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DDR Freak Dictionary

1/4 step Placed on the beat of the song. Most basic songs are composed entirely of quarter notes. Shown in the steps page on this site in red.
1/8 step Placed exactly halfway between the beats of the song. Shown in the steps page on this site in blue.
1/16 step Placed exactly halfway between 1/8 steps. Dynamite Rave Single Maniac has several patterns which includes sixteenth steps. Shown in the steps page on this site in purple.
1/32 step Placed exactly halfway between 1/16 steps. New to DDRMAX2 and beyond, and first featured in Tsugaru Heavy.
1.5x/2x/3x/5x/8x See Speed Modifiers.
573 A number pattern which appears throughout the DDR series and other Konami games. The significance comes from Japanese wordplay. Here's how it works: "573" spelled out would be go-nana-san. "Go" is the sound produced when you add yoon to the letter "Ko". Often when counting numbers rapidly, Japanese will truncate the sound of multisyllable words to a single syllable -> "Na". The Kanji character for 3 is a series of three horizontal lines vertically arranged, which looks similar to the Katakana for "Mi". "Ko"-"Na"-"Mi".
Absolute March Marching from left to right when there is a measure of 1/4th left and right arrows. Innovated by DCB at the SVGL2 tournament in 2002.
AC Acronym for "Arcade Cabinet", a term that refers to Japanese arcade games, as opposed to CS for home version software.
Accumulate Non-selectable modifier present in DDR Extreme's US release. In this mode, instead of having the four arrow columns separated, all the arrows are combined into a single column.
AI Refers to Arcade Infinity, one of the first and most well-known Bemani arcades in the country.
Air Number of jumps in a song
Almost This is the Boo step rating in US home version games. It comes between Good and Boo.
Another Another name for Trick used in some versions of DDR
Auto-fail Refers to a setting which determines if a song ends immediately when the player's dance gauge is completely empty, or if the player is allowed to finish the song before the game ends.
Balut Filipino delicacy. Similar to an aborted duck fetus boiled in the shell.
Bar Hugger One who refuses to let go of the bar and adamantly puts all their weight on the bar behind them throughout the whole song.
Bar Raping An unflattering term for bar-hugging.
Basic Easiest mode of steps on most versions of DDR. Difficulty is generally between 1 and 5 feet
Battle A mode of playing two players. Both players' arrows begin overlapped in the center at the bottom of the screen and branch outwards to the appropriate player's side. Introduced in 4th mix.
Beginner Easiest level of all. In DDR USA and Dancing Stage EuroMIX, all songs in Beginner are only 1 foot. Beginner mode was later brought back in the arcade release of DDR Extreme, and added to subsequent home version releases. In the Extreme and later, Beginner is actually a selectable step difficulty instead of a separate mode. Songs are generally 1 and 2 feet, with the occasional 3 foot, and the song is automatically considered "passed", even if no steps are hit. This allows novice players to receive their full set of songs even if they're new to the game.
Bemani Konami's collection of music games, sometimes used by fans to refer generically to music games.
Beatmania Konami's original music game. Featuring 5 keys and a turntable where you hit keys in time to the music. Eventually superseded by Beatmania IIDX, the last game in the series was named, not coincidentally, "Beatmania: The Final".
Beatmania IIDX A very popular revisiting of the Beatmania series, featuring 7 keys. Many songs from IIDX have found their way into DDR.
Beginner The easiest difficulty available in some DDR games. In 3rd Mix, Beginner would force the player to a set of simplistic stepcharts under the Basic level. In Extreme and newer, the player is allowed to pick harder stepcharts if he/she chooses Beginner, but cannot fail the game if playing on Beginner steps. Additionally, when one or both players picks Beginner in Extreme, the background animations are replaced with animated characters dancing on an arcade machine or dance mat (as appropriate to the version played), stepping on the arrow patterns as illustrated by the stepchart.
Black Flag Passing a song with all Perfects, and one single Great.
Bong Thomas Bar flare, where the person lifts his/her body to go around the bar. Bong - bar (in Korean), Thomas - name of the gymnast who originated the move. (Thanks to Jason Ho for the definition.)
Boo The rating you get on a step when you hit the arrow pretty off-beat. In the US home versions, this is equivalent to a Miss.
Boost Same as Special on Solo2k, but featured on DDR Max. The arrows continually speed up as they get closer to the top.
Brake A modifier only available in the Trick Oni course in DDR Extreme, where the arrows slow down dramatically as they reach the top of the screen.
Butterfly Turn The original series of steps featured in Butterfly on which many players first turned.
