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Trivia / BEMANI

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  • Some of the BEMANI musicians play their own games, with varying degrees of success. REFLEC BEAT sound director DJ YOSHITAKA has shown himself to be able to play his own game very well, and DJ TOTTO is a Kaidennote -level beatmania IIDX player. Meanwhile, pop'n music sound director wac is somewhat notorious for his appearance at JAEPO 2013, where he shows that his pop'n abilities...have a lot of room for improvement. (To be fair, he did play Ongaku [EX], one of the hardest charts in the entire pop'n series.)
  • Bad Export for You:
    • Arcade BEMANI games are released not only in Japan, but also other Asian regions, such as South Korea, Taiwan, and Southeast Asia. Unfortunately, only the Korean versions are translated; players in other non-Japanese eAMUSEMENT regions don't get translated versions. The sole exception is Dance Dance Revolution, which gets a decent amount of English-language arcade releases here and there.
    • BEMANI cabinets at Round 1 US locations are Japan-region, and thus come with all the perks of playing with PASELI and drawbacks of playing with regular credits. The problem: no Round 1 location in the US has PASELI enabled, meaning that, among other things, you can't get extra stages in IIDX or anti-Game Over insurance on games that offer it.
  • Cash-Cow Franchise: BEMANI games routinely top "highest-grossing arcade game" charts in Japan, solidifying them as Konami Amusement's biggest franchise.
  • Denial of Digital Distribution:
    • A little of Kanako Hoshino's music is on Spotify and iTunes, but EIGHT ELEMENTS OF THE STAR, EIGHT ELEMENTS OF THE STAR ~ANOTHER SENSE~, Prism, Starry ~the way to the SIRIUS~, Articulation and Sky Arium are missing.
    • TËЯRA. Their first album RЁVOLUTIФN was not released digitally at all. Their second album ЁVOLUTIФN was... but not for Europe.
  • Dueling Games: With Performai, another set of rhythm games for arcades that has gained a foothold in the market. Other game developers have tried their hand at arcade rhythm games but so far only Sega has been able to really approach Konami in terms of commercial success in that genre.
  • Executive Meddling: Though not hit as badly during the Konami scandals that began in 2015 compared to Konami Digital Entertainment's (the branch in charge of console, PC, and mobile Konami games) properties, BEMANI still suffers from shades of this:
    • Inverted with "Brain Power" being removed from Sound Voltex and MÚSECA: it was NOMA and not Konami who chose to not have the song's contract renewed. Played straight in the reasoning though: The contract gave Konami the rights to "Brain Power", and as such it could not be used in non-Konami media or gigs, not even NOMA's own, without having to ask Konami, and NOMA wanted to be able to have control over his own song. That said, NOMA has stated that it's not the permanent end to "Brain Power" as a music game track; there's the option to modify and renew the contract at a future date. In fact, right after it vanished from Sound Voltex, it re-appeared on the non-Bemani music game Neon FM (which also ascended the meme associated with the song) and then spread to a wide variety of other rhythm games such as Groove Coaster, the Performai trilogy, Muse Dash, and Cytus II.
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    • In October 2017, it was increasingly speculated that the Bemani division — specifically, the staff musicians — was facing internal issues not unlike what had happened to Hideo Kojima prior to the release of Metal Gear Solid V. A telltale sign that something was amiss was the sudden removal of references to artists from promotional material and artwork in certain locations. Then, the song information page for "GERBERA" on the Sound Voltex website removed the reference to TAG and credited it to "BEMANI Sound Team" instead. Several new songs added to various Bemani games (including the aforementioned "GERBERA") in early-November were similarly credited to "BEMANI Sound Team" rather than an individual artist. However, one of them — "Mychronicle" on Pop'n music — has an Easter Egg keysound at the end with various voices saying "Des-ROW!"; it's not known if this was in the song from the beginning or was snuck in as a subtle acknowledgement that something was wrong. As of 12/20/2017, it seems that both parties have come to a compromise. While the Bemani Sound Team labeling is still in effect, this is now followed by the actual in-house artist. Example This unfortunately has the side effect of breaking the Willing Suspension of Disbelief when it comes to Kayfabe Music by BEMANI Sound Team; for example, the artist of "ピアノ独奏無言歌 "灰燼"" is credited as BEMANI Sound Team "Virkato Wakhmaninov" (Virkato being an alias of Jun Wakita that he's used since 2004), despite the fact that the fictional Virkato died in 1974, 23 years before the very first BEMANI game.
