How To Make a Fake Arcade Test Song Quickly

Beatmania IIDX is one of those interesting arcade games because people can obsess over the content of the game without having to play it. You can listen to the music all day long and make judgements about good artists, the merit of various versions of the game based entirely on song list, etc. This also lends itself to a lot of excitement when a new version is announced – as there will be another 50 songs or so going in everyone’s collection.
With the quasi-confirmation of Beatmania IIDX 11th Style RED today, the market has once again opened for fake location test songs. Popularized around 8th Style, the practice of making fakey location test songs is great for duping people who believe everything they read (or hear) on the internet.
Making a fake song isn’t hard, but there are subtleties to it. Let’s walk through making a fake song.
A microphone, preferably low quality.
A IIDX controller. Non-ASC is fine.
A source song, ranging between 1 and 2 minutes. It helps if it’s in a standard IIDX-ish genre (any sort of electronic music, fringes of hiphop, japanese vocals, eurobeat), but it helps even more if it’s obscure and not from an existing Bemani artist or game. Much easier to pick up on.
Some tatsujin or gameplay movies – one is good, two is better. Try to get different Bemani games.
Some program that will record audio off your microphone.
1) The worse it sounds, the better it is.
2) By “worse”, I mean you can’t actually hear it. I’m not talking bullshit noise.
3) You are looking for three main components: Your alleged song, your background noise, and your key press sounds.
Source song – “Him and Me” by Porn Theatre Ushers, off Mix Master Mike’s Spin Psycle.
Background noise – dj RYRY’s Murmur Twins [a] Tatsujin video, as well as a Pop’n video from a friend of him playing 100 Sec. Cooking Battle.
Me banging on my IIDX controller
dj BTNS with the random ambient noise.
1) First, balance your audio. You want the song to be slightly louder than your background noise, but you don’t want it to stick out over top of everything. Remember, at actual location tests, you have to sneak your recording equipment in because Konami is always watching. It’s supposed to sound muffled.
2) Move your microphone so it’s right between your computer speakers. I was using my iSight, and just dangled it off the top of my monitor. This had the added benefit of adding fan noise from my iMac and giving it a nice low-level hum.
3) Fire up your recording program. Make sure your audio capture settings are LOW – 11000 Hz is good, 22k is also acceptable. Stereo vs. mono is not really important.
4) Start recording.
5) Start your background noises (and have them on loop, just in case you run over).
6) Start your song, and immediately try your best to mash the keys along with the song. This works best if you’ve never heard the song enough to recognize it, which in our case here, is completely true.
7) When the song ends, stop recording and chop out the dead air. Don’t bother fading the audio in or out, this is supposed to be crappy.
8) Convert it to MP3 however you’d like – but encode at 128 so you lose a little more quality.
9) Nice stylistic touch – make the ID3 tags absolutely horrendous. Type in all capital letters. Misspell things. Leave fields blank. Change the file name to those annoyingly long ALL_CAPS_WITH_UNDERSCORES_INSTEAD_OF_SPACES style.
10) Upload to some free webspace, preferably with a .jp domain. Point a few friends to it, and let them start the chain of downloading.
Look for more great fake 11th Style songs coming your way soon. Not from me though. Never from me.