Cata Short for Catastrophic, generally refers to a 9-footer song. Eg - "passing a cata".
Catastrophic The most difficult song ranking given to songs appearing on mixes prior to DDR MAX (6th mix). 9 footers.
Caution Drop Move used typically in PIU (but can be applied to DDR) where the player steps on two diagonals, then the center, then hits the other two diagonals with his/her hands
Chaos Irregularity of steps
Challenge Can refer to Challenge Mode or Challenging Mode (See below), but generally refers to the Challenge difficulty found in songs on DDR MAX2 and later. Many songs from DDR MAX2 featured steps exclusively on the Challenge level. Later songs in DDR Extreme featured Challenge steps as an alternate set of Heavy steps (see Maniac2).
Challenge Mode Game mode in 4th Mix PSX and Extra Mix where the player is presented with specific goals to meet, such as playing a song with special modifiers, earning a particular score, or passing a particular portion of a song with specific characteristics. Not to be confused with Challenging Mode.
Challenging Mode See Oni Mode.
C-Mod A type of Speed Mod available in Stepmania and ITG which forces the arrows to scroll at a constant BPM rate regardless of tempo changes. This makes songs with frequent tempo changes easier.
Couple A mode of playing for two players where the steps complement each other.
Combo Number that represents your most recent sequence of consecutive perfects and greats.
Crossover Refers to one of two techniques in dance play. The first is a technique often used in songs with a stream of 1/8th notes such as Can't Stop Fallin' In Love ~Speed Mix~ or Exotic Ethnic where the rapid movement of steps causes the player to rotate repeatedly without stopping. The second technique deals with Double play specifically, and refers to "crossing over" between the 1P and 2P pads.
CS Acronym for "Consumer Software", a term that refers to Japanese home versions, as opposed to AC for arcades.
Dance Dance Revolution One of the games in Konami's Bemani series. Involves stepping on arrows in rhythm
Dancemania A record label owned by Toshiba-EMI in Japan, Dancemania has provided a great deal of Konami's licensed music for DDR games.
Dancing Stage The name DDR goes by in Europe.
Dance With Intensity One of many unofficial computer DDR simulators.
Dark mode Mode of playing where stationary arrows at top do not appear. Introduced in DDR Max2 (7th mix).
DDR Abbreviation for Dance Dance Revolution
Decent ITG's step rating which is approximately equivalent to a Good.
Diet Mode Japanese name for Workout Mode.
Difficult DDR USA's equivalent of trick. Also on Dancing Stage EuroMIX.
Double A mode where the player dances on both sides of the pad at once.
DWI see Dance With Intensity.
Easy The easiest of five difficulty levels in DDR Mario Mix. Since Mario Mix does not use foot-ratings, the difficulty levels cannot be directly mapped to the difficulties found in DDR.
Edit Certain versions of DDR allow the player to insert a memory card and play steps that he/she created at home on a PC or a console.
Encore Extra Stage Another (unofficial) name for One More Extra Stage.
Excellent ITG's step rating which is approximately equivalent to a Perfect.
Exorbitant Name given to 8-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
Expert DDR USA's equivalent of maniac. Also on Dancing Stage EuroMIX.
Extra Stage In DDRMAX Arcade and later, if you AA your last song on Heavy (or Challenge if that's the only difficulty available), you'll get an extra challenge to meet. The song/modifiers are different for each version, but Extra Stage is always Reverse and Power Drop.
Fantastic ITG's step rating which is approximately equivalent to a Marvelous. Unlike DDR, which has only used Marvelous in Nonstop and Oni Courses, ITG judges Fantastic ratings on all modes.
Flat Mode where arrows are all the same color, regardless of beat. See Vivid
Footer Shorthand term for Foot Rating.
Foot Rating A measurement for the difficulty of song, ranging from 1 (easiest) to 10 (hardest). Unofficial stepcharts and versions of DDR have used higher foot ratings.
Free Play Usually refers to a setting in arcade machines which enables the machine to be played without inserting any credits. Whenever a machine is operating in Free Play, the text "Free Play" will flash at the bottom of the screen where the words "Insert Credit", "Game Over", or similar text would appear. Also refers to the traditional gameplay mode in Ultramix 3.
Freestyle A way of playing DDR where the object is to look good and perform for an audience
Freeze Number of freeze steps; also refers to the step introduced in DDR Max that requires the player to hold an arrow for some defined time
Full Combo To complete a song with the maximum possible combo - only Great steps and above.
Fuwa Fuwa A modifier only available in the Trick Oni course in DDR Extreme, where the arrows move up and down in an accordion-like fashion before hitting the top of the screen.
