), very similar to others like Love Again Tonight, Firefly, Midnight Blaze, and so on. It's fun to play with a moderate tempo (155bpm), mostly eighth note streams with a little syncopation mixed in. Good stuff. With a little practice in Training Mode, this one was relatively simple to "AAA". Perfect count is still a little higher than I would have liked though (ideally, I'd be around 40 on this song).
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#110||Since U Been Gone||Heavy||194||57||17||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Since U Been Gone... yep. What you see is what you get. I'm sure everyone has heard this song before at some point. In the fine tradition of other easy 7-footer licensed songs, I had a ton of trouble getting the "AAA" for no apparent reason here. It was shades of Love At First Sight ("AAA" #35) from DDRMax2 all over again! Fortunately I was able to get it done in the end, although not with a very good number of Marvelouses.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#111||Baby's Tears||Heavy||230||50||1||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Baby's Tears is on the fast side at 180bpm, but I wouldn't say there's a whole lot going on here. The song is entirely made up of eighths and quarters, although there are a lot of steps (almost 300). Not a whole lot to say. For once, I even had a decent Marvelous attack, yay!
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#112||Video Killed the Radio Star||Heavy||161||39||-||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Another 80s cover, and another excruciatingly bad DDR song. There's really nothing to say here; moving on...
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#113||Turn On The Music||Heavy||198||65||10||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This song certainly likes its offbeats, doesn't it? Almost every rhythm begins off the beat; if you can figure that out, the rest of the song isn't too tricky. Otherwise, we have another 7-footer licensed song with repetitive steps. Yawn.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#114||Mr. Dabada||Heavy||189||47||4||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This is the DDR version of the popular song of the same name; it's a couple years old now, but at least it's not from the 80s! Mr. Dabada repeats the same step pattern over and over again, which is not surprising since the lyrics also repeat the same nonsensical words continuously. I can't remember having any problems with this one in getting the "AAA".
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#115||True Love||Heavy||271||82||1||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Now in contrast to the previous songs, this one is a keeper. True Love is a great 8-footer featuring some lengthy eighth note runs, spins, and even a brief stop in the music (much like Healing Vision Anglic Mix). Come to think of it, the spins in this song are reminiscent of Frozen Ray, although there aren't as many. Just from the number of steps in this song, you should be able to see that it's a cut above the previous couple songs in difficulty. Definitely a fun one here.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#116||Let's Dance||Heavy||179||62||7||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Ugh. This one is just plain awful. Another 80s song that just sounds terrible today - not to mention that it's painfully slow and has pathetic steps! Avoid at all costs. I got the "AAA" and ran. Marvelous count is very bad, but I didn't care - anything to be done and move on!
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#117||Put Your Faith In Me Saturday Night Mix||Heavy||210||42||12||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
If there's one thing the world didn't need, it was another remix of Put Your Faith In Me... This is a very simplistic 6-footer that took only a couple of tries to get the "AAA". On the plus side, however, my accuracy was excellent on the easy steps.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#118||Come Clean||Heavy||193||56||11||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Come Clean is a rarity, a licensed song with clever, interesting steps. There's a story behind my attempt to "AAA" this one however: I just could NOT get the darn thing! I got 1 Great no less than EIGHT different times on this song, leading to pictures like this one. Argh! However, with enough tries I did get it done eventually. Examples like this show why persistence is so important in going for "AAA"s - and should warn anyone that by no means is this whole thing easy!
Another very old licensed song that makes a questionable appearance in SuperNOVA. The end of the song adds some syncopation, but mostly it's just an issue of following the slow tempo and making sure not to rush ahead of the beat. Funkytown would certainly fall into the category of "songs I will NEVER play again" after getting a "AAA".
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#120||Ska Ska No. 3||Heavy||178||66||2||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Now this one is just crazy, and in a good way. I guess that you could call it a ska piece, but it feels more like an out-of-control polka song to me. While the music is blaring all sorts of crazy horn noises in the background, the steps have you hitting one note over and over again for most of the song, followed by CRAZY sets of doubles at the end of the song. Pure hilarity. You can bet I made good use of experience with songs like Waka Laka and Stoic on this one!
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#121||Do You Want To||Heavy||210||101||29||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This is a totally pedestrian 7-footer, distinguished only by my terrible Marvelous attack on this particular "AAA". I actually didn't remember anything about this song, and had to listen to it again in Training Mode just to recall how it went. About the only I comment I have is that it feels like it speeds up at the end of the song, but it doesn't. I messed up a number of times there before getting it right.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#122||Jerk It Out||Heavy||220||45||28||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Jerk It Out sounds just like the popular version of the song, and it repeats a very simple syncopated pattern over and over again in the steps. Another unremarkable 7-footer licensed song, ho hum.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#123||Balalaika, Carried With The Wind||Heavy||184||43||17||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
I believe that Balalaika is adapted from a Russian folk song, but whatever the case, this 6-footer is one of the easiest songs to "AAA" in SuperNOVA. The melody is pleasant to listen to, but the steps are just simple eighths and quarters. This would be another good song to do when moving up to Heavy for the first time.
