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The BeastSaber Mapping Awards

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!

 

  • Nominations will be open all year instead of only being open for a two week window. This was done to reduce “recency bias” toward maps that came out at the end of the nomination period.
  • Nominations matter! Any categories that do not receive at least five (5) qualified, finalist quality nominations will not be awarded. This will prevent scenarios that we had in 2021 where only two maps were vying for an award.
  • Community members can nominate more than one map for the same category. You may play a great tech map in April and then play another amazing one in July. Now you can nominate both as the year progresses!
  • Multiple category changes. Most of the 2021 categories were retained but some additions were made to better reflect different parts of the community. See our full list of 2022 categories.
  • Everybody gets to vote! The details won’t be finalized until the fall but we expect ALL members of the community to be able to vote on winners with Verified Mapper votes carrying additional weight. We heard you loud and clear!
  • Winners and runners-up will receive awards! Thanks to the very generous donations of the community, we have raised enough funds to provide gold medals to the winners and silver medals to the runner-ups in each category. For cases where collaborations are credited in the map metadata (e.g., two mappers’ names are displayed), both collaborators will receive a medal.

 

Nominations are open through December 14, 2022

Eligibility Period

December 1, 2021 at 00:00 UTC to November 30, 2022 at 23:59 UTC

2022 Beasties Categories

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.

Overall Categories

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.

Example Map

Teminite – Raise the Black Flag

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.

Example Map

acloudyskye – Somewhere Out There

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.

Example Map

Skrillex – Devil’s Den

Pack of the Year

The map pack that has it all: a tight theme, new high-quality maps, and a great presentation across all difficulties, all wrapped up in a .bplist bow.

Example Pack

S3RL Pack

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.

Example Map

S3RL – To Your Beat (ft. Hannah Fortune)

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.

Example Map

Aero Chord – Drop It

Individual Awards

Mapper of the Year

A mapper who not only excels in their art but also shares their experience, leads, and mentors as they are able.

2021 Winner & Runner-up

ComplexFrequency

ETAN

Lighter of the Year

A lighter – vanilla or chroma – who not only excels in their art but also shares their experience, leads, and mentors as they are able.

2021 Winner & Runner-up

AaltopahWi

Fatalution

Rookie Mapper of the Year

The best up-and-coming mapper whose first map was released during the nomination period. Previously deleted maps count as first map releases.

2021 Winner & Runner-up

JRE_McNuggies

Phoenix

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.

2021 Winner

NixieKorten

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.

Example Map

Maroon5 – Moves Like Jagger

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.

Example Map

Kanaria – Envy Baby

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.

Example Map

Stefflon Don – Sixteen Shots

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.

Example Map

The Kid Laroi & Justin Bieber – STAY,

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.

Example Map

Avicii – The Nights

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.

Example Map

Camellia – Knight Rider

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.

Example Map

Destructive Tendencies Warface – Release the Kraken

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.

Example Map

Fizzy – Tanger

Ranked Categories

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.

2021 Winners

Pegboard Nerds – Purple People Eater

Little Big – UNO

Unranked Categories

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.

Example Maps

Crystal Skies & Danny Olson – Like Water (feat. Jadelyn)

Camellia – KillerToy

Modded Mapping

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.

Example Map

Codly – Lucy, The God of Time

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.

Example Map

DJ Miyosuke – The 15 Sublimit

Lighting Categories

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 Vanilla Lights

The Best Vanilla Lights use ONLY base game mechanics and not only perfectly represent the music, but also add that ‘WOW’ factor when playing.

Example Map

Gawr Gura – REFLECT

Best Vanilla+ Map TWEAKED!

This category will be heavily redefined by the new base game lighting system.

Example Map

Kazmasa (feat. Hatsune Miku & IA) – Phantom’s Wonderland

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.

Example Map

Avenza – Electronic Gin and Tonic

Best Chroma+ Lights

Chroma+ adds environment enhancement to the overall chroma toolbox to create custom experiences that are out of this world.

Example Map

PhaseOne & Kai Wachi – Death Waltz

row of hanging medals with purple ribbons

Frequently Asked Questions

Last updated March 5, 2022

Have a question for The Beasties team that isn’t listed here? Ask us on Discord!

  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.

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