Rhythm is ubiquitous.

The beating of my mother’s heart felt within her womb.  The sounds of the street: the ‘ompa,’ ‘ompa,’ ‘ompa,’ clank, clank, clank, clatter, clatter, clatter, swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, clunk, clunk, clunk.

The music, the patterns, the light and the dark.

Rhythm is organic to life itself and is core to music.  African drums.  Japanese taiko drums.  Rap music.  Classical Bach.

Sports have rhythm.  With the tech revolution, we now get to play games where rhythm and music add to the fun and excitement.    Now there are RHYTHM games.

(Thanks to the Blogger, Tofugu.com. My Healthy Addiction to Japanese Rhythm Games.)
What Are Rhythm Games?

Rhythm games are games where you play along with music.  Hitting buttons on the game in sync with a song.

Some rhythm games (like Guitar Hero) let you use an instrument to play along, others use motion-capture to allow you to use your whole body to dance along to the music (like Wii games).  Erin and Katie used to dance to hip hop or 80s rock using Nintendo’s Wii.

Arcade game from Back to the Future

Do any of you remember arcades filled with computer games?  Remember the film, ‘Back to the Future?’

In the 80s, Don and I used to go to Goldies in Seattle when we had the rare opportunity to go on a date.  We would leave our 3 little girls at home with two teenage babysitters. We’d leave Vashon Island on a ferry and take a trip over to the big city, stop for an inexpensive burger and then spend a couple of hours at Goldies Arcade Center.  We played Mario Brothers, Pacman, Donkey Kong.  Don was much better than I,  and I was pretty happy to watch and admire his skills of dexterity.

Those special arcades in the United States have pretty much dried up and now we play computer games in the comfort of our own homes, on our iPads or even on our phones.  No need to come up with a quarter a game.  But, there is something fun about going out with friends and experiencing the joy of the arcade.  Where did all the Putt-Putt golf places go?

The Japanese and the Japanese computer game companies have not abandoned the culture of the arcade.  It is still the place to go and spend an afternoon with the family or with friends.  A mall near us in Nagoya, dedicated a full floor to arcades.   Arcades have had a long and healthy life in Japan. 


MaiMai, is one of the newest Sega Rhythm game.  It looks to me like a washing machine that makes cool visuals and music.  Looks a lot more fun than doing my wash.  The game seems to fit well into the manga and ‘kawaii’ culture of the young girls of modern Japan.