# Mapping

Too many anime maps? Not enough anime maps?
Take matters into your own hands and learn to map here!

INFO

If you have feedback on how we can improve the mapping resources fill out this form!
You can also visit #mapping-discussion on the Beat Saber Modding Group Discord to get involved!

# Mapping Quick Start

  1. Download the necessary tools for mapping: an audio editor and a map editor.
  2. Set up your audio file, find and confirm the BPM, and export in OGG format.
  3. Set up your song in your mapping editor (steps vary by editor but here's the user guide for MMA2).
  4. Get mapping! Review basic mapping practices before you start. Playtest your own work early and often while mapping.
  5. Get lighting! Review basic lighting information. Simple manual lighting is easier than you think!
  6. Get your map playtested! Third-party playtesting via the BSMG Discord is highly recommended to get constructive feedback and to get past your own “map blindness."
  7. Once your song has been mapped, lighted, and playtested you’re ready to release your song to the world on Beat Saver.

# Video Tutorials

Text guides aren't your thing? Checkout these video series!

Remember:

The text guides on this wiki are more up to date as it is easier and quicker to change.

WARNING

Benny and Freeek use older editors in their tutorials (Mediocre Mapper and EditSaber). The UI and some processes have changed in the latest recommended editor, MMA2 but, the rest of the content is great!

# Audio Editing Resources

Before mapping, you need to get your audio file ready so that it works with your map editor. This section will walk you through how to set up and edit your audio file using a free program called Audacity.

  • Basic Audio Setup - Can't make a map without audio. Learn how to setup your audio for easy mapping!
  • Advanced Audio Editing - A deeper dive in adjusting audio files such as making shorter