Gallop Any isolated pair of successive 16th notes. Best exemplified in In the Navy SSR, or Cowgirl Maniac.
Gauge Bar that represents how well you are hitting the steps. When the bar reaches the bottom, your game is over
Genuine Name given to 6-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
Good The rating you get on a step when you hit the arrow more than slightly off-beat
Good Attack A method of playing where the object is to get the most Goods possible
Goo Goo Soundy A little-known PlayStation game released by Konami which had, among other game modes, a DDR-like mode which would automatically generate steps to music from an audio CD put in the PlayStation.
Great The rating you get on a step when you hit the arrow slightly before or after the beat. Keeps your combo going.
Great Attack A method of playing where the object is to get the most Greats possible
Groove Radar Introduced in DDR Max. Graphical representation of the song difficulty replacing the old 1-9 foot rating system. Measures five attributes: Voltage, Stream, Chaos, Freeze, and Air.
Half-Doubles Gameplay mode found in some versions of PIU where, instead of normal 10-panel Freestyle doubles, the steps would only use the six innermost panels. Somewhat akin to playing in Center Mode on Dance Maniax.
Hand Plant Using your hand to hit a panel. Also a gameplay feature in ITG and PIU, where the presence of three simultaneous arrows forces players to use their hands to strike a third panel.
Hand Slap See Hand Plant.
Hard The third of five difficulty levels in DDR Mario Mix. Since Mario Mix does not use foot-ratings, the difficulty levels cannot be directly mapped to the difficulties found in DDR.
Heavy Equivalent to Maniac difficulty, but used on DDR MAX/6th mix and newer versions.
Help Arrow Modifier found in Ultramix where extra arrows would appear during the song. Hitting these arrows successfully boosts the player's dance gauge. If the player misses the arrow, he/she receives no penalty.
Hidden Mode of playing where arrows disappear before reaching the top of the screen.
Hi Guys! What began as an inside joke at SVGL2. Phrase coined by the Killer Pals as a universal greeting.
IIDX See Beatmania IIDX.
Impromptu Form of freestyle in which the player makes up his routine on the spot without prior preparation.
In The Groove Fan-made DDR upgrade which can be installed on most DDR machines. Intended to continue to series after the long hiatus following DDR Extreme.
ITG See In The Groove.
Joint Premium A setting on the arcade machine that arcade operators can set that allows both pads to be used for one credit. Therefore, a game of Versus or Doubles costs the same as a single game.
Knee Drop Using your knee to hit a panel.
Konami The well-known video game company that invented DDR and Bemani.
Konami Original Refers to songs either created by Konami-employed artists like Naoki Maeda and Sota Fujimori, or songs commissioned by Konami from independent artists such as Thomas Howard and Jesper Kyd.
Koshiru Shuffle Dance move in Boom Boom Dollar Maniac where one hand is on the opposite pad, body is horizontal.
Left A mode of playing where the steps are rotated 90 degrees to the left.
Left Foot Only A style of playing where the player only uses his left foot to hit all the steps.
Light The easiest difficulty level above Beginner, equivalent to the Basic difficulty from earlier games.
Link Data Machines equipped with memory card slots are capable of saving data which can be read by home version DDR games. Depending on the machine, Link Data can provide Internet Ranking, saving of song/course records, or both.
Little Code that removes all steps except for quarter steps from a song. Often used to allow a less skilled player to play with a more advanced player on mixes that don't allow players to choose different difficulties.
LFO Abbreviation for Left Foot Only
Magic Dance A competitive battle mode seen in the Disney versions of DDR. Good performance allows one player to send temporary modifiers to the other player, such as speed modifiers, fake arrows, and more.
Maniac Most difficult mode of steps on most versions of DDR. Difficulty is generally between 6 and 9 feet.
Maniac2 Term created and used on this site to denote the new maniac steps on 4th mix plus for old songs. Usually significantly harder than the old maniac steps. See Butterfly Upswing Mix.
Maniac-S Term on 4th mix plus and 5th mix machines to denote the old maniac single steps. On these machines, Maniac then refers to the new steps.
Maniac-D Term on 4th mix plus and 5th mix machines to denote the old maniac double steps.
Marathon ITG's version of Nonstop Courses.
Marvellous Somewhat of an inside joke, refers to the European spelling of Marvelous which is used in the Dancing Stage games and, strangely enough, in the DDR Extreme console release in the US.
