|Dance Dance Revolution interactive video game was open and free to all University of La Verne students Monday. Senior Chelsea Riggins battled sophomore Nick Solis and almost got a perfect score. The video game displays arrow signals providing a pattern that changes in pace. It becomes challenging to stay in sync with the chosen song’s rhythm.
A Japanese proverb states that we are fools whether we dance or not, so we may as well dance.
The University of La Verne Campus Activities Board followed this philosophy as it kicked off CAB Week with a Dance Dance Revolution Contest at 8 p.m. on Monday in Leo’s Den.
“Students have been asking CAB for this game,” said Manny Lopez, the Campus Activities Board games and recreations coordinator. “They seem pretty excited to be out here with DDR.”
The Campus Activities Board rented the game, which arrived in Leo’s Den last week.
The game has proven to have a strong fan base among ULV students.
Many of the students competing in the evenings’ games were beginners, but several had been playing for years.
“I used to play in my aunt’s basement with my sisters,” said Omeyimi Dimowo, a freshman speech communications major. “Sometimes we never ate because we were too busy playing.”
The competition began slowly, but started to pick up as students were let out of class.
A half hour after the event started, only eight people attended the event. However, by 9 p.m., there were 20 people participating and cheering in the contest.
There were about as many people watching as there were competing.
Dance Dance Revolution is a music video game that has taken the world by storm. It first debuted in Japanese video arcades in 1998.
The game is typically played on a dance pad with four panels – left, right, up and down. These directional panels light up to the beat of a song.
DDR is a combination of concentration and letting your guard down. Participants cannot be shy to play this game.
During this contest, two people dance next to each other at once, while everyone else watches. DDR plays a song while the screen reads the arrow showing the steps to the player.
The four squares need to be stepped on in order to gain points. If the player misses the squares, he or she does not receive any points. If both players miss too many steps, the game ends. One contestant in the contest kept up with the moves, but was missing his steps and therefore lost points.
ULV students were able to sign up for three levels: heavy, standard and light.
The winner of the heavy level won a ticket to Six Flag’s Magic Mountain, the winner of the standard level won a ticket to Universal Studios and the winner of the light level won two movie tickets.
“I realize now there are many DDRers in the world and I’m not one of them,” said Adam Stahly, a sophomore business major. “But I still want the movie tickets.”
The competition was intense throughout. If the player does not miss a step, he or she gets a combo step. The DDR game keeps track of the steps and there was a point when two contestants kept the same steps for 300 steps until one slipped up. The other contestant kept her steps for 96 more.
“I played off and on for four years,” said Charles Mayr, a freshman at the College of Law. “It was something to do when I was bored.”
Mayr used to play soccer and said DDR is a good way to keep motor skills in shape during the off-season.
Senior art major Chelsea Riggins agreed.
“I played consistently in high school,” said Rigging. “It was great therapy for my torn ACL.”
“You’ve got to be comfortable and get over the fact that people stare as you step on a metal pad,” Mayr said.
Riggins said it also helps to learn the patterns.
Mayr and Riggins were the top two players of the night.
Riggins took the prize for the highest score in the highest level.
“This is my first DDR competition,” Riggins said. “I’m glad it was close. I never wanted to drive to other tournaments.”
Rick Montañez can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.