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Osu.gif Standard Taiko.gif Taiko Ctb.gif Catch the Beat Mania.gif Mania

osu! gameplay.



What is "Ouendan"?

Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan is a rhythm game for the Nintendo DS. The gameplay consists of only three elements: tapping circles on the touchscreen, dragging a ball across a fixed path and rotating a spinner very fast. All these elements are timed to (covers of) popular Japanese songs. It looks like this on the DS:


You can see the circles on the bottom screen, and on the top screen you have the story. Each stage is basically a self-contained story about a person in trouble. That's where the Ouendan (Cheer squad) comes in. Through the magical power of male cheer-leading, you have to help the people in trouble.

How to play

While most PC users won't have a touchscreen at their disposal, this game is made to be playable with a normal mouse, as well as any number of input devices you can possibly think of. Different play styles can be found in the Play Styles page. There are some songs which push the limits of the normal mouse (and you), but all the (ranked and approved) beatmaps have been tested and (most can be) passable using only a mouse.

Gameplay Basics

Tutorial: (Bundled with PC osu!) Original tutorial, Ranked beatmap version

The gameplay puts emphasis on your:

  • Adaptability and reaction to stimuli (that is, the hittable objects appearing all over the screen at varying speeds)
  • Understanding of the song beat and design
  • Aim
  • Button tapping
  • Timing of your hits on the objects that appeared on the screen
  • Ability to spin the cursor in circles
  • Physical stamina (especially marathon songs)
  • Proper mouse positioning and hand-eye coordination
  • Hardware capability (especially your mouse or tablet)

These are some of the vital skills you will learn as you progress your journey on becoming an osu! rhythm master. Before you set out to become a rhythm master, you must learn the basics (and theories) of the hittable objects.

Let's learn about what the hittable objects are.

Hit Circles


  • Here you can see the circles you have to tap.
    • The smaller coloured circle on the outside (approach circle) shrinks and you have to hit the note at the exact point the outside circle overlaps with the white border.
  • To understand the hidden charm of hit circles, you should not only rely on your perception (your eyes) but also the understanding of the beatmap's beats and rhythm by your ears (auditory).



  • Here we have a slider.
    • First, you have to hit it at the right moment, but it doesn't end there.
    • A ball will start to move across the path you see.
    • You have to hold and keep your cursor inside the thick orange circle surrounding the ball as it moves.
      • You cannot control the movement.
      • The orange circle will appear if you are holding it and disappears when you leave it.
    • Sometimes, as in the screenshot above, you have to move back at the end of the path.
      • You can tell by the reverse symbol at the end of the path.



  • This is a spinner.
    • You have to click then hold the hit button, and the mouse is used to spin (clockwise or counter-clockwise) in circles before the timer (which is, that blue circle line) runs out.
      • In the new default skin, there is no spinner timer.
      • The bars on the outside (in the new default skin, it is the size of the spinner) indicate how close you are to passing.
      • The small bar below the spinner shows spins per minute -- the number of spins you are making if you continue that speed of spinning for one minute.
      • If you didn't hold any hit button prior to spinning, you will not fill up the gauge at all.
  • On the DS, this is a good way to scratch your touchscreen (or screen protector), especially on the higher difficulties.
  • In osu!, spinners have been toned down as to not be such a nuisance to complete.
    • The maximum number of spins per minute achievable is 477. The Auto game modifier spins at this speed, but the Spun Out modifier only spins at 287.
    • Learn and try to spin in very small circles.
  • [Mouse]If your cursor did not spin at all but moved statically despite you spinning really quickly, your mouse was not able to keep up with your movements.
    • Conventional mice may suffer from this issue, and it is best to start spinning slowly instead of suddenly spinning really fast so that the mouse can detect what you are doing.

In-Game Interface


This is the osu! game style interface.

  • The top left bar is your "health".
    • This will decrease at a steady rate [depending on the beatmap difficulty set by the mapper(s)], but you can replenish it by hitting notes at the right time.
    • A perfectly timed hit (300 hit or Geki Beat) will increase your health more than a badly timed hit (50 hit).
    • A total miss will take a good chunk out of your health.
  • Next to the health bar (at the right) is your score.
  • Below the score is your accuracy.
  • The circle beside your accuracy and below your score is a timer bar, which shows the song length. It can be modified at the Options screen under "Progress Bar Position"
  • The number on the bottom left is the combo counter/score multiplier.


This section details all the intricacies of scoring, including mathematical formula.