Marvelous Term used in non-stop and Oni courses in DDR Extreme to denote perfect timing for a step. This accuracy is higher than "Perfect". Also name given to 5-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
Matrix Walk Freestyle move where the performer puts one hand on the bar and walks on the screen. Most people frown on this, as it is known to damage machines
MGL Refers to Milpitas Golfland, a well-known arcade in California.
Mines Gameplay feature found in ITG where a mine is shown in the arrow field. Players must make sure not to be standing on the arrow panel when the mine crosses, or the dance gauge will drop.
Mirror Mode of playing where arrows are rotated 180 degrees.
Miss The rating you get on a step when you don't hit the arrow anytime close to the beat, or miss it completely. This rating is known as Boo in the US home versions.
Mission Mode Game mode present in newer DDR games which is identical to Challenge Mode from 4th Mix PSX and Extra Mix.
Moderate Name given to 2-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
Modifiers Options set prior to playing a song which affect how the arrows are displayed on-screen, such as Sudden, Boost, and Shuffle.
Mods See Modifiers. Also refers to the moderation staff at DDR Freak.
Newbie Person who is a beginner on DDR
N.G. Stands for 'No Good.' Rating given when you miss a freeze.
Nonstop Mode Game mode seen in 3rd Mix and returning in Extreme Arcade where players pick a series of 3-5 songs (depending on machine settings, usually 4) and then play them back-to-back. Later home version games which came after Extreme's arcade release featured the option of Nonstop courses as long as 20 songs.
No Regain See Power Drop.
Normal The second-easiest of five difficulty levels in DDR Mario Mix. Since Mario Mix does not use foot-ratings, the difficulty levels cannot be directly mapped to the difficulties found in DDR.
OK Rating given when you hold a freeze successfully.
OMES See One More Extra Stage.
One More Extra Stage Earned in some DDR games after successfully earning an AA rating on Extra Stage. Usually not as technically difficult as Extra Stage, but instead derives its challenge from the fatigue incurred by the Extra Stage.
Oni Japanese for "Devil", this refers to either Oni Mode (See below), or the Challenge difficulty level for steps.
Oni Mode Also known as Challenging Mode. A variation of Nonstop in which the player gets 4 lives, losing one life for each Good, Boo, Miss, or NG. Player regains between zero and three lives between each song.
Ordinary Name given to 3-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
PA Common abbreviation for Perfect Attack.
Paramount Name given to 7-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
Perfect The rating you get on a step when you hit the arrow exactly on the beat
Perfect Attack A method of judging accuracy among players. The predominant method used for tournaments in the United States. Score is based on percentage of perfect steps out of total steps, without regard to combo's.
Phantom Modifier introduced in Extreme US and Ultramix 2 which combines Hidden and Sudden - The arrows are briefly visible in the middle of the screen.
PIU Abbreviation for Pump It Up. A Korean dancing game franchise similar to DDR.
Poison Arrows Modifier introduced in Ultramix 2 where certain off-color arrows are added to the stepchart. If these arrows are stepped on, the dance gauge will drop significantly.
Power Drop Non-selectable modifier which prevents the dance gauge from rebuilding during a song. The only way to finish a song with a full gauge when playing with Power Drop active is to get no steps less than a Good (and hold all Freezes successfully, if applicable).
Quad Gameplay feature in ITG where the presence of four simultaneous arrows forces players to strike all four panels using all four limbs, or whatever method possible. Also refers to Quad Mode from Ultramix 2.
Quad Mode Game mode the debuted in Ultramix 2, featuring four DDR pads arranged in a horizontal row, similarly to Doubles.
Random Songlist option which causes a random song to immediately be picked. Similar to Roulette, except the player has zero control over the selection process.
RFO Abbreviation for Right Foot Only
Reverse When the arrows scroll from top to bottom instead of the usual bottom to top.
Reverse Boost See Brake.
Right A mode of playing where the steps are rotated 90 degrees to the right.
Right Foot Only A style of playing where the player only uses his right foot to hit all the steps.
Rolls Introduced in In The Groove 2, Rolls are similar to freezes, except instead of holding the step(s) for a specific duration, the player must instead tap the arrow(s) repeatedly at a rate of at least three times per second. This is independent of the actual tempo of the song.
Roulette Songlist option which causes the song wheel to spin like a roulette wheel. Hit the selection button again to stop the wheel and play the selected song. With practice and timing, Roulette can be timed to land on specific songs. See also Random.
Routine A predefined set of moves a performer uses for a given set of steps on a particular song
S4R 1. Sudden Shuffle on SSR mode.
2. Stealth Shuffle on SSR mode. In this mode, the player must play with another person who plays the steps without modification. The S4R player figures out which shuffle mode has been chosen, and must figure out which steps to hit.
