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Saturday, July 2, 2016

Song of the Week! 2 July 2016

Fun fact: did you know that we already covered most of Dokodon! Mystery Adventure's returning songs on this blog that are featured in the solo mid-boss fights against the Hexaglia members?

Only two songs are missing from this peculiar picture, but that changes today!

 Yami no Mahou Shoujo (闇の魔法少女) Silver Forest feat. Aki
Allx4 (182)x6 (295)x7 (496)x9 (1158)
 Taiko 0 K, Taiko PS Vita1, Taiko 3DS 3, Taiko iOS

Much like the blue-haired Matthias, the portal-maker Lily has only one solo boss fight on her belt, starring none other than Silver Forest's latest Namco Original song. For a dark magician who is dressed like a black-robed witch, what song could fit her better than the one about an inverse magical girl seeking for the darkest of powers to be unleashed?

Literally translatable in English as 'Magical Girl of Darkness', Yami no Mahou Shoujo is the work of love from some of the most recurrent artists from the Silver Forest doujin circle, starring circle representative NYO as the composer/arranger and current main vocalist Aki (アキ) as the singer/other voices. After Namco Original Mugen no Sora, this is the 2nd Taiko song whose lyrics have been provided by doujin circle Axis Planet member Shiba Inu P (しばいぬP▽・×・▽). Later in the same year of the song's release, Yami no Mahou Shoujo was featured in the Yami no Mahou Kekkai (闇の魔法結界, lit. 'Magic Barrier of Darkness') Silver Forest album, which made its debut as an exclusive piece of merchandise to December 2014's 87th edition of the Comiket.

Without beating around the bush, it's quite obvious where notecharter Shika@ni~san (しか@に~さん)'s Oni notechart is fondly remembered the most... Its-four-digit Oni notecount is the first one to be achieved in a non-10* Oni chart of sorts, while also being the currently-highest note count for the 9* difficulty range, with four 999-digit contenders being distant second-placers (the 9mm Parabellum Bullet songs, Jinsei Reset Button and Shoujo no Kami no Ryuushi).

What ultimately seals the deal for this song's difficulty, however, is its base BPM value of 200 -the same one of most of Sampling Masters MEGA's Taiko songs- which ultimately makes the whole Oni mode an exercise of stamina desperation in the constant struggle not to drop the energy to follow the chart. The pressing stamina-drainer madness only stops half-away during the song... and it's for some scrolling speed-up trickery, so 1st-timers and players not relying on muscle memory in general can't have a break even on the less dense note portion of the Oni notechart!

 Mahoujin -Summon Delta- (魔方陣 -サモン・デルタ-)
Allx4 (134)x6 (225)x7 (385)x9 (600)
 Taiko 0 Mu, Taiko 3DS 3, Taiko Wii U 3

Also in the same Story mode chapter as Lily's solo fight, elderly Hexaglia member Deborah has a rematch with the Taiko brothers by using this song, after being defeated under the sounds of Theremin Rhapsody of Wii 3 memory. It also shares song genre and star ratings with the latest Silver Forest Namco Original!

From the title we can already get that the idea behind the song was mixing magical properties with mathematics proportions, as many illustrious mathematician from the Greek tradition have believed in. The Mahoujin in the title, for example, is actually the Japanese naming for the magic square, a concept illustrated by recreational mathematics as an arrangement of distinct numbers (i.e., each number is used once) in a square grid, where the numbers in each row, and in each column, and the numbers in the main and secondary diagonals all add up to the same number, dubbed the "magic constant". This thesis is also supported by the Delta appearing in the title, also relevant in mathematics in its upper-case form (Δ) for a number of meanings, such as the change of any changeable quantity or the area of a triangle.

Quite in parallel with the "Game Music New Last Boss" trend from the Wii U titles, Taiko arcade firmware have tried to initiate a curious trend of having brand-new songs by Production GIW affiliate Hisui (翡翠) as the last Don Point unlock for each firmware release, ultimately resulting into only 2 songs following this pattern (with the former one being Gashadokuro).

With roughly more than half the notes of Yami no Mahou Shoujo, Mahoujin -Summon Delta- features a 9-star Oni which is more on the technicality spectrum of reading-and-reproducing the carts on screen, as its high base BPM is being treated with mostly slow scrolling speeds and time stanzas of different quantities of beats, from the regular and 2-and-a-half in the non-Go-Go-Time portions and the 1/12 triple-beat stanzas of the rest, with tricky 1/12 and 1/16 note clusters pepper along the way towards the song's completion.

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