Main article: Accuracy

Accuracy = Total points of hits / (Total number of hits * 300)
Total points of hits (Number of 50s * 50 + Number of 100s * 100 + Number of 300s * 300)
Total number of hits (Number of misses + Number of 50's + Number of 100's + Number of 300's)

In other words, each miss counts as 0 points, each 50 counts as 50 points, each 100 as 100 points and each 300 as 300 points. Add them all together and divide the sum with the number of hits multiplied by 300. If you score only 300s you will get a result of 1.00 which means 100% accuracy. If you score only 100s you will get a result of 0.3333 (i.e. 100/300), which means 33.33% accuracy.


Main article: Score

The score given by each hit circle and end of a slider is calculated with the following formula:

Score = Hit Value + Hit Value * (Combo multiplier * Difficulty multiplier * Mod multiplier) / 25
Hit Value The hit circle judgement (50, 100 or 300).
Combo multiplier (Combo before this hit - 1) or 0, whichever is higher.
Difficulty multiplier The difficulty setting for the beatmap.
Mod multiplier The multiplier of the selected mods.

Additionally each slider start, end and repeat tick awards 30 points, each slider middle tick awards 10 points and each spin of a spinner awards 100 points. You are also awarded with additional bonus of 1,000 points for each spin of a spinner after the spinner meter is full.

Hit circle judgement


  • You get a 300, 100 or 50 from a normal hit circle depending on how accurately you click on it.
  • If you do not click on the hit circle at all or click on it way too early, you will receive a miss.


  • The judgement for sliders does not depend on the accuracy of the initial hit.
  • Sliders consist of slider ticks, which include the start, end and repeat points of the slider.
  • You receive a 300 if you successfully get all slider ticks, a 100 if you get at least half of them and a 50 if you manage to hit even one of the ticks.
  • Clicking a slider way too early does not incur a miss, but will reset the score multiplier to 0.
  • You only receive a miss if you hit none of the slider ticks.


  • For a spinner, you receive a 300, 100 or 50 depending on the number of spins done compared to the length of the spinner.
  • You receive a miss if you are not able to fill the meter shown on both sides of the spinner.


The following each add a point to your score multiplier:

  • A successfully hit on the hit circle.
  • A successfully hit at the start of a slider.
  • A successfully touched end of a slider.
  • A successfully touched on the slider tick.
  • A successfully completed/semi-completed spinner.

The following will reset your score multiplier to zero:

  • Missing a hit circle.
  • Clicking a slider start way too early.
  • Missing a slider start or slider tick.
  • Unable to fill up at least half the gauge of a spinner.

The following will not increase or reset your score multiplier:

  • Missing a slider end. (Will result in getting Katu or 100/50 Hit)
  • Spinner: 1,000 Bonus


Normal grades

  • SS = 100% accuracy
  • S = Over 90% 300s, less than 1% 50s and no misses.
  • A = Over 80% 300s and no misses OR over 90% 300s.
  • B = Over 70% 300s and no misses OR over 80% 300s.
  • C = Over 60% 300s.
  • D = Anything else.

Special grades

  • Silver SS (SSH) = 100% accuracy with 'hidden' and/or 'flashlight' mod.
  • Silver S (SH) = Over 90% 300s, less than 1% 50s and no misses with 'hidden' and/or 'flashlight' mod.

Regarding the "Ranks" in profile page

  • Grades you obtained will be set at your profile page under General->Ranks provided you are online when receiving the grade.
    • Offline play even when your account is logged in is not counted.
  • Grades given for your profile is dependent on beatmap difficulties, not as whole.
    • If the beatmap have 3 difficulties, and you SS all three of them, you will receive 3 SS and not just one SS in your profile.

Life meter

↱ Life bar

The system used to calculate life drain and life gain is complicated so it will not be explained in detail. It all revolves around the life difficulty setting which can only be set by the mapper itself.

You gain life from:

  • Hitting a hit circle. (Better judgement leads to more life gain. The last hit circle in a color combo awards more life.)
  • Hitting a slider start, end or return tick. (Better judgement at the end tick leads to more life gain)
  • Spinning and completing a spinner. (Better judgement at the end of the spinner leads to more life gain)
  • Continue to spin the spinner (depends on how fast you spin per spin difficulty)

You lose life from:

  • Constant life drain.
  • Missing a hit circle or a slider.
  • Not completing a spinner.
  • Not spinning after you completed your spinner.

You reserve life from:

  • Break time
  • Spinning after you completed your spinner.

Common issues and questions

Where can I find and get the beatmaps?

Detailed explanation of the beatmaps: Beatmaps

You can find it from the main page under the name "Beatmaps".

  • Just remember to log in to your osu! account before-hand or the server treats you as a guest and prohibit you from downloading beatmaps from the site.

My ranked score isn't increasing! Is this a bug?

