In the Groove (video game)

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In the Groove
In the Groove cover artwork (PlayStation 2).png
PlayStation 2 cover artwork for In the Groove.
Developer(s) Roxor Games
Publisher(s) RedOctane
Series In the Groove
Engine StepMania
Platform(s) Arcade, Mac OS X, PlayStation 2, Windows
Release
  • NA: August 30, 2004
    (arcade)
  • NA: June 17, 2005
    (PlayStation 2)
  • EU: August 21, 2006
  • NA: August 21, 2006
    (Mac OS X, Windows)
Genre(s) Music, Exercise
Mode(s) Single-player, Multiplayer
Cabinet Upgrade kit for Dance Dance Revolution cabinets.
Arcade system Boxor

In the Groove (abbreviated ITG) is a rhythm game published by RedOctane and developed by Roxor Games, and is the first game in the In the Groove series.[1] The game was shown in an official beta-testing preview on July 9, 2004[2][3][4][5], and was officially released in arcades around August 30, 2004.[6][citation needed]

Gameplay[edit]

The game mechanics of In the Groove are similar to Konami's Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) series.[7] The game involves the player moving his or her feet to a set pattern, stepping in time to the general rhythm or beat of a song. During normal gameplay, arrows scroll upwards from the bottom of the screen and pass over flashing stationary arrows (referred to as the "guide arrows" or "receptors"). Similar to DDR's gameplay, there are 4 flashing stationary arrows. When the scrolling arrows overlap the stationary ones, the player must step on the corresponding arrows on the dance platform. Longer arrows referred to as "holds" must be held down for their entire length for them to count. Successfully hitting the arrows in time with the music increases the amount of health on the life bar, while failure to do so decreases it. If the life bar is fully depleted during gameplay, the player fails the song (unless the fail at end of song setting is on), usually resulting in a game over. Otherwise, the player is taken to the Results Screen, which rates the player's performance with a letter grade and a percentage score, among other statistics. The player may then be given a chance to play again, depending on the settings of the particular machine (the limit is usually 3-5 songs per game).

Stepcharts on In the Groove are a predefined sequence of arrows and other items mapped to the timing of a song, and they vary depending on the song's difficulty. Stepcharts can sometimes contain 3 or 4 arrow combinations (supposed to be hit with hands but usually hit by placing one or two feet between two arrows making them hit both). Stepcharts can also contain Mines. If a player is on an arrow when a mine passes through the step zone for that arrow, it will explode and health on the life bar will be lost.[8]

Modifiers (also referred to as mods)[9] change the display of how arrows and other items in a stepchart work.[9] They include Speed Multipliers (to space out the position of the scrolling arrows so less can be seen at once), Perspective (to change the behavior of how arrows scroll, such as having slower-moving arrows at the top and faster-moving arrows at the bottom), and Note (to change the appearance of how arrows look; some Note options change the color of the arrow depending on the rhythm of the song).[10]

Modes of Gameplay[edit]

In The Groove offers different modes of gameplay, each with different rules on how songs are selected and played.

Dance Mode is the default mode of play. In this mode, a player chooses a number of individual songs to play (the default is three). After the songs are played, the game is over.

Marathon Mode is an extended mode of play. In this mode, a player chooses a predefined configuration of songs that may also have a predefined set of modifiers in order to make the songs more challenging to play. Marathon courses typically have four songs, although some have five songs.

Battle Mode is a specialized "versus" mode of play. Two players (or one player against the computer) play three individual songs of the same difficulty. During the song, successfully executed steps fill up a player's "power bar". When the power bar completely fills, a modifier is applied to the opposing player's side.

Modifiers[edit]

Modifiers (also referred to as mods)[9] change the display of how arrows and other items in a stepchart work.[9]

These are the modifiers that are available in the first game of the In The Groove series. Descriptions are paraphrased or used from an online version of the In The Groove Instruction Manual for PC/Mac[10] and the What is ITG?[9] article by Rhythmatic. Modifiers marked with an asterisk (*) mean that if they are used, scores recorded throughout gameplay do not qualify as high scores[10]:

Modifier name Description Options
Speed Multiplier Adjust the speed of the arrows on-screen relative to a zoomed-in portion of a song's stepchart. Adjust this if you need to space out the arrows so they can be seen better. This will not change the actual playback speed of the song.
  • ×1 - Normal arrow scroll speed. This is the default speed for the game.
  • ×1.5 - Arrows scroll 1.5 times faster than normal.
  • ×2 - Arrows scroll 2 times faster than normal.
  • ×2.5 - Arrows scroll 2.5 times faster than normal.
  • ×3 - Arrows scroll 3 times faster than normal.
  • ×4 - Arrows scroll 4 times faster than normal.
  • ×5 - Arrows scroll 5 times faster than normal.
  • ×6 - Arrows scroll 6 times faster than normal.
  • C Mods (Scroll Constant[9]) - Changes the scroll speed of the arrows to mimic a song. Arrows will auto-adjust speed during tempo changes to keep a constant speed throughout the song, ignoring all BPM changes. The PC version has C450 and C550 included.[11] The PS2 version has C300 and C450 included.[12]
Perspective This changes how the scrolling arrows approach the target arrows.
  • Overhead - Standard arrow scrolling perspective.
  • Hallway - The arrows change perspective as they scroll upwards, starting out in the distance and approaching the foreground.
  • Distant - The perspective is tilted so that it's normal-sized at the bottom and further away at the top.
  • Incoming - Arrows scroll as if they were getting closer to the screen as they reach the top.
  • Space - The opposite of Hallway; the arrows start out in the foreground and move into the distance.
Note (sometimes referred to as Noteskins) This changes the appearance of how arrows look; some Note options change the color of the arrow depending on the rhythm of the song.
  • Metal - Standard arrow style that changes according to the rhythm of the song.
  • Cell/Cel (Cell in PS2 version[13], Cel in PC version[14]) - Cell shaded arrow style that changes according to the rhythm of the song.
  • Flat - Turns all arrows into orange colored arrows regardless of rhythm.
  • Vivid (only present in PC version, unlockable by clearing 60 songs[15]): Metal noteskin, except that the arrows change color as they scroll up.
Scroll This changes how the arrows scroll. With no modifiers turned on, the arrows will scroll upward by default. You can also combine other modifiers with this one.
  • Reverse - Arrows scroll downward and the target bar is placed near the bottom of the screen.
  • Split - Arrows are split up. Left and down target arrows are at the top and the right and up target arrows are at the bottom.
  • Alternate - A combination of Reverse and Normal arrow scrolls. The left and up targets remain at the top of the screen, and those arrows scroll up. The down and right targets are located at the bottom, and the arrows scroll down.
  • Cross - The left and right arrows are at the top of the screen, and the up and down arrows are at the bottom of the screen.
  • Centered - The target bar is located in the center of the screen instead of at the top.
Acceleration This modifier adds sudden speed changes while the arrows move.
  • Accel - The arrows move faster as they approach the target bar.
  • Decel - The arrows slow down as they approach the target bar.
  • Wave - The arrows slow down and speed up at fixed points on their way to the target bar, created a wave-like illusion.
  • Expand - The arrow spacing stretches and compresses in a rhythmic manner as though the speed modifier were increasing and decreasing.
  • Boomerang - The arrows enter the screen from the opposite direction, then slow down, change, and "boomerang" back up to the Target Bar.
  • Bumpy (PC version only[10], modifier is only found automatically inserted in marathon courses in PS2 version[9]) - The arrows appear to "bounce" toward and away from the screen, as if they were progressing over a bumpy terrain.
Effect This modifier adds other effects that are designed to make gameplay more challenging.
  • Drift - The targets do not remain stationary. They move left and right, though they remain vertically aligned with each other. Scrolling arrows are adjusted as well to compensate this motion.
  • Dizzy - The arrows spin around as they scroll up.
  • Mini - The arrows and the target bar are significantly smaller than they are normally, allowing you to see more upcoming arrows.
