Video Game / Jubeat

Online matching...

jubeat (which, for the record, is actually pronounced u-beat, not Jew-beat) is one of the newer members of the Bemani family of Rhythm Games produced by Konami. In this game, you simply hit buttons (which are transparent and overlaid atop a monitor, it's not a touch screen as some people think) on a square 4x4 grid to a chosen song when the indicators tell you to do so. In short, it's musical Whack-A-Mole. As is the case in other Bemani games, it looks easy, but can get fairly difficult once you get up to the harder difficulties and songs.

jubeat has proven quite popular, popular enough to gain sequels, becoming a mainstay in the BEMANI lineup. There's also an iOS port (for iPhone, iPad, and the like), jubeat plus, which has been supported by DLC. Impressively, it's also gotten an international release as Jukebeat (which has its own DLC packs as well, but with more American music, of course).

    Games in the series 
Arcade versions (Non-China Asia)
  • jubeat (2008)
    • Received location tests in the US and Europe as UBeat and jukebeat, but official releases never happened.
  • jubeat ripples (2009; APPEND ver.: 2010)
  • jubeat knit (2010; APPEND ver.: 2011)
  • jubeat copious (2011; APPEND ver.: 2012)
  • jubeat saucer (2012)
    • Notoriously, unlike every other BEMANI game, saucer deleted songs through online updates, though it occasionally brought back deleted songs. As of February 1, 2014, most previously-deleted songs were restorednote .
    • jubeat saucer fulfill (2014)
      • Does not have the "song swap" system of saucer.
      • First jubeat game with an extra stage system.
      • Due to tax hikes in Japan, the cost for a normal credit of fulfill as of April 2014 was raised from 100 to 120 yen, which can only be done by using Konami's PASELI currency system. Players who use 100-yen coins can still enjoy all songs and charts, but won't get access to special features that boost unlock progress and provide easier access to extra stages.
  • jubeat prop (2015)
    • Introduces hold notes.
  • jubeat Qubell (2016)
  • jubeat clan (2017) — current version

Arcade versions (China)
  • 乐动魔方 / jubeat (2010)
  • 乐动魔方 2代 / jubeat 2 (2011)
  • 乐动魔方 全国对战版 / jubeat National Versus Version (2012)

Gambling versions
  • Beat Square (2016)

Consumer versions
  • jubeat plus (iOS (Japan), 2010; Xperia (Japan), 2012)
  • jukebeat (iOS (International), 2011)
    • Trails the Japanese versions in updates, and features different licensed songs.

Single person play.

First tune. Ready...GO.