No, it's not a bug.

First, check to make sure you're connected to the internet and logged in to your osu! account in-game. Scores obtained while not logged in are not submitted and therefore do not count towards your ranked score. Such scores are only recorded on your local scoreboard. It is not possible to submit your local scores to add on to your ranked score afterwards.

Ranked score only counts the best online score from each beatmap set (or song), not by each difficulty score.

Here's an example. I have the following scores on five maps:-

   [1].Heart.gif BRANDY - The Festival of Ghosts 2
       Relaxing : 3,000,000
       DaRRi MIx : 5,000,000 , (Offline: 7,000,000)
   [2].Heart.gif ZZ - Samurai Blue
       Easy : 500,000
       Normal : 1,000,000
       Hard : No score , (Offline:  2,500,000)
   [3].Heart.gif Matchbox 20 - How Far We've Come
       Normal : 2,000,000
       Hard : 1,500,000
   [4].Fire.gif Yoko Ishida - paraparaMAX I
       marathon: 200,000,000 ,(Second: 100,000,000), (Fail score: 50,000,000) , (Offline: 500,000,000)
   [5].Loituma - Ievan Polkka 
       SPINNER-MADNESS: 100,000
  • My total ranked score from this beatmap set is [1]. (5,000,000) + [2]. (1,000,000) + [3]. (2,000,000) = 8,000,000.
  • My total score from this beatmap set is [1]. (3,000,000 + 5,000,000) + [2]. (500,000 + 1,000,000) + [3]. (2,000,000 + 1,500,000) + [4]. (200,000,000 + 100,000,000 + 50,000,000) = 363,000,000.

Also, approved maps do NOT count towards your ranked score BUT your accuracy do. Approved maps are distinguished by having the Fire.gif"flame" icon instead of the Heart.gif"heart" icon.

Here's an another example (for osu!Mania).

   [1].Heart.gif Hatsune Miku - NEVERLAND
       Normal : 810,000
       Forever : 376,000 (Second : 300,000)
   [2].Heart.gif Hatsune Miku & Megpoid Gumi - MATRYOSHKA
       Easy : 967,000
       Normal : 783,000
       Hard : 320,000 (Offline : 350,000)
   [3].Heart.gif Hatsune Miku - Ai Kotoba
       Aishiteru : 979,000
       Suki : 925,000 (Offline : 990,000)
   [4].Fire.gif HujunuseikouyuuP - Talent Shredder
       0108 style : 150,000 (Second : 149,000)
       Lesjuh style : no score, (Offline : 100,000)
   [5].M2U - Lunatic Sky 
       4K Easy : 953,000
  • My total ranked score from this beatmap set is [1]. (810,000) + [2]. (967,000) + [3]. (979,000) = 2,756,000.
  • My total score from this beatmap set is [1]. (810,000 + 376,000 + 300,000) + [2]. (967,000 + 783,000 + 320,000) + [3]. (979,000 + 925,000 + 990,000) + [4]. (150,000 + 149,000) = 6,749,000.

Can I disable Kiai Time?

No because unlike video, they are integrated to the game (as a part with the hit objects), thus cannot be disabled.

The maps are too hard! Where can I find some easier maps?

Pokebis has compiled a set of beatmaps suitable for beginners to play. You can find them here: http://osu.ppy.sh/forum/t/5456

Also, the ranked beatmap version of osu! tutorial is good for practicing some of the possible mapping design you will come across. It's an excellent training map for newbies and experienced alike.

Alternatively, you can sort the ranked beatmap list by difficulty. The easiest maps are at the top of the list.


Contents of
Getting Started Registration Installation Newbie's guide Game Interface Options Hit Objects
osu! Game Styles Basic explanation Multi-play
Game Modes » Osu.gif Standard Taiko.gif Taiko Ctb.gif Catch the Beat Mania.gif Mania
External ports » osu!stream osu!droid opsu! osu!wp T-Aiko Beats
External clients » osu!tourney osu!MapDownloader
World of osu!
Miscellaneous » Mascots osu!academy osu!talk
Beatmap Editor Compose / Design (Scripting) / Timing / Song Setup

Beatmapping Beat Snap Divisor / Distance Snap Custom Sample Overrides Kiai Time Mapping Techniques Skinning Skin.ini Storyboarding

Online Editing
and Ranking
Beatmap forum Submission Beatmap Approval (How to Get Your Map Ranked) Modding (Getting Your Map Modded) Music Theory Audio Editing Kudosu / Star Priority
People The Team Administrators/Global Moderation Team Quality Assurance Team Beatmap Nomination Group Language Moderators osu! Alumni Support Team Community Contributors List of notable people