This is an ear-screechingly bad remixed version of the classic song Shout. It's a bit tricky to do, with a tempo slowdown and decent amount of gallops, but overall not too bad. The music itself, however, is simply awful. Avoid at all costs when playing songs for fun.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#125||Happy Angel||Heavy||325||61||5||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Unlike Shout, Happy Angel is a fantastic song, and one I made a special effort to get for "AAA" #125. This is the very definition of Happy Hardcore, with a very fast and rather difficult melody spouting out cheerful thoughts for you to dance to. The intro and closing patterns are rather intricate, and the long streams throughout the middle of the song aren't a picnic either. In other words, I'd say this certainly qualifies as one of my better "AAA"s. And look at that awesome Marvelous attack, woohoo!
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#126||Heaven is a Place on Earth||Heavy||237||62||13||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This is definitely on the tough side for licensed songs; Heaven is a Place on Earth is a trance 8-footer with lots of chaos in the step patterns. It reminds me of ever snow in DDRMax2 and Memories in Extreme. I recall having to work this one quite a bit to get the "AAA". The irregularities in the steps are also a reason why the Perfect count is a bit high here.
Curus is kind of an odd song; it's a little too sombre to be considered Happy Hardcore, but the step patterns definitely would fit that mold. Probably the defining feature of the song is its many freeze notes; there's some neat little syncopations that go along with the holds. Not a terribly difficult 7-footer, but this one was fairly enjoyable to play.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#128||Gorgeous 2012||Heavy||222||48||6||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
I remember that I almost got a "AAA" on this song the first time that I played it (something like 2 or 3 Greats), then went back later and finished it off. Gorgeous 2012 stands out for having this bizarre male voice making some kind of wailing sound while you hold down a series of long freeze notes. I'm not sure what's going on with that... otherwise, nothing all that unusual here.
Many of these songs don't particularly stand out in my memory, but Shivers certainly does. This song loves its freeze notes, and it has all kinds of difficult offbeat step patterns running throughout the music. I especially had trouble with one particular group of triplets right in the middle of the song, where the music actually drops out for a measure or two. Stepping untimed triplets without making a mistake - NOT an easy task! Used Training Mode on this one, used it a LOT. I ended up with what I regard as a very good amount of Marvelouses for a song with this much chaos.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#130||Dynamite Rave (super euro version)||Heavy||244||66||11||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This song just confirms what I already knew: I don't really like Dynamite Rave all that much. I've now got "AAA"s on three different remixes of the song, and the only one I like is the B4 ZA Beat Mix version from DDRMax2. Anyway, as far as this particular song goes, I had a surprisingly easy time of things even though the steps are a bit complicated. I guess I just got lucky on one of my first few runs through the thing.
Robogirl likes its double steps, that's for sure... This is another licensed song that's actually pretty tough (and the atmospheric background music doesn't help, since it rarely follows the steps) but the slow tempo helps out a lot on this one. I don't remember all that much about this one, really.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#132||Battle Without Honor Or Humanity||Heavy||226||50||27||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This song is better known as "that music from the movie Kill Bill", and the steps that accompany it are really well done. I wasn't at all sure that I would be able to get a "AAA" on this one, given the amount of turning that has to be done, but with some practice (and a lot of tries) it turned out to be doable after all. Since this song is the first one that appears on the song wheel when starting up SuperNOVA, I had some extra incentive to get the "AAA" (I like to see the perfect score when starting out). Really like the steps here; I'll still play this one for fun.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#133||Knock Out Regrets||Heavy||272||69||44||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Another fast, relatively happy song (although this is more Japanese rock than anything else, I think). Knock Out Regrets get labeled as an 8-footer not so much because of having complicated steps, but because there's just so many of them (almost 350). There are a couple of tricky step-jumps in this song too. I actually enjoyed playing this one, and it felt like about the "right" amount of work to get the "AAA"; not easy, but with some practice it was entirely possible.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#134||Fly Away||Heavy||285||45||3||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
For being listed as a 7-footer, Fly Away certainly does have a lot of steps (330). I wouldn't say the patterns here are particularly complicated, but they're tough enough to trip you up without some preparation. This song reminded me of Higher Next Morning Mix from DDRMax2: similar speed and similarly "tougher than you think" steps. On the bright side, I had a pretty good Marvelous attack on this "AAA".
