I’ve had a few people ask me if I was able to figure out how to obtain an A letter grade overall and in each section. I will do my best to try and explain how I have managed to consistently get an A across all freestyle types.
In DJ Hero 2, freestyle is broken down into three groups. Freestyle Samples, Freestyle Scratches, and Freestyle Cross-fading. The effects knob will not affect your letter grade, so feel free to twist that damn thing as fast as you can back and forth to obtain the maximum score.
So anyway, after starting spending an hour or two with this demo they gave us, I’ve been able to figure out a few things about each different type of freestyling. I am in no way claiming that this information is 100% accurate, because unfortunately my friends over at Activision and FreeStyleGames are holding out on me. For some reason, one of them believes he has a chance at actually beating me in a battle challenge… I think not. If anyone believes they’ve found better methods of doing freestyling, by all means please add to the discussion. Hopefully eventually I will be able to get some official information on exactly how the grading system works.
So before I get started, most people will probably wonder “well, how the hell do I tell if I did good on that freestyle section or not? Other than the grade at the end, there’s no score indicator on the screen?!”
It’s pretty simple actually. You’ll notice at the end of a section, you’ll see what I like to call “fireworks” erupt from each stream involved in the freestyle section. The higher the fireworks go, the better you’ve done on that particular section. It’s quite hard to explain exactly how high they go for what percentage, but after playing around with it a few times and figure out how to 100% a section it will become pretty easy to tell when you nailed it.
If you’re still confused about what I mean by fireworks… Refer to the picture below:
The higher the fireworks travel, the higher the percentage you just obtained.
Between the three different sections, I think I’ll start off with freestyle cross-fading. This is one is by far the easiest, but also hard to explain. I’ll do my best.
DJ Hero 2 is all about mixing it up, which is exactly what you will need to be doing here. From what I can tell, the blank sections on the streams are the areas you’ll want to be crossing over that track. In other words, when you see a gap in the stream, that’s when you’ll either want to fade out to that track, or fade back in to the center. The gaps can be seen in this picture below:
Just fading back and forth, however, is not going to gain you that A. It seems that in order to obtain an A, you need to mix it up a bit as I mentioned earlier. I don’t believe there is actually a set path you will need to take, but you’ll definitely want to fade back and forth between the center and the two tracks. From my experience, if you don’t use all 3 fader positions at some point during the freestyle section, you won’t 100% that section.
Next up is freestyle scratch. This one is fairly simple, but 9 times out of 10 ends up sounding less pleasing if you use my method. Feel free to help expand on this one and figure out a way to make it sound good, and get that 100%
I use the same method during almost ever freestyle scratch section, with just a little bit of a twist each time. It seems like the ending is looking for a variety here when determining a percentage score for each particular section. Timing may be a factor as well, but I’ve managed to get away with being completely off and still getting a 100% on a section. The way I usually do this is by starting off with slow up and down scratches while speeding it up throughout the section. Usually if I drop the note and re-trigger it, I have better luck with a 100% than just scratching the whole time. I’ve also had luck with adding in single down or up scratches as well. More than likely, scratching at the same speed throughout the entire section will cause you to obtain a very low percentage. Remember, DJ Hero 2 is all about mixing it up a bit.
Next up is Freestyle Sample. This one is fairly simple, but I still have trouble with it sometimes. If anyone has any ideas on how to perfect this one, please let everyone know.
From my personal experience, all you really have to do is continue what we did in DJ Hero 1. Trigger at least 2 samples. This time around we have been relieved of the dreaded knob though. No longer do we have to deal with it, seeing that the samples are actually built into the mixes now. The only catch is, it seems like they’re actually looking at your timing this time around. Mashing the button has caused me to get a very low percentage almost every time. I’ve had a lot of luck triggering the samples on 4th and 8th notes. You can use the measure notches on the sides of the highway to help you out with this.
Hopefully my explanations help a few people figure out how to get better at these new freestyle elements in DJ Hero 2. Cross-fading and Samples really seem to be based on timing, so if your TV isn’t calibrated you’re going to get that fixed. Otherwise you’ll need very good listening skills.
I’ve said it already and I’ll say it again. If anyone can add to this or improve upon it, please do in the comments below.