To dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free

So I got Dance! Online up and running, and it’s a bit of a disappointment really. The awesome power of 800×600 graphics means it either runs in a tiny window, or extreme stretch-o-vision fullscreen on a widescreen monitor. Not a major problem, I’ve never had time to pay attention to graphics in any DDR-type game, being too busy staring intently at arrows moving up the screen, but still. Then there’s the interface which, presumably being aimed at those crazy kids rather than gaming codgers, uses plenty of bright colours n’ pictures n’ stuff, rather than those laughably outdated “word” things that, y’know, convey meaning n’ stuff. It’s also not terribly responsive, but hey, it’s a beta, and none of that stuff would matter too much if the “dancing” itself was up to much. Sadly there’s a bit of a problem there; firstly the game, theoretically, supports dance pads, but doesn’t let you re-map the buttons, and it obviously wasn’t happy with whatever my PlayStation adapter was sending out. A joystick to keyboard emulator lets you play on the keyboard setting, but even on the easiest levels I found the keyboard steps pretty challenging (I’d hope the pad versions are a bit simpler… either that, or I’m just hopeless at dance games).

Anyway, if nothing else it made me dust off the dance pad and plug it back in, so while it was there I fired up Stepmania, and cavorted in a peculiar manner to, amongst other things, the Fight! Kikkoman song.