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#135||Star Gate Heaven||Heavy||222||59||5||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
One of the different things about DDR SuperNOVA is that the viewing window on the main dance screen is slightly larger than in the other "classic" versions that I have from DDRMax/Max2/Extreme. With more space for the notes to appear, I'm able to have the notes scroll at a faster speed and still be able to read them, and this song is a great example of that. I did Star Gate Heaven (145bpm) on 3x, a speed that would have been too fast for me to read in Extreme. While I'm still hoping that Konami will add 2.5x (as In The Groove has), in the meantime I was very glad here for the extra reaction time! Reading the syncopation on 2x was harder than expected (and I would have been hopelessly lost on 1x).
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#136||The Other Side||Heavy||263||58||6||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This song likes to have you hit one note over and over again in the first half, then throws in tons of gallops in the second half. There are also a couple of sixteenth note clusters in there too. The Other Side frustrated me for some time due to the gallops, but eventually I was able to get a clean run through it. As far as licensed songs go, this one is pretty decent, if not great.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#137||Gekkou Chou||Heavy||231||68||8||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Now this one is just fun. Gekkou Chou is FAST! (218bpm) and it has a bunch of great rhythms in it. Coping with the speed is pretty much the whole song, but it's very entertaining doing it. Thanks to SuperNOVA, I can do this one easily on 2x - not something I could try on other versions! Another song I still come back to play just for fun.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#138||Video Killed The Radio Star||Challenge||201||88||24||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
These are the Challenge steps to Video Killed the Radio Star; they're marginally better than the Heavy steps, but not by much. This was a sight-read "AAA" (my third in SuperNOVA), meaning I got the "AAA" the first time I ever played the song. That's the reason why the Marvelous count is so atrocious for this one. Since that's the one and only time I've ever played this one, there's not much more to say.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#139||Kagerow (Dragonfly)||Heavy||242||48||5||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Everything starts on the offbeat in this one; must... not... rush! The constant need to wait and not jump ahead of the beat makes Kagerow feel slower than it actually is, at least to me. The music is alright, but I just don't really like the steps on this one all that much. Oh well, another 7-footer down...
There's not a tremendous amount to say about Moon; it's a typical Heavy chart with eighth note streams and some basic syncopation that follows the melody of the song. It's by no means a bad song, just relatively unremarkable. I don't recall having any particular difficulty with this one, but it was nice to reach "AAA" #140.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#141||Tierra Buena||Heavy||194||52||5||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Tierra Buena is some sort of Mexican folk song redone for DDR; I'm not sure the effort is completely successful, but it's rather interesting nonetheless. I nearly had a "AAA" the first time I played this, but a triplet pattern in the middle of the song messed me up until I looked at it in more detail. If this were ITG, I'd play the song on 4x (and have a lower Perfect count), but this is DDR - so 3x it is.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#142||Baile Le Samba||Heavy||172||43||23||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
As you might guess, this is a samba piece done at a very slow speed with complex rhythms. It's a lot like some of my other favorite songs (Sana Morette Ne Ente comes to mind), so this one was a pleasure to work on until I got the "AAA". And yes - that's a little 5x symbol in the bottom left corner. Hey, is it my fault that Konami's default scroll speed puts the arrows WAY too close together?
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#143||Midnight Special||Heavy||213||54||14||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This song would be an unremarkable fast (180bpm) chart, except for two things. First of all, I'm pretty sure that the synching between the steps and the music is a little off in the middle, because things are definitely a little wonky there. And secondly, the song ends with four eighth note double steps... you can be sure that I messed up more than once there. Argh! I hate it when that happens. I think I even got an actual Black Flag (Great on the very last step of the song) once. Pretty rare to see that happen.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#144||Monkey Punk||Heavy||255||67||17||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Monkey Punk is listed at a 6-footer, but there's no way that that's correct, seeing as how the song has over 300 steps and several difficult turns to make while holding freeze notes. Sometimes I wonder what the people at Konami are smoking when they hand out these foot ratings... Anyway, the song itself is rather annoying, and the steps aren't particularly interesting either. I can't say I really liked this one or want to go back to it any time soon.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#145||Love Is Dreaminess||Heavy||364||101||5||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Now this one is definitely a good "AAA"! Love Is Dreaminess is rated as a 9-footer, and with well over 450 steps, it's easy to see why. Nothing particularly complicated in this song, just wave after wave of long eighth note runs. I can happily say that I double-stepped the whole thing and still managed to get the "AAA", although I won't be winning any contests with the resulting Marvelous attack! This was my fourth 9-footer "AAA" (My Summer Love, Can't Stop Fallin' In Love Speed Mix, Irresistiblement).