  • Flip - The arrow columns are flipped. Instead of Left, Down, Up, Right, they are changed to Right, Up, Down, Left. In Double, the leftmost arrow on the screen will be the 2 Player right arrow, and vice versa. This is said to be the hardest modifier in the game.
  • Tornado - The arrows take a helix-like path to the target bar.
  • Float - The targets do not remain in a row; they move up and down, and do not remain synchronized with each other. Scrolling arrows are adjusted as well to compensate this motion.
Fade This adjusts the visibility of the on-screen arrows.
  • Fade In - Arrows do not become visible until reaching the halfway point on the screen. Note that on Marathon courses, there are variations that will cause the arrows to appear later or earlier, depending on the strength. Equivalent to "Sudden" modifier in DDR.[9]
  • Fade Out - Arrow become invisible once they reach the halfway point on the screen. Note that on Marathon courses, there are variations that will cause the arrows to appear later or earlier, depending on the strength. Equivalent to "Hidden" modifier in DDR.[9]
  • Blink - The arrows appear and disappear as they scroll up at a fixed interval.
  • Invisible - The arrows are never visible. Memorization is the key to this modifier. Equivalent to "Stealth" modifier in DDR.[9]
Handicap This changes the stepchart in order to make gameplay of a song easier and more manageable for beginners.
  • No Mines* - Removes all mines.
  • No Holds* - Removes all holds steps.
  • Simple - Removes all steps that do not begin on a solid beat.
  • No Jumps* - Converts all rows that have two or more simultaneous steps to have only one step.
  • No Stretch Jumps*[citation needed] - On Double game mode stepcharts, this converts jumps that do not involve a middle arrow into a 1L+2R jump.
  • No Hands* - Converts all rows that have three or more simultaneous steps to have only two steps.
Turn Changes the stepchart of the song by having arrows trade places with other arrows.
  • Mirror - Rotates the steps 180 degrees. Steps that were up are now down and vica versa. Steps that were right are now left and vica versa.
  • Left - Rotates the steps 90 degrees counter-clockwise. Steps that were up are now left, steps that were left are now down, etc.
  • Right - Rotates the steps 90 degrees clockwise. Steps that were up are now right, steps that were right are now down, etc.
  • Random - Each direction is assigned randomly to a different direction. For example, a particular arrow pattern of "left, left, down, up, right" could become "up, up, down, left, right."
  • Blender - Each arrow is individually reassigned an orientation. For example, a particular arrow pattern of "left, left, down, up, right" could become "up, right, right, left, up."
Insert Steps This modifier adds arrows to the existing stepchart.
  • Stream - Inserts eighth note steps in between existing quarter note steps.
  • Quick - Inserts sixteenth note steps in between existing eighth note steps.
  • Skippy - Adds an extra sixteenth arrow right before a quarter note step, creating a pattern that causes the player to gallop.
  • Echo* - Adds extra eighth note arrow in the same direction after a quarter note.
  • Wide - Adds more random jumps, mostly of adjacent arrows (up + left, up + right, etc).
  • Stomp - All non-hold quarter notes become either up + down jumps or left + right jumps.
Insert Other This modifier adds other kinds of arrows and items to the existing stepchart.
  • Planted* - Convert some existing tap steps to be hold steps. New hold steps require at most one panel to be held at a time.
  • Floored* - Convert some existing tap steps to be hold steps. New hold steps require at most two panels to be held at a time.
  • Twister* - Convert some existing tap steps to be hold steps. New hold steps require at most three panels to be held at a time.
  • Add Mines - Mines are randomly added to the steps in place of other arrows. If a mine is hit, the user's score is decreased.
Hide This modifier hides various score-keeping elements, guides for arrows, and distractions on the screen while playing a song.
  • Hide Targets - The target arrows are removed from the screen.
  • Hide Judgment - The combo counter and the individual step judgments (Fantastic, Excellent, Great, etc.) do not appear on-screen.
  • Hide Background* - The song's background video is blacked out.

