Take a walk through the mapping and lighting mind of Belgian mapper and BeastSaber Editor, Pixelguy!
Q. What inspired you to start mapping?
A. When I just got my first VR headset I wanted my friends to come over and play my favorite game: Beat Saber. One of them wanted to play a map for a specific song that didn’t have a map yet, so I made one. It sucked, and I never released it, but I enjoyed making it and that inspired me to continue.
Q. What are your preferred genres of music to map?
A. Mostly electronic music. Future house, glitch hop, psytrance, dubstep…
Q. Are there any other things besides mapping that you’re involved within the Beat Saber community?
A. For a while I made custom platforms, which I don’t really do anymore because the mod is broken. I also help manage the BeastSaber site, like putting up playlists and such. I also made some models for things like ChroMapper and PlusOneRabbit’s Beat Saber map viewer.
Q. Which of your maps are you most proud of or is your favorite?
A. Bon-no-yu-gi is my favorite one for sure. It’s one of my favorite songs ever, even after mapping it. The reason I like this map is that it used a lot of patterns I hadn’t even thought of experimenting with before. It uses groove walls, figure-8’s, and some unconventional angles. I even sneaked a 45° hit in there, went over most people’s heads ;). I had a blast mapping it. I don’t really like the light show of this map though. Even though it’s one of my better ones, I didn’t enjoy making it because I had no inspiration or motivation.
Q. If there was an Amazon.com-style “Recommended Mappers” section, who would you show up under as “If you like [so and so], you’d also like [your name]”?
Q. Do you have a signature pattern that you use in all/most of your maps?
A. Yes, It’s a combination of two triples that I use whenever I get the chance. I first used it in my map for “Jacob Tillberg – Ghosts”. I love it when other people use it in maps too, whether it came from me or not.
Q. What, in your opinion, is the single most challenging thing for a new mapper to master in order to be successful?
A. Having good flow and vision while still keeping your map interesting. A lot of new mappers use a lot of face notes or uncomfortable wrist resets in order to make their map interesting, but most of the time it just ends up feeling uncomfortable to play. In my case, my old maps always flowed very well, but they were very generic and pretty boring to play.
Q. What style of maps do you most enjoy playing when you play for fun?
A. Techy maps mostly, but I can enjoy some dancey maps too.
Q. Do you believe that the mapping ‘meta’ is currently in a healthy state? If not, what do you feel would help to bring the ‘meta’ to a good place?
A. Down-out notes are too often used as a forehand hit, while up-in notes almost always get used as backhand hits. In my opinion, it feels much better the other way around. I respect that some, if not most, people enjoy it the way it is right now though. But I never stop there, now I have several ideas for further development. This does not apply to notes, but to the development of gambling for Canadian casinos, we have already concluded several agreements with the best paying online casino that are concerned about the quality of the software on their sites.
Q. Is there a mapping practice that most mappers frown upon, that you happen to think can be used really well in the right hands?
A. Bomb mapping seems to be something most people are “afraid” to use, while people like Skeelie and Shappy have proven time and time again that bombs can be used very effectively and can be very fun.
Q. Are there any practices from “Ye Olde Days” of mapping that you’d like to see make a reappearance?
A. I feel like the current meta has become too strict about hits at a 90° angle. In my opinion, they can be fun when used right.
Q. What does your mapping process look like?
A. The order of what I do first depends on the song. If it’s a song where I can already envision a light show when hearing it, I’d most likely do the lights first. Most of the time, the map takes priority though. I often start by mapping the chorus, because that’s what I usually have the most inspiration for.
Q. Is there anything else you’d like the Beat Saber community to know about you, your mapping style, or your thoughts on the game itself?
A. Don’t be afraid to start mapping/lighting/whatever you want. Just because there are people that are better and more experienced than you, doesn’t mean you can’t become just as good as them.
Have questions for Pixelguy? Hit them up in the comments!
This interview has been lightly edited for spelling, grammar, and clarity.