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#146||Brazilian Anthem||Heavy||215||54||12||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Another "Brazilian" song along the lines of Baile Le Samba or Trance de Janeiro from DDRMax2, but probably easier than both of them. The song is rather fun to play, with some complicated rhythms at a relatively slow tempo. Compared to some of the other "AAA"s I was doing at the time though, this one was a bit on the easy side.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#147||Ki Se Ki||Heavy||326||58||22||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Ke Se Ki is practically the definition of what an 8-footer should be, a challenging song with long streams and doubles mixed into the step patterns, yet lacking the raw speed or complexity to fall into the 9-footer category. I think that this is definitely one of the five best songs in SuperNOVA, and it was a lot of fun pursuing this one. I couldn't see the double steps very well on 2x, so a rather speedy (155bpm) 3x it had to be for this song. Since Ki Se Ki has almost 400 steps, I'd say this is a pretty good "AAA".
This one was tough to do, since L.E.F. doesn't have much of a melody and consists instead of electronic background music. Although the song is fortunately on the slow side, the steps are definitely more complex than usual. There's even one spot in the middle of the song with an sixteenth note followed by a double step - first time I've seen that outside of ITG! L.E.F. was one of the songs I had put aside initially and came back to later when I was really playing well.
Here's another song that I'm very proud to have gotten a "AAA" on. Even though these are only the Heavy steps to Doll instead of the tougher Challenge ones, I had a bear of a time working this one. In particular, I had to practice how to step the sixteenth note rhythm in the bridge of the song, and then the triplets at the end of the song were just murder. There were many times when I did the entire thing perfectly up to the ending, then screwed up in the last dozen steps - argh! Maybe I'll go back for the Challenge steps later, but for now I'm more than satisfied with this result.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#150||Sweet Sweet Magic||Heavy||372||33||90,000,000||DDRMax2 7th Mix|
There's a story behind this particular "AAA"... I intended to get the Heavy steps for Xepher as "AAA" #150, since it was my favorite song in SuperNOVA and a tough 9-footer to boot. However, after many MANY failed attempts at the song (despite getting insanely close), I finally put Xepher aside and went back to DDRMax2 for another old favorite. Sweet Sweet Magic is certainly more than worthy, as a very tough 9-footer featuring a little bit of everything: eighth note streams, gallops, step-jumps, and even a brief stop in the music. Going back to 7th Mix (one of my favorites) and its much tougher grading also helped make this one all the sweeter.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#151||Super Star Megamix||Challenge||282||8||70,000,000||DDRMax2 7th Mix|
And while I was there playing DDRMax2, I figured I may as well clean up a song that had been bugging me with 1 Great for ages, Super Star's Challenge remix. Of course, I got 1 Great about four more times before knocking this one out for good. Ha, take that! Finished it off for good now.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#152||Dance Dance||Heavy||298||65||11||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
OK, back to SuperNOVA now to clean up some more "AAA"s. I found Dance Dance to be the most interesting of the licensed songs in the game; while a lot of people posted online that they detested this one (emo rock does not usually get associated with DDR!), I found that the song's good steps manage to salvage it and make for a good chart. Of course, the big thing with Dance Dance is simply the raw speed factor: 229bpm is really, REALLY fast! But I was able to do it with 2x (just barely) and grab another "AAA" for the collection.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#153||Let's Dance||Challenge||235||54||13||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
These are the Challenge steps to the terrible song Let's Dance; they're marginally better, but still extremely repetitive and not enough to save this one. If I want to play a slow song in SuperNOVA, there are about a dozen other songs I'd rather do than this one. Moving on...
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#154||Heaven is a Place on Earth||Challenge||264||51||2||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This song is listed as a 9-footer, but it really doesn't feel any harder than most of the other 8-footers in this mix. I suppose it was given that rating just to distinguish the Challenge steps from the Heavy ones. Anyway, not an easy song by any means, but pretty similar to the Heavy steps for Heaven is a Place on Earth. Counting it as a 9-footer, this was my sixth "cata" "AAA".
iFuturelist is such a strange song! Lots of sixteenth note gallops interspersed with triplet patterns... well, I can't really describe it. You'll just have to hear it at some point, if you haven't already. I had a blast doing this one, let me tell you. The funny thing is that I was trying to get some of the sixteenths in the song by doing crossovers, and kept screwing up... so I went back to double-stepping and pulled it off flawlessly! Heh. I could never be a DDR pro at this rate, but for now it's getting the job done (and I'm having fun, which is all that really matters).