There are also special modifiers which are only available in courses (song lists) while playing Marathon Mode or Battle Mode[9][10]:

Modifier name Description
Note (sometimes referred to as Noteskins)
  • Robot: Changes the arrows to look metallic.
Effect
  • Bumpy: The arrows appear to "bounce" toward and away from the screen, as if they were progressing over very bumpy terrain. (PS2 version only[9])
  • Beat: Causes the scrolling arrows to dramatically bounce left and right to the beat.

Song list[edit]

A total of 76 songs were available in the arcade and home versions of In the Groove.

Home versions[edit]

Two home versions of In the Groove were released. The first was released for the PlayStation 2 on June 17, 2005, and was published by RedOctane.[16] The PS2 version contains the Novice mode carried over from In the Groove 2, Liquid Moon as a fully playable track, and 4 songs from the sequel. A PC version was released on August 16, 2006, featuring 3 songs from the now-canceled In the Groove 3[17], widescreen aspect ratio support, and Edit Mode. A patch named Song Pack A was later released adding the songs and theme from In the Groove 2.

In the home version, as the player progresses in the game by clearing a certain amount of songs, more modifiers, marathon courses, and songs are unlocked.[18]

Controversy[edit]

Konami filed a lawsuit against Roxor Games on an infringement of various rights on May 9, 2005 in the Eastern District of Texas[19], a district known for its bias for the plaintiff in patent cases.[20] Additionally, they amended their complaint on July 1, 2005, to include the dance game "MC Groovz Dance Craze" (a game produced by Mad Catz to accompany their 3rd party dance mat)[21]. Konami primarily claims that Roxor has infringed their dancing game patent rights, but also goes on to claim that the refitting of arcade cabinets "has been done in an infringing and unfair way".

On July 10, 2005, however, Konami amended its complaint to include the In The Groove PS2 game and its publisher RedOctane. On July 25, 2005, Roxor Games filed a counterclaim against Konami. In the counterclaim, Roxor denies the claims in Konami's complaint, stating that 'In The Groove' does not violate patent law and that claiming that Konami has engaged in unfair competition.

However, the lawsuit ultimately ended in a settlement. On October 18, 2006, Roxor announced that Konami had acquired the intellectual property rights to the In the Groove series as part of the settlement to this litigation. The musicians and developers of the game would later go on to create Pump it Up Pro, a spinoff of the Pump it Up series featuring music and features from ITG.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "In The Groove - Videogame by Roxor Games". www.arcade-museum.com. Retrieved 2016-01-25. 
  2. ^ "In the Groove (Arcade) - The Cutting Room Floor". tcrf.net. Retrieved 2017-08-09. 
  3. ^ dasbacon (2006-12-23), In The Groove Pre Beta, retrieved 2017-08-09 
  4. ^ "Index of ./archive/In The Groove/Events/In the Groove - Video Pack /". Rhythmatic. Retrieved 2017-08-09. 
  5. ^ dasbacon (2004-07-09). "In the Groove - Video Pack #1 - 07-09-04 - iNFO.txt". Rhythmatic. Retrieved 2017-08-08. 
  6. ^ "In The Groove - Videogame by Roxor Games". The International Arcade Museum. Retrieved 2017-08-09. 
  7. ^ "In the Groove Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 2016-01-25. 
  8. ^ Lewis, Ed. "In the Groove". IGN. Retrieved 2016-01-25. 
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "ITG Freak - What is ITG?". rhythmatic.net. ITG Freak Staff. Retrieved 25 June 2017. 
  10. ^ a b c d e "IN THE GROOVE - Instruction Manual - Arrow Modifiers". manual.pocitac.com. RedOctane, InTheGroove, Roxor, PositiveGaming. Retrieved 25 June 2017. 
  11. ^ xNagisaDDRLoverx (2015-05-15), In The Groove 1 ver ps2 (sm3.9), retrieved 2017-08-09 
  12. ^ OMG KON! (2010-01-04), Kon - Anubis (Expert) Double Star 98.39% on in the groove (PS2), retrieved 2017-08-09 
  13. ^ OMG KON! (2010-01-04), Kon - Anubis (Expert) Double Star 98.39% on in the groove (PS2), retrieved 2017-08-09 
  14. ^ xNagisaDDRLoverx (2015-05-15), In The Groove 1 ver ps2 (sm3.9), retrieved 2017-08-09 
  15. ^ "In The Groove Cheats, PC". www.supercheats.com. Retrieved 2017-08-09. 
  16. ^ "PS2 In the Groove Dance Game". www.ddrgame.com. Retrieved 2016-01-25. 
  17. ^ "in the groove | www.kyleaward.com". www.kyleaward.com. Retrieved 2017-07-24. 
  18. ^ "In the Groove Cheats". GameSpot. Information contributed by djHaQ. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved 25 June 2017. 
  19. ^ Text of Konami Corporation v. Roxor Games, Inc. is available from:  WebSupp  Google Scholar 
  20. ^ "Analysis: patent reform bill unable to clean up patent mess". Ars Technica. 
  21. ^ Text of Konami Corporation v. Roxor Games, Inc. - Mad Catz SEC Filing/10-Q Document is available from:  SEC.gov  MadCatz Investor Relations 

External links[edit]