  • Fanwork Ban: From 2011 to 2015, the online service Programmed World allowed players on current BEMANI cabinets in countries not served by the eAMUSEMENT network to enjoy functions and features that are otherwise exclusive to eA-connected machines. Unfortunately, in March 2015, Konami sent a cease-and-desist order to arcades running PW-connected cabinets as well as the PW staff, forcing the service to go offline. It is speculated that Konami is planning to expand eAMUSEMENT service to outside of Eastern and Southeast Asia, as on the same weekend, the eAMUSEMENT website announced plans to provide global website service to players outside of Japan, although whether this will actually lead to global eAMUSEMENT service has yet to be seen. (Hint: it won't... that is until DDR A came along in 2016.)
  • Genre Turning Point: This series, particularly the early games like beatmania and DDR, set a lot of standards for the genre, particularly in arcades. Songs are tweaked to be about 2 minutes each, there's three stages per credit by default, there's a "combo" counter (i.e. how many notes since you last missed one). Parappa The Rapper may have invented the Rhythm Game, but Konami then took it and set the gold standard for it.
  • He Also Did:
    • Naoki Maeda:
      • ...once went by another identity, Ensoniq Maeda, and composed music for other Konami games, such as Salamander 2.
      • ...was the producer of the CROSS×BEATS series and is currently one of the executive staff for Sevens Code.
    • kors k composed music for DJMAX, under the alias Oriental ST8.
    • Tatsh, best known for "Xepher", has produced songs for Cytus, under the alias Persona. In Taito's music games Music GunGun! and Groove Coaster, he produces songs under the alias Xeami, although he also makes songs under his usual "Tatsh" handle.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: At least DanceEvolution Arcade gets offline kits. As for Miraidagakki? There's no legal way to play it anymore, and BeatStream fell to the same fate on September 1, 2017.
  • Name's the Same: There's two artists in BEMANI named Hiroshi Watanabe. One goes by DJ FX, nite system, QUADRA, and a few other aliases, and is best known for his compositions for early beatmania games. The other goes by the name cranky and is known for a variety of tracks produced for beatmania simulators, including the constantly-crossed-over "conflict".
  • No Export for You:
    • If you were to make a pie chart of the number of BEMANI games released in Eastern and Southeast Asia and the number of BEMANI games released overseas, the result would be Pac-Man with a nearly-closed mouth. It got worse in 2012 when Konami started requiring BEMANI games to be connected to the eAMUSEMENT network, as well as making their games lease-only as part of the eAMUSEMENT Participation program rather than outright purchasable. Because of the often Asia-only nature of BEMANI games, many people in the West are unaware that Konami does still make BEMANI games.
    • "Senbonzakura" is available on five different BEMANI games...but that number drops to one if you're playing in South Korea.
  • No Port For You: There was a long period of time (from about 2009 or so) when the usual subjects of console BEMANI ports stopped receiving new console versions, with the next half-decade and then some only seeing mobile ports like those of jubeat, Reflec Beat and the occasional mobile spinoff of GITADORA, DanceDanceRevolution, and pop'n music that don't quite play like their arcade counterparts. Eventually, Konami started producing PC ports of IIDX, pop'n, DDR, Sound Voltex, and Nostalgia.
  • Promoted Fanboy:
    • Porter Robinson is a fan of the series and drew some of his inspirations from BEMANI musicians. A few of his tracks would later make it into the series, most notably "Particle Arts".
    • Akira Complex draws inspiration from several BEMANI musicians as well, most notably kors k, L.E.D., and Sota Fujimori, and would later contribute songs to the series.
  • Uncredited Role:
    • In late 2017, multiple original songs starting being credited to "BEMANI Sound Team" rather than the actual contributing artist. This was later sorta-reversed, with artists now being credited as "BEMANI Sound Team '(artist)'".
    • In early 2018, the same treatment was applied to the visual arts team as well, creding their contributions to "BEMANI Designers".
  • Vaporware:
    • RAP FREAKS is only known to have had one location test, then quietly disappeared.
    • Otoiroha was shown at JAEPO 2016 but ended up being quietly cancelled nearly a year later.
    • A game called variously Rizminance or Saikyo DJ Anikurage had two location tests, and then mysteriously went missing. Player feedback wasn't exactly positive. In an exaggerated example, this game seems to have been so Vaporware that it caused the game that it was meant to be transplanted over - Reflec Beat - to be somewhat alive again, receiving its first completely new content in over a year.
  • The Wiki Rule:
    • BEMANIWiki, for Japanese speakers.
    • RemyWiki, which originally started as an English-language beatmania IIDX wiki (it is a sister to the forum and score tracking site Solid State Squad, formerly VJ Army), but has since expanded into a general English-language Bemani resource covering most active franchises. The name comes from its founder, Dan "Remy" Dickinson.