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#156||Star Gate Heaven (Future Love Mix)||Heavy||280||55||10||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
This one is considerably harder than the other Star Gate Heaven in SuperNOVA, adding syncopation all over the place to the melody. I like the chart, but it wasn't the easiest thing in the world to do. The ending in particular took some practice to make sure that I got it right.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#157||Tino's White Horse||Heavy||280||67||5||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Do you like gallops? That's pretty much this whole song. But the real tough part in Tino's White Horse is the tempo slowdown, followed by a gradual speedup back to the original tempo. All I could do there was watch the screen closely and follow my gut - it's hard to stay perfectly on the beat during an accelerando! There were a non-trivial number of screwups trying to get that correct.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#158||Quick Master||Heavy||208||65||11||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
I really probably should have gotten Quick Master sooner, but the rhythms in this song are definitely tricky, and the lack of much of an accompanying beat doesn't help. I kept screwing up one part in the middle of the song by double-stepping it; I had to go into Training Mode, isolate the particular passage, and figure out a different way to step it by starting the pattern on the opposite foot. Perhaps a bit tedious, but it got the job done. I don't want anyone to think that I'm getting all these scores based on raw talent; practice and preparation are probably 90% of the equation.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#159||Gamelan de Couple||Heavy||237||61||0||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
Gamelan - dancing cactuses, woohoo! (In a terrible travesty, that background video no longer appears in SuperNOVA.) I was never able to get this one in DDR Extreme, but fortunately in SuperNOVA I was able to turn on 3x and get it done without too much trouble.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#160||Knock Out Regrets||Challenge||292||77||22||10,000,000||DDR SuperNOVA|
For my last "AAA" in SuperNOVA before moving on for a while to other versions of DDR, I decided to do another 9-footer and the Challenge steps to Knock Out Regrets. While the song has some decently challenging step-jumps and holds, I would say the hardest part of the song is just the large number of overall notes. This one comes in at the easier end of the 9-foot scale, but I would say it's pretty comparable to Irresistiblement (to give one such example). In any case, a nice going-away present from SuperNOVA.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#161||I'm Gonna Get You!||Heavy||313||6||70,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Now back to DDR Extreme, the first song that I cleaned up was I'm Gonna Get You! This one really probably should have been done a long time ago, not sure why I didn't already have a "AAA"... Oh well, Extreme has so many songs, some of them are bound to slip through the cracks. A pretty typical 7-footer here.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#162||Hyper Eurobeat||Heavy||293||16||70,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Hyper Eurobeat is another song where I got 1 Great ages ago, then for no apparent reason didn't bother to polish it off into a "AAA". Fortunately I was able to fix that mistake now. Starting with Hyper Eurobeat and the "green" songs, I just started going around the Extreme wheel trying to "AAA" as many songs as possible that I had missed previously for some reason.
Memories, which is right next to Hyper Eurobeat, was the first such song to fall. The funny thing about Memories is that there was an error in the coding for the US version of Extreme, which made the song impossible to unlock (FINALLY a fix was released recently to solve that problem). That was never an issue in the Japanese version of Extreme; I just, uhh, didn't get the song "AAA"ed until now.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#164||Miracle Moon||Heavy||284||2||70,000,000||DDR Extreme|
The syncopated rhythm in Miracle Moon always used to throw me off when I played it, but I actually got a "AAA" on the first attempt when returning to Extreme. Is it possible that I'm still improving at DDR after all this time playing?! I certainly hope so.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#165||Speed Over Beethoven||Heavy||372||1||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
I really like this song a lot! A remixed version of Beethoven's Fur Elise, Speed Over Beethoven has a classic mixture of eighth note runs, gallops, and crossovers. This is the very essence of what an eight-footer should be. It was a blast to be able to "AAA" one of my favorites.
Ugh. Unlike the last song, Crash! is not one that I find myself playing often. It's nothing but quarters and eighths done at a very fast (200bpm) tempo. That sounds interesting, but Crash! keeps repeating the same rhythms over... and over... and over. Thankfully, I got this "AAA" on my second attempt at it (1 Good the first time) because I think I would have gone crazy if I had to do this one repeatedly!
Well after doing a number of difficult songs for "AAA"s, this one was surprisingly easy. Unlike the Challenge steps for Sync, the Heavy steps pretty much consist of basic quarter-eighth patterns. Lots and lots of crossovers, but not at a particularly fast speed. I don't have much to say about this one.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#168||Super Star||Heavy||289||0||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
A longtime DDR favorite, Super Star is another one of the songs put onto Extreme as part of its "greatest hits" compilation. This song was significant as one of the first ones to include sixteenth notes, way back in 4th Mix. Playing it now (with some help from 3x), it was not all that difficult to "AAA".
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#169||Sexy Planet||Heavy||262||0||70,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Natually I had to do "Sexy Planet" for song number 169, right? Although this is a pretty typical 7-footer, some of the stepping patterns are a bit weird, and for whatever reason I used to have problems when I played it. And for the record, this is not the same song as the "Sexy Planet" that I "AAA"ed for #67 on DDRMax2 7th Mix. Heh. Konami sure knows how to make things confusing.