Save Rating given in Unison mode when one person misses their arrow, but their partner hits it.
Score Attack A method of judging accuracy. Points are allotted differently among versions of DDR. Highest score wins.
SDG Single Digit Great; Refers to Perfect Attack players who are less than 10 greats from achieving a Perfect combo on a song.
Shuffle Mode of playing where arrows are shuffled in one of eight possible patterns. Contrary to popular belief, the arrow patterns are not random; only the selection of the pattern is.
Sight Read Playing a song without having seen/played/heard the song or the steps beforehand
Simple Name given to 1-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
Single The most common method of playing DDR. One player, four arrows, infinite possibilities.
Sink Arrows scroll from top down instead of bottom up. See also Reverse.
Slide Using one foot to press one panel then another without lifting it off the stage, but by dragging it across the panels instead
Solo 6-panel version of DDR with the inclusion of upper-left and upper-right diagonal arrows. Also used as a setting in DDRMAX/Extreme which adds more colorful arrows to make sight-reading easier.
Song Pack Purchaseable downloads of songs made available by Konami for the Xbox home versions of DDR. Requires Xbox Live.
Special Arrows accelerate on their way up the screen. Featured only on Solo 2k.
Speed Modifiers Modifiers (x2, x3, etc) that speed up the arrows to n-times their normal speed. Many players find songs easier to sight-read this way -- especially songs with very dense arrow patterns (bag, ORION.78). Some versions of DDR also have modifiers (x0.5, x0.25) which slow down the arrow speed and are available only in Oni courses. Several people have created hacked versions of DDR which have these modifiers available for normal play.
Spin Pivoting on a single foot 360 degrees.
SSR Abbreviation for Step Step Revolution.
Standard DDR USA's equivalent of basic. Also on Dancing Stage EuroMIX. Standard is DDRMAX/Extreme's equiavent of Trick.
Stealth Mode of playing where arrows don't appear until you've missed them already.
Stepmania Another popular unofficial computer DDR simulator. See also Dance With Intensity.
Step Step Revolution Another name for Maniac mode on certain versions of DDR. In addition to being on Maniac by default, the Flat modifier is applied by default.
Stream Overall density of steps
SubS Refers to "Substream" Club Mix, an old version of DDR which could be connected to a Beatmania IIDX cabinet, permitting a dancer and a DJ to play songs together.
Sudden Mode of playing where arrows appear just before they reach the top.
Super Hard The hardest difficulty level in DDR Mario Mix. Since Mario Mix does not use foot-ratings, the difficulty levels cannot be directly mapped to the difficulties found in DDR, but this one is generally accepted as 'Heavy'.
Superior Name given to 4-foot songs in older versions of DDR.
SVGL Refers to Sunnyvale Golfland, a popular and well-known arcade in California.
System 573 Internal name of the hardware platform which DDR arcade games run on. Very similar to the PlayStation architecture. Originally DDR arcade games ran on System 573 Analog, but 3rd Mix and higher used System 573 Digital.
Trick Middle mode of steps on most versions of DDR. Difficulty is generally between 4 and 7 feet.
Triplets Elusive step whose existence was in doubt for some time. These steps break a single beat into 3 equal steps, or sometimes breaks two quarter beats into 3 steps. Only a few songs feature these special steps. A few single maniac songs include Gentle Stress, Afronova, Luv 2 Me. Shown in the steps page in green.
Turn Any series of steps on which a player rotates his body 360 degrees
UMA Acronym for Unidentified Mysterious Animal. Refers to a common Japanese acronym mostly referring to the Tsuchinoko, a mythical Japanese snake. This term is spoken by the announcer in DDR MAX to imply that the player is legendary, and is also a character genre in 3rd Mix CS.
Unison Both players share one group of arrows in the center of the screen; the color of the arrows determine which player it belongs to.
Versus Same as single player steps, but for two players.
Very Hard The second-hardest of five difficulty levels in DDR Mario Mix. Since Mario Mix does not use foot-ratings, the difficulty levels cannot be directly mapped to the difficulties found in DDR.
Vivid Mode of playing where arrows are colored according to their beat timing. All quarter notes are in one color, eighth notes in another color, etc. See Flat.
Voltage Peak density of steps
Wave See Fuwa Fuwa.
Way Off ITG's step rating which is approximately equivalent to a Boo.
Workout Mode Feature from the home versions of DDR where the game tracks playing time and caloric expenditure. This feature led to future fitness-themed games using the DDR pad, including Aerobic Revolution and Diet Channel.
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Konami images used with express permission of Konami Corporation.