Saturday, July 4, 2009

Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA Song Creation Guide

With the release of Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA in Japan this week, a good deal of fans either have their UMDs or are still waiting for them to arrive. The lucky people currently playing the game are probably wondering about one of key features that will keep this game alive in communities for likely years to come: creating custom note-tracks for songs.

Those of you interested in my updated review (and an explanation of the mechanics) of the game, see this post here.

Before I get to explaining how the custom songs work, let me share a few examples with you. There are many other good songs available at the Project DIVA Wiki, but I figured I'd make it convenient for some of you who are looking for some of the hot titles I've listed below. The authors of each of these note-tracks are credited in the files:

Black Rock Shooter
Meltdown (Original)
Double Lariat
Luka Luka Night Fever
Clover Club
Rainbow Girl
Konbini (コンビニ)
Poppippo (ぽっぴっぽー)
Mobile Sensation (モバイリ:センセーション)

Cagayaki GIRLS! (K-ON! OP) (Hard)
Don't Say Lazy (K-ON! ED)
Don't Say Lazy (Very Hard)
Super Driver (Haruhi Suzumiya OP 2)

NOTE: Treat each of these as a PSP save file. It is important to note as well that you cannot rename them. You can, however, open them in the editor and re-save them to different 'slots'. Project DIVA has alotted 90 slots (00-89) for custom songs. You must also have MP3s of each of the songs listed above. Another cool feature to note as that different versions of the same song will work for most note-tracks. You can essentially play the same song by whichever Vocaloid you choose using the same note-track. Vocaloid songs can be obtained most commonly from here: NicoSound. You will need the URL of a song's Nico Nico Douga video.

Navigating the menu:

This is the option you'll want from the main menu:

Selecting it will take you here:

From there you'll have a few options. The function of each is as follows:
-Create a note-track.
-Edit a note-track.
-Play a saved note-track.
-Watch the PV of a note track.
-Quick-Play PV (Goes through all the options to create a PV quickly)

Playing User Songs:

I'll get to the create screen momentarily. Since the other options work in virtually the same way, I'll explain those first. When choosing to play a saved note-track, first you'll have to choose it from your memory stick (these are placed in MS0:/PSP/SAVEDATA), then you'll have to choose a song to link to the note-track. You'll be presented with a list of songs on the UMD at first, but pressing R will allow you to browse your memory stick for songs.

If you want to play other people's shared note-tracks, you might have to do some shuffling around of the save files. Since you can't rename the save files, there might be conflicts. For example, you can't have two save files in the slot designated for "ULJM05472EDIT00". What needs to be done is open the song up in the Edit Song menu, press Start, and choose the first option (on the next screen as well) to re-save the song to an empty slot. This fixes save file naming conflicts.

The Creation Screen:

This is what the creation screen looks like:

The interface is arranged in columns and rows. The columns are bars to the song, these are the rows:
1. Changing the BPM and setting the notes. The bars at the bottom represent the standard beat of 4/4 (Which can be changed to 3/4, 2/4).
2. Setting the path of the notes. Selecting the screen lets you place them in pre-set orders using left/right, pressing circle lets you set each note's placement individually.
3. PV Options, shown below:

The above nodes work as follows:
-Character Visibility (On or off)
-Facial Expressions
-Dance Moves
-Environment (Change the map here)
-Camera Options (Time, Angle, Pan, Rotation, Play)

Editing Songs:

If you press Start on the creation screen (explained above) you'll be presented with this menu (split into two images):

This is for editing your own songs, editing other people's note-tracks for the reason of re-saving them to a different slot, or editing the start time of the song to work with your MP3 (which is very valuable since people will likely be using different MP3s). My translations are as follows:

-Save (Save, Delete, Title, Author)
-Change Song
-Change Costume
-Change Environment
-Change Dance
-Change Beat Sound (Default is tambourine)
-Real-Time Recording (Lets you tap the notes in real-time)
-Note-Path Editing
-Starting Time of the Song (VERY valuable to know this in case your MP3 is off)
-Quit to Previous Screen
-Quit to Main Menu

I really hope this was all a help. I'll be updating my blog later this week when my own UMD with the Nendoroid actually arrives!

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