Ahh, Tears - I think pretty much everyone agrees that this is a tough 9-footer. I used to hate this song when I first started playing DDR, due to the complex rhythms that run throughout the music, but now it's among my favorites. A very sad-sounding song, even if I can't understand what the Japanese lyrics are saying. This probably stands among my best "AAA"s, and it was my seventh 9-footer ("cata") perfect score.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#171||Think Ya Better D||Heavy||237||0||50,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Somehow, I apparently never got this "AAA" earlier. I'm not sure how's that's possible, but in any case, I did get "Think Ya Better D" on my second try. 5-footers... yeah. Just taking out the trash here, nothing to see!
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#172||Drop The Bomb||Heavy||304||0||60,000,000||DDR Extreme|
See above. And in more name confusion, this is "Drop the Bomb", not "Drop the Bomb System SF Mix", which I did for "AAA" #72.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#173||Luv To Me||Heavy||358||0||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Luv to Me is on the easier side of the 9-footers; it reminds me a lot of Irresistiblement in terms of difficulty, if not in the song's style. The defining feature of this song is a series of eighth notes, concluding with a double-step at the end. I definitely remember that giving me lots of problems a couple years ago, but it's just fun to do now. Luv to Me is not one of my favorites, but it's still a decent song.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#174||Brilliant2U Orchestra Groove||Challenge||309||0||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
OK, this is the ultimate example of song naming confusion. There are two different songs in DDR Extreme with similar names: Brilliant2U and Brilliant2U Orchestra Groove, both with Heavy AND Challenge steps. I already had Brilliant2U Heavy (#55), Brilliant2U Challenge (#59), and Brilliant2U Orchestra Groove Heavy (#57), so this last one (Brilliant2U Orchestra Groove Challenge) finally completed the set. Whew. The steps to this one feature lots of crossovers, which was why I wasn't able to do this one previously.
The Challenge steps for Colors are probably among my five favorites in all of the various DDR games. There are sixteenth notes all over the place, but they fit the music almost perfectly and the overall effect is simply outstanding. Not an easy one to "AAA" either - I had been trying to get this one for more than a year! I made sure to get this for "AAA" #175 to make it a bit more significant. Unfortunately the picture came out a little blurry, blah.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#176||Wild Rush||Heavy||247||0||60,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Wild Rush is listed as a 6-footer here, and the steps themselves are not very difficult, but that info is rather deceptive. Wild Rush starts out at a measly 80bpm, then continuously increases tempo until it ends up at a brisk 180bpm. I think it changes tempo something like five or six times throughout the course of the song. So while the steps may not be that bad, it's tough to remain perfectly on the beat through so many tempo changes! That's the main reason why this remained undone for so long (last 6-footer to be "AAA"ed in Extreme).
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#177||La Senorita||Heavy||294||0||70,000,000||DDR Extreme|
The joke for this song with my friends was always that it sounds like a Ricky Martin song, even though of course it isn't. A fairly generic 7-footer, La Senorita is noteworthy mostly for its Latin feel (especially the triplets in the middle). Otherwise, not all that remarkable.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#178||La Senorita Virtual||Heavy||359||0||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
And right after La Senorita is the remixed version of the song (yes, I did that deliberately). I don't think that this is one of 2MB's better remixes (it's nowhere near as good as, say, Healing Vision Angelic Mix) but the song is significantly more difficult than the original. I had to work this one a bit to catch all of the double-steps before getting the "AAA".
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#179||Make It Better||Heavy||212||0||70,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Make It Better is a flat-out horrendous song. This is a holdover from 1st Mix days, and the age shows very badly. Not only are the steps made up of stupid eighth note double-steps, but there are no fewer than SEVEN measures of rest to start the song. Seven! That's absurd. Trying playing "Ska Ska No. 3" to see how this song should have been done.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#180||Frozen Ray||Heavy||395||3||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Frozen Ray is best known for a series of eighth-eighth-quarter patterns in the middle of the song where the player is supposed to spin around in complete circles in order to continue alternating feet. Did I do that? Heck no! I don't even turn when stepping songs like Afronova, so of course I just did the lame double-stepping. Aside from that, Frozen Ray also throws in enough sixteenth note gallops at odd times to be interesting. This was my tenth 9-footer "AAA", which I thought was a pretty good achievement.
