The Beasties: By Mappers, for Mappers.
The BeastSaber Mapping Awards were launched in 2021 to highlight the best of the best of the art (and science) of making custom Beat Saber maps. The first year featured 29 categories, garnered 760 nominated maps, resulting in 96 finalists, with more than 45 medals won.
Map curation is focused on maps that avoid objectively bad mapping and have a “fun factor” that appeals to a member of our curation team – the “blockbuster movies” of the custom map world. The Beasties go beyond the fun factor to dig deep into mapping theory and practices to highlight the maps that may not have grabbed the spotlight but are well-constructed and have incredible representation, emphasis, and flow to truly capture the feel of the song – the art films of the custom map world.
What’s Changing for 2022?
We’ve received a lot of constructive community feedback on the 2021 awards and already have a few tweaks planned for 2022!
We took the feedback we received from both mappers and the community about the 2021 categories, discussed, nipped, tucked, and tweaked to pull together a slightly different slate of awards for this year. See the complete list of 2021 Winners.
Any categories that do not receive at least five qualified nominees will not be awarded at the end of the year.
Map of the Year TWEAKED!
The best unmodded map of the year. Full stop. It has it all – representation, emphasis, flow – everything coming together for an incredible playing experience to go with the song.
Modchart of the Year NEW!
The best overall modchart of the year has the whole package – modded gameplay AND amazing visuals. Cannot be the winner of Best Modchart Gameplay or Best Modchart Visuals.
OST/DLC Map of the Year NEW!
Let’s take a moment to shine some light on the great work that our community-turned-official mappers have done and celebrate the best official map made in 2022.
Skrillex – Devil’s Den
Best Full Spread Map
This map has something for players at every level and does it with style and masterful mapping. To qualify, the map must have all five *true* difficulties—Easy, Normal, Hard, Expert, ExpertPlus.
Best Alternate Game Mode Map TWEAKED!
This category celebrates the best of non-standard characteristics: Single Saber, No Arrows, and 360/90-Degree maps. Maps must actually use the alt characteristic and not mods to simulate.
Rookie Lighter of the Year
The best up-and-coming lighter whose first map/lightshow was released during the nomination period. Previously deleted maps count as first map releases.
Map Style Categories
Best Dance Style Map
With a blend of big arm swings, high movement, and a bit lower density, the best map in the “Dance” category gets players of all ages grooving to the beat and sweating up a storm.
Best Tech Style Map
With more angles than a dodecahedron, the best map in the “Tech” category bends the concept of parity to its will to create a challenging sight-read that retains great flow.
Best Fitness Style Map NEW!
Build strength to the beat. The best fitness map forces constant natural movement in all dimensions with walls and bloqs that keep the flow until your legs give out.
Best Balanced Style Map
Look in the sky! Is it a tech map? Is it a dance map? Is it a speed map? WE DON’T KNOW! The Best Balanced Style Map is the mutt of the neighborhood – a little of this, a little of that – all combining into one fantastic map.
Best Accuracy Style Map
Chase that sweet high accuracy in a very, very careful dance. The best map in the Accuracy category has excellent rhythmic choice and well-placed emphasis with the fewest amount of notes.
Best Speed Style Map
Nothing screams “speed” more than that feeling of lactic acid setting in after tackling thousands of notes at mind-blowing BPMs, and the best map in the “Speed” category delivers an extra helping.
Best Challenge Style Map
Ranking Criteria? Curation? Mapping fundamentals? These are but chains to restrict the seemingly endless and wild imagination of challenge mappers. The best map in the “Challenge” category pushes the limits in every way.
Best Alternative Style Map NEW!
Poodles and Pauls and Bombs, oh my! The best “alternative style” map shows of some of the wacky manipulations that play fast and loose with gameplay and have become community fan favorites.
Best Ranked Map by Difficulty TWEAKED!
There will be four star splits for 2022 instead of the two we had in 2021. Nominate your favorite ranked map diff and our team will sort it into the appropriate category. Splits are currently under 4*, 4-7*, 7-10*, and 10+* though splits will likely need to be adjusted after PPV2.9.
Best Unranked Map by Difficulty NEW!
The four best unranked map splits parallel the ranked splits but apply to the majority of maps that are not ranked. Nominate your favorite difficulty and our team will sort it into the appropriate category. Roughly based on the Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, and Master tags from BeastSaber.
Best Modchart Visuals TWEAKED!
Formerly called “Artmaps,” these maps use all the power of Noodle Extensions and Chroma to convey the music and/or tell us a story through the creative use of mods and any notemods aren’t the main focus of the map.
Best Modchart Gameplay TWEAKED!
Here? There? Where is the next note coming from?! This category includes maps that feature solid mapping AND alter the gameplay in mind-blowing ways through animation and manipulation of notes and obstacles.
Lighting nominations only have one “funnel” on the form. The Beasties team will separate maps into the right categories based on their construction. Impending changes to the base game lighting system will also impact categories.
Best Chroma Lights
The Best Chroma Lighting category is full of any and all light shows that might make you drop the Full Combo to marvel at the beauty in the background using RGB color, precise component control, and Light ID.
I am a mapper. Can I nominate my own work for an award?
In a change from 2022, yes, you can nominate your own maps for the appropriate category within reason. Be sure you are truly focusing on your best work and please don’t spam nominations.
Who chooses the finalists in each category?
We’ve lined up a team of about 20 Verified Mapper “Subject Matter Experts” spanning all of our categories. We may add more throughout the year based on the volume we’re seeing but our primary goal was to identify at least three “experts” in each area. For example, we have tech mappers and players screening tech maps; modcharters screening modcharts, experienced Chroma lighters screening lightshows, etc. We also get additional input from the BeastSaber curation team to supplement expert input.
What is the timeline for the 2022 awards?
The eligibility period for maps and individuals is based on the date and time shown on BeatSaver. Hover over the “Uploaded” time to see the full UTC time stamp. Maps must have been released after December 1, 2021 at 00:00 UTC or before November 30, 2022 at 23:59 UTC. Beyond the nomination period, we expect finalist selection to occur in late December/early January with the awards show planned for late January/early February 2023.
Can I nominate whatever I want for a category?
The BeastSaber Mapping Awards are, well, mapping awards. This means that the mapping needs to be of the highest quality. At a bare minimum nominations need to meet objective curation standards, but our finalist review panel will be going way beyond what the curation team looks at and turning a critical eye toward timing, emphasis, representation, and much more. Nominations will be screened for major issues as they come in with everything that is finalist quality being intensely reviewed as we determine the five finalists in each category at the end of the year.