  • all lowercase letters: All of the titles in the series (except jubeat Qubell), not counting the "APPEND" versions.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • Following a mid-December patch to Qubell, if a Key Qube (stage objective) required the clearing of a particular song or chart, accessing the Key Qube list from the "Concierge" and selecting any such Qube would immediately highlight the required song or chart for selection. This greatly eased finding the particular song or chart.
    • Unlocking older songs became significantly easier in clan. First, online matching now matches you with players playing songs with similar song lengths, instead of the exact same song. With the Song Conduction mechanic retained from Qubell, if any of them are playing an older song you don't have unlocked, you get that song unlocked too. Secondly, the version's unlock tree has a section dedicated to unlocking older songs, where up to nine random locked songs from previous versions will be made available to unlock with relatively limited grinding - and you can choose which ones to unlock first.
    • Since a late March patch to clan, the exchange rate for producing higher grade "omiyage" was dramatically reduced, with the requirements to produce silver, gold and rainbow grade "omiyage" cut to half, one-fifth and one-tenth their previous exchange rates respectively. Furthermore, lower grade multi-coloured "omiyage" could now be exchanged for higher grade multi-coloured "omiyage".
  • April Fools' Day:
    • On April 1st, 2013, the jubeat e-amusement website was redecorated to promote "Wow Wow VENUS", with the unlock condition for the song requiring tons of Level Grinding, and reverted the day after. Subverted when the song became available for real the following day, as a simpler "Only Now" unlocknote .
    • For 2018, the official Twitter account "announced" a pocket LCD version of jubeat.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing:
    • Despite being very lighthearted and happy songs, "concon" and "yellow head joe" are definitely not for beginner players, even on the Basic difficulty level.
    • Qubell presents "負けないよ… -Runners High-", a licensed song. Normally, licensed songs that aren't Touhou remixes or crossovers from non-Bemani music game franchises aren't generally that hard for their level, even if they're level 10. This song falls into neither of these categories, but packs a level 10 Extreme chart with patterns rivaling those of top-tier level 10s.
    • Also in Qubell, Megalara Garuda, the unlockable song in the final stage of Dig Rush FINAL QUBE, is a song worthy of Nintendo Hard, especially if you are playing in the RISKY UNLOCK CHALLENGE! That's because all of its charts are LEVEL 10 (even BASIC). If you are unlocking this song in the final unlock challenge, good luck on completing that chart because of the very strict 25ms hard mode timing, almost close to IIDX's timing, and a strict pass/fail grade of 980,000 to unlock the song. The challenge is somewhat averted though, since you can get it if the matching player has the song, similar on how Dig Garnet unlock charts work.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory:
    • Box Mode, which gives you the same number of songs as the standard mode, but usually costs more credits or PASELI to play and pays out three times as many Tune Points.
    • In jubeat Qubell, when digging Garnet cubes to unlock old songs, you could use the "dig dig radar" once every day to specify an older song you want to unlock in the course of your digging. Use of this feature requires a paid e-amusement subscription.
  • Creepy Cool Crosses: A very notable example in the JOMANDA's ex chart. A surprising seven-panel note in the shape of a cross once in the middle and another one near the end, which makes everyone attempting to play it at first sight to fail the chart. And even if you pass, it still is a challenge to full combo.
  • Do Well, but Not Perfect: Discouraged by the pass/fail system in this game; see Life Meter below.
  • Earn Your Fun:
    • Level Grinding is forced to unlock most of any particular version's new Konami original songs. Trying to unlock older non-default songs, especially those not within the "unlock tree" of that particular version, is often exponentially more difficult - either you grind until the game eventually gives you one, or you'll have to be at the mercy of Matching Select and pray that the game matches with someone who has a song you're looking for (and not another beginner playing another licensed song). The difficulty in unlocking old songs was partially alleviated in clan through the expanded Matching Select system (for getting old songs through Song Conduction) and "jubeat shop" (for directly unlocking old songs), but there is still a substantial luck and grinding element in both.note 
    • In earlier versions and in select events of jubeat Qubell, one even had to grind for markers (the note animations contained within the squares), and background colors. Some unlock requirements in earlier versions, however, were much more difficult.
    • Stage 5 of the New Generation -natsu no ryuusei festa- event in Qubell was a pain. Players had to complete six of eight objectives in order to access the unlock challenge and unlock Triple Counter, the boss song of the event. While four were easy (clear the previous four stages' new songs, on any difficulty, with an A or above), the remaining four consisted of two rather difficult objectives (10 SS grades on level 10 charts, 15 full combos) and two credit-eating ones (Clear 40 level 3 and above charts, 40 clears with an A grade or above)