R3 is a pretty generic 7-footer, aside from having lots and lots of double taps on the same arrow (in similar fasion to Feeling of Love). What made this song special was the fact that it gave me a "AAA" on every song rated at 7 feet or lower. All 5-footer, 6-footer, and 7-footers "AAA"ed in Extreme (on Heavy/Challenge, not the lower difficulties). Considering all the songs in this mix (there are 46 rated at 7 feet or lower), I think that's pretty cool.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#182||Love This Feelin'||Heavy||242||0||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
I first played this song back in DDRMax USA, where it featured very bad synching between the music and the steps. Things are much better in Exteme, but the big tempo change still made it a bit tricky to "AAA". Thank goodness for 2x, a lifesaver in the slow part at the beginning!
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#183||321 Stars||Heavy||308||7||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
321 Stars is what I'd consider to be a typical 8-footer: fast and with lots of steps, but not complex or difficult enough to be ranked as a 9-footer. This song has a very strange pseudo-triplet pattern right before the end that was giving me fits when I tried to "AAA" it. Had to go back to Training Mode twice and listen to it again before I was able to get the final score. Argh.
The Heavy steps for A aren't as tough as the Challenge ones, but definitely still worthy of the 8-footer label. For no apparent reason, I had to play this one over a dozen times in order to get the "AAA", even though there were no sections that were giving me trouble. Sometimes that happens, but it's always irritating when it does!
This has always been one of my favorite songs in all of the DDR games, and it was my great pleasure to polish off the Challenge steps to V with a "AAA". I had done the significantly easier Heavy steps a while back (#96), but the rapid-fire sixteenth note groups on the Challenge version required a lot more practice. It's not easy to keep the timing of the feet moving perfectly through those groupings! A very nice "AAA" to have.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#186||Kakumei||Challenge||317||7||80,000,000||DDR Extreme||#187||Kakumei||Heavy||371||7||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Continuing with the classical music theme, I remembered that the Challenge steps to Kakumei (which I rarely play) were pretty easy, so I went back and practiced it a bit until I had a perfect score. Then since I was already hovering over Kakumei on the song wheel, I thought "why not try the Hard steps too?" and proceeded to get 1 Great, followed by a second "AAA". The Challenge steps to this song are a little bland, but the Heavy ones are excellent. Hopefully Konami will keep throwing out more of these remixed classical songs from time to time (No.13 in SuperNOVA is quite good, for example).
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#188||Daikenkai||Heavy||425||16||80,000,000||DDR Extreme||#189||Daikenkai||Challenge||433||16||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
And shortly after I got the Kakumei pair, I did the same thing with Daikenkai. Heh. The two step charts for this song are actually very much alike, with the Challenge version throwing in just a few more double-steps into the streams. The one thing that had been holding me back previously was the tempo change in the middle of the song, and once I got that down I was able to do both of these pretty fast. Too bad the picture for the Heavy version of Daikenkai came out so poorly...
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#190||Paranoia Max Dirty Mix||Heavy||340||0||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
I had left the Paranoias and Trip Machines alone earlier, partly because they're all rather difficult step charts, partly because I wanted to see if I could get them towards the end of my push towards 200 "AAA"s. Therefore it seemed fitting to get one of the Paranoias for #190, even if it was one of the easier ones. This is a legacy of the older DDR mixes (note the lack of freeze notes), but it still makes for a good challenge. Took some practicing.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#191||Paranoia KCET||Heavy||351||0||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
Here's an irony for you: Paranoia KCET is noticeably easier than other Paranoias like the Dirty Mix above and Paranoia Evolution, yet they're both ranked as 8-footers while this one is classified as a 9-footer. Hmmm... perhaps Konami feels the need to make itself feel big and strong? (KCET stands for Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo). Anyway, this is one of the worst Paranoias - no flow to the steps at all - and I was able to get it done rather easily.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#192||Paranoia Evolution||Heavy||375||0||80,000,000||DDR Extreme|
This one will always be a special song for me. Paranoia Evolution was among the toughest songs on DDRMax USA, the version of DDR where I learned how to play. I fondly remember looking at the Heavy steps in Training Mode and thinking I would NEVER be able to do that one! It was a grand achievement for me the first time I passed this song, then when I was able to "A" it, "AA" it, and now, finally, complete it fully with the "AAA". Almost three years of practice went into this one, so you can imagine how satisfying it was to cross Paranoia Evolution off my list.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#193||Paranoia Rebirth||Heavy||433||0||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
This is one of the really hard Paranoias; there's a reason why I left this until the end. Rebirth is a pretty old DDR song, but the steps are fiendishly difficult and the pace very rapid. It's a heck of a lot of fun to play though. I first realized I could do this one when I got 3 Greats on it while playing DDRMax2 7th Mix. Ended up cleaning it up here along with the other Paranoias.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#194||Paranoia Eternal||Heavy||381||5||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
And with Paranoia Eternal, I completed my clean sweep of ALL of the Paranoias in DDR Extreme, outside of the 10-footers, of course. Frankly, I expected this one to be harder than it was; I think Rebirth was a bit tougher. I'll have to go back and grab a screenshot of the in-game High Scores list; it looks really cool to have "AAA"s next to all those different Paranoias! Getting them was one of my goals for this "AAA" binge, and I'm happy I was able to pull it off. Next up was finishing off the rest of the Trip Machines.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#195||Trip Machine Climax||Heavy||342||0||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
I had already done most of the Trip Machines (original, Jungle, Luv Mix) previously, but the hardest two remained. Trip Machine Climax is almost certainly the toughest one of the Trip Machines, and it's also the only one that I happen to like. The booming bass in the intro, followed by a series of rapid eighth note streams remains the trademark of the song - good stuff. Pretty similar to the Paranoias overall, of course.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#196||Trip Machine Survivor||Heavy||347||2||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
This song, on the other hand, is a joke. The whole gimmick of the song consists of throwing in an early slowdown and some strange stops in the music. There's basically no melody whatsoever, and the steps make little sense. All in all, just a poor effort for what was supposed to be a boss song (there's a reason why this was the last Trip Machine song). I've never come across anyone who enjoyed playing this one, and it seems to be surprisingly little known for such a recent song. Still, Trip Machine Survivor gave me a clean sweep on all 5 Trip Machine songs, which I thought was pretty neat.
