Rhythmic Language

Her opening move consists of using a blue-green gradient hued drumstick to constantly hit a trapezoidal rubber pad. The percussive collision occurs twice as often as the perceivable beats-per-minute of the song she’s playing. The girl herself, on the other hand, who accompanies the steady beat of her right hand with occasional hits from her left (every even-numbered count from one to four, given a whole musical measure), only seems to busy herself with the drum pads surrounded by concave rims of different colors; she does not mind the metallic foot pedal that is just beneath the aforementioned pads. A gigantic sub-woofer situated between the pads and the pedal has a rim that would light a blinding blue whenever the foot pedal is stepped on.

Picture: Arcade

She finishes playing the song and a thin guy wearing a black shirt takes center stage. He plays a song called “ROLLING1000tOON” with moderate enthusiasm, as one might infer from how his head slightly bops with the tempo of the music he hears and plays. Carefully observing his hands would probably make someone notice how he has a good grasp of letting his drumsticks smoothly glide in his hands.

Later on, another song he’s playing enters a breakdown where the drums momentarily disappear. His face exhibits a smirk, as if suggesting a sense of relief from his physical exertion.

The aforementioned two — the ones who played drum beats of Japanese songs on an electronic drum kit mounted on a tall, metallic cabinet — had an audience. And yet, the performers — even the bustling environment of the arcade — seem to go unnoticed by people surrounding a DrumMania V7 machine. Eyes seem to turn most, if not all, of their attention to colorful rectangular shapes falling within a cathode ray tube display. Sometimes, I wonder what goes on in the minds of people when they watch someone play a rhythm game in the arcade. See, there is more to a rhythm game — or any video game for that matter — than simply what is going on in-game.

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