    • Dig Rush FINAL in Qubell up-ed the ante further. The previous five phases of the Dig Rush event were crossovers with specified BEMANI games, each a three-stage "dig", giving a brand-new song when fully completed. As part of Dig Rush FINAL, all five previous Dig Rush phases were revived. The third stage of Dig Rush FINAL had five objectives, all of which were mandatory to proceed to the Unlock Challenge and attain the stage's boss song. Each objective was to clear, with at least an A grade, each of the the five brand-new songs. Unless the player could match with someone who already had these songs, failure to complete (or worse, start on) any of the previous phases led to another long grind!
  • Easy-Mode Mockery: In saucer fulfill, the only modes you can play with coins (rather than PASELI) under default price settings are LIGHT modes, which do not let you play Extreme charts.
  • Freemium: The iOS and Android versions themselves are free, but come with only 3 songs. You have to pay for song packs to get more songs.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: To make a complicated story short, the Extreme chart for the GITADORA version of "Elemental Creation" has 1,031 notes, but the end-of-stage bonus at the time was done in a way that cannot handle more than 1,024 notes, so getting the full 100,000 bonus required a near-perfect performance. This was later fixed.
  • Gimmick Level:
    • "STELLAR WIND" on Extreme difficulty is the Advanced chart, turned 90 degrees and one less note. The kicker is that the Advanced chart is well-designed for dividing up notes between the left and right hands, but turning the chart completely messes with that.
    • "Sky High" has an Advanced chart that is designed to mimic the note patterns of its BeatStream BEAST chart within the constraints of Jubeat.
  • Harder Than Hard: The difficulty levels are labeled as Basic, Advanced, and then Extreme.
  • Hope Spot: Can be the result of the end-of-stage bonus. You finish the song with somewhere around 600,000-699,999 points, and the end-of-stage bonus (if any; it's possible to have no bonus at all) comes up just short of 700,000, resulting in stage failure.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: "[E]". In Japanese, the word for brackets is "kakko", so the song is pronounced "kakko-E". As in "kakkoii", which means "cool", hence the "kakkoii" sample heard throughout the song.
  • Instant-Win Condition: Sort of. Once you pass 700,000 points during the song, you're guaranteed to clear it, even if you decide to goof off or idle for the remainder of the song.
  • Joke Level: "Pen-Pineapple-Apple-Pen", in addition to its catchy memetic properties, is also the shortest song in jubeat, at only 45 seconds.
  • Later Installment Weirdness: Online matching used to match you up with other players playing the same song, which is to be expected...but then jubeat clan changes matching so that the people you match with may not be playing the same song.
  • Life Meter: To clear a song, you simply need 700,000 points out of 1 million. This averts the score-pass/fail dissonance seen in other Bemani games, though it does mean that an all-Good run (which would give you a score of 460K) will result in stage failure.
    "Full combo! Result: FAILED."
  • Long Song, Short Scene: "Senbonzakura" appeared in jubeat saucer for all of 20 days before being permanently removed from arcade jubeat games. Fortunately, it lives on in the consumer-exclusive jubeat plus.
    • As of clan, "Senbonzakura" has been revived.
  • Lucky Charms Title: The song titles "Love♥km", "TWINKLE♡HEART", and "TRUE♡LOVE"
  • Mercy Mode: If you're playing without a card and fail your first stage, you'll be "Saved" and allowed to advance to the next stage. In a multiplayer game, if at least one player clears the song, everyone moves to the next stage regardless of score.
    • If you failed a song with Hazard mode turned on, it will automatically be saved and allowed to advance to the next stage, regardless of the Hazard mode used, in a similar fashion of Beatmania IIDX.
  • Mission-Pack Sequel: Every jubeat game has pretty much been one so far, as with most music games. Additionally, recent versions have had "Append" updates, which (in a similar fashion to the old "Plus" versions of DDR 3rd and 4th Mix) add a fairly large pack of additional songs to the game.
    • Averted with jukebeat / jubeat plus, which simply use DLC packs.
  • Non-Indicative Difficulty: Higher level hold note charts since Qubell. Most hold note charts introduced on the release of prop were alternative "[2]" charts for certain songs, where the hold notes did create a new challenge by restricting hand movement. All but one set of "[2]" chartsnote  released since do indeed derive extra difficulty from hold notes. Some songs only have hold note charts, and all those released in prop also derived extra difficulty from hold notes. However, since the release of Qubell, there are now certain songs that only have hold note charts, but merely contain a very limited number of hold notes, placed to fill less intense segments with few, if any notes to hit while holding them down (e.g. "aleatrik" and "Hunny Bunny" on Extreme). At the same time, there are some new songs which only have hold note charts and heavily use those hold notes to restrict hand movement in certain sequences (e.g. "Invisible Border" on Extreme), While you are told whether the chart has hold notes or not, you're not told whether the chart will use hold notes sparingly or as a layer of significant extra difficulty.
  • Number of the Beast: Bad Apple!!! in Level 8 Extreme has 666 notes.
  • One Steve Limit:
    • Averted on saucer by the presence of "Vermilion", a new remo-con song, which is not to be confused with "Vermillion" (with two L's), the closing theme of beatmania IIDX 17. Oddly enough, it was added as a crossover on IIDX 24.