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#197||Dance Dance Revolution||Heavy||352||0||90,000,000||DDR Extreme|
While I was doing the boss songs in Extreme, I figured I might as well get Dance Dance Revolution (the song) finished as well. This was originally going to be the final DDR song, until Konami realized that they would be foolish not to keep releasing new versions and raking in easy cash. I'd say it's a medium-difficulty 9-footer, distinguished mostly by its references to the steps of other songs.
I did the Heavy steps to Sync a little bit earlier (#167), but the Challenge steps are quite a bit tougher. Sync repeats the same pattern over and over again, but fortunately manages to do so in a pretty interesting way. I really didn't expect to get this one at all, since the pattern involves a great deal of turning, but apparently I CAN, in fact, double-step the notes fast enough to get a perfect score. As I was badly running out of songs in Extreme to "AAA", this was a welcome addition!
Ahhh, Stoic... what a great song. I think this is the favorite song of my friend Chris. Stoic starts out with simple quarter notes, and things slowly get more and more complicated, culminating in a lengthy eighth note stream where every fourth note is a double hit - and ending with a bunch of sixteenth notes that lead into a stop, followed by MORE eighth note runs with double-steps thrown in. Whew! Always a good workout. Timing the stop is the hardest part; took some practice. A lot of practice.
So what would song #200 be? I've got 1 Great on Xepher, Destiny Lovers, Dynamite Rave (both Heavy and Challenge versions) as well as any number of assorted lesser songs. But I figured I'd go in a different direction entirely...
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||#200||Remember You||Heavy||197||0||50,000,000||DDRMax USA|
...by doing the first Heavy song I ever played. Look, I've done all number of hard songs; every song from #190 to #199 was a 9-footer (or should be, in the case of Paranoia Evolution). I have 20 different 9-footer "AAA"s so far, and worked my butt off getting a lot of them. More to the point, the DDR community has gone overboard in chasing score to the exclusion of all else. By picking such a ridiculously easy song for my 200th milestone, I'm trying to demonstrate that it's all about the fun, not the scoring. This song, and DDRMax USA as a whole, will always have a special place in my heart. Plus, this is the music that plays in the "goodbye" credits in DDR Extreme, so it's not as strange of a choice as you might think.
* * * * *
|AAA||Name||Difficulty||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||-||Feel Emotion Non-Stop Course||Normal||388||-||120,000,000||DDRMax2 USA|
Deserving special mention separate from the rest is this "AAA" on a Non-Stop course, which I actually got before my first Heavy "AAA"! Done on a crappy soft pad too, if you can believe it. Granted, that was a course made up of 4 songs on Light, but I'm still counting it!
|AAA||Name||Marvelous||Perfects||OKs||Score||Version||-||Classic Oni Course||618||118||45||2225||DDR Extreme|
And another "AAA" on an Oni course, the Classic one in DDR Extreme. Admittedly, it's only three Standard songs, but that's still 700+ steps without a single Great!
* * * * *
That completes my quest for 200 "AAA"s (finished as of March 11, 2007). It took longer than expected, and there were a lot of bumps along the road. But I ended up getting many, many different songs that I never expected I would be able to achieve along the way. If anyone is reading this, I hope perhaps it will inspire them to make their own journey someday in pursuit of a difficult milestone. Until another time then, I bid you adieu.