Early logo

One of the early logo's

Pop'n music (ポップンミュージック Poppun Myūjikku) is a series developed by Bemani, a sector of Konami. It is a rhythm series that is known for its colorful graphics and difficulty spike between levels. 

Currently there are 22 games of the main series, several of which were altered to be put onto consoles. Along with several spin-off titles. 

For a game list, view the front page.

For a list of characters please view the games individual pages. 


Game pad

When using a gamepad, this is the how the buttons usually look

Between the games and play methods Pop'n Music has generally stayed faithful to it's earlier days and will consist of five-to-nine buttons between. The goal of the game is to tap the matching buttons as Pop-Kun falls to the bottom of the screen. 

Accuracy and Combo scoring is the key to winning. With a Great netting one-hundred percent, Good scores twenty-five percent, and a Bad results in zero. In most cases, the most points someone can score in a song is 100,000; with no additional scoring added. When playing in Expert Mode or Cho Challenge (Super Challenge) Mode, Cool is added to the scoring and decreases the points awarded to Great or Good scores. 

Pocket pad

A early handheld

The game is also capable of keeping the record of the longest combo in a song, but will always exclude the first note. Meaning that if a song lists 125 notes, it would show 124.  While the arcade version uses the game pad, the consoles are generally played using it's system mechanics - such as the nunchuck and Wii remote for Wii, a remote with the buttons assigned to specific colors, or even a touch method with the aid of a Stylus Pen.  

Like many rhythm games, Pop'n Music also includes a special mechanic known as the "Groove Gauge". This is where the players performance info is shown and used to show how close they are to the Clear Zone. Once they reach it, any Great note will become a Fever, which does not change the scoring system; instead showing an alternate character animation. The character will also use an alternate pose if they end the song while in Fever.

In Expert and Cho Challenge, Great does not become Fever, and instead, Cool flashes simularly like Fever would. 


A song screen

A general screen in a game

In all games, a screen will show the Player who the character they are playing against will be, along with a banner, BPM, and etc. 

From this screen an option menu can also be located and edited with the following options: 

  • Hi-Speed: Players adjust the speed in which notes appear. 
  • Pop-Kun: The player can alter the appearance of Pop-kun and turn him into Beat-Pop from Beatmania, Stage-Pop from Pop'n Stage, or even the rival Character known as Chara-Pop
  • Appearance: Changes the visibility of the notes on screen. Hidden will hide the notes when they come half-way down the screen, while Hidden+Sudden only shows them for a brief second. 
  • Random: This changes the pattern of the notes. Random shuffles them so that instead of hitting a yellow note, you will have to hit a blue. Mirror changes the pattern to horizontal. Super Random will shuffle every note individually, but still obey the original chart - so if no red notes appear normally, none will still. 




A typical game screen

A basic story mode. For each level the player must beat the score set per song and are scored based on how well they play. Each song in this mode has a point value from one, to forty-three. The total is tallied on specific songs, while some may trigger an extra stage. The chart for the song will become very hard and the gauge is made on a health system. If the bar was to completely drain then the song will end.  

Cho ChallengeEdit

A harder variant to Challange Mode. In both modes, the Norma and Ojama options may be used. Norma is a set goal of over two-hundred notes or a score of ninety-thousand or above. Ojama is a distraction device against the opposing player. It consists of Dance, where the character will go to the middle of the screen and block notes for the opponent, and Bomber, who is Pop-kun wearing glasses who explodes to cause damage. 

Before the introduction of Cho Challenge, the player could choose one option to play for the entire duration of the song. Afterwards, the option Zutto On! was added, allowing the player to always keep on any two options. 


A popular mode of play allowing two players to compete against each other using the same game pad with only the Green, Yellow, and White buttons available to play with. Blue was used as an Action Button.

As a player scores Great, a power meter increases. Upon reaching a certain level, the player can use Action to begin a Minigame which requires the player to alternate between pressing the Action Button in time with the song. One when misses, Ojama-status is in effect. 


First appearing in Pop'n Music 6, it is similar to Nonstop Mode, from other Bemani titles. The player will select a pre-made course of four songs and play through them with a Stamina health bar. Each time a mistake is made, the player has no chance to recover any lost points. It was removed after Pop'n Music 18. 

Osusume Edit

Introduced in Pop'n Music 9, this is a Recommendation mode where the player answers questions that decide an expert course for the player, based on them. This was removed after Pop'n Music 11. 

Net TaisenEdit

First appearing in Pop'n Music 12 after the introduction of the E-Amuse System. This is what allows players to compete over the Internet or E-Network. In Pop'n Music 17, the CPU emulated version was added. 


The standard mode of play. It was removed starting with Pop'n Music 12. 


A replacement for Normal Mode, it is simplified for beginners and has a shorter song, less note tracks, an easy grading system, and one-hundred points awarded before the song begins. The player is docked per note should they miss it. 


  • The series was originally intended to be a game for couples to play when they went out. 
  • A early American version was named Beat'n Groovy.
  • The only way to escape Enjoy mode, is by failing purposely.
  • Until Pop'n Music 6, scoring Good broke a combo.

Other links of interestEdit