    • An even bigger aversion arrived on clan with "Paranoia" (with an upper case "P"), a new Touhou remix not to be confused with "paranoia" (with a lower case "P"), a licensed Vocaloid song that arrived with Qubell.
  • Play Every Day: clan introduces the "monthly daily bonus" system, where you are rewarded with high-grade "omiyage" (the version's unlock currency) for every day that you play the game in a month. Until a patch in late March 2018 that drastically cut down the requirements, these high-grade "omiyage" were nearly impossible to produce the normal way note , and were virtually essential to progressing the unlock tree. Even after that patch, they are still very useful.
  • Public Domain Soundtrack: One new song from each new installment has always been an in-house arrangement of a classical piece; 天国と地獄, ウィリアム・テル序曲, Swan Lake, トルコ行進曲, Diavolo and 運命.
  • Random Drop:
    • jubeat prop's Weekly Bonus Music system worked like this. By playing the game multiple times to fill up the Bonus Tune gauge, one will be able to play an extra song (Bonus Tune) after the Final Tune. On the Bonus Tune song selection screen, a random song that hasn't been unlocked before will be selectable, and playing it will permanently unlock the song.
    • jubeat Qubell ups the randomness with its dig dig Qubell unlock system. Choosing to dig Garnet cubes will present you with a stack of 125 cubes to dig through. Five randomly positioned cubes in the pile will unlock a random old song each, and you won't know which cubes unlock songs until you hit them!
  • Required Spinoff Crossover: As has been a tradition, many Bemani songs have crossed in and out of jubeat. It also got linking events with the recent beatmania games for cross-unlocking action!
    • 凛として咲く花の如く (Nadeshiko Rock) and SigSig, famous for being on a very large amount of Bemani titles, were introduced to Jubeat in the very first installment.
    • In a notable inversion, "FLOWER" originated as a mutual song shared between jubeat knit APPEND and REFLEC BEAT, but has since been transplanted to older Bemani games; beatmania IIDX, pop'n music, Dance Dance Revolution, and even SOUND VOLTEX BOOTH and GuitarFreaks & DrumMania as new arrangements.
    • ripples also had High and Mighty Color's cover of Hot Limit; although its a different cover, you probably remember a more infamous version which appeared on DDR 5th Mix
    • Lo and behold, V has finally arrived.
    • The recent Dig Rush Qube of Qubell crosses over a handful of songs from DDR, GITADORA and etc.
  • Scoring Points: Each chart has a maximum score of 1 million points, with 700,000 being the requirement to clear the song:
    • Each note being worth a fixed amount that is inversely proportional to the number of notes in the chart; getting a Perfect yields the full note value, getting a Good yields a small fraction of it, and any judgement below is worth none. Points from notes total up to 900,000.
    • As you play, a bonus builds up, up to a maximum of 100,000 points. Getting Perfects raises the bonus the most, and getting Goods raises it by a lower amount. Earlies, Lates, and Misses will take away from the bonus, although the bonus cannot go below 0. This means that playing well towards the end of the song is more important than playing well in earlier parts. The bonus you have so far is represented by the background; a completely black/gray background means you have no bonus, while a fully-colored background means you have the full 100,000-point bonus. If you have less than 700,000 points but more than 600,000 at the end of the song, it is possible to be pushed into passing range by the bonus points.
  • Series Mascot: Not the whole series, but jubeat knit's mascot is a cube head called "The Concierge".
  • Socialization Bonus:
    • Through "local matching" (linked play between 2-4 machines in the same arcade), you can play songs that you haven't unlocked, but another player has.
    • If you fail a song in an online match, but at least one other player in the same match clears it, you'll be "saved" and still allowed to progress to the next song.
    • On the other extreme, if a player in an online match gets a Full Combo or Excellent, all other players will receive a significant boost to their Bonus Tune points, making it easier for them to access the Bonus Tune.
    • In some earlier versions, Qubell and clan, local or online matching with a player who is playing a song you haven't unlocked would unlock them for you as well. Qubell took this to the extreme with "Qubellic Prism", which was a song only unlockable through matching with someone who has the song.note  Qubell also allows you to obtain "title parts" (but not the full "titles") in this manner.
    • Selecting "Matching Select" (instead of an actual song) will cause the game to attempt to match you into an online multiplayer session, including those where the song chosen is not unlocked for the player. Even if no multiplayer session is found, there is a chance that the game may still pick a song that the player has not unlocked.
  • Splash Damage: On malfunctioning cabinets, hitting one panel may cause adjacent panels to set off as well. This is a very bad thing, as it can lead to unnecessary Goods or even misses.
  • Surprisingly Good English: The various tutorials feature the announcer explaining the game mechanics in fluent English.
  • Theme Naming: Several of DJ YOSHITAKA's songs are plant-named, including "ALBIDA", "JOMANDA", and "FLOWER".
  • Uncommon Time: Shining Wizard has a very inconsistent time signature. For roughly the first half of the song, it switches between 4/4 and 7/8 every measure. Then it remains at 4/4 for a few measures, before alternating between that and 6/8, and then near the end it returns to alternating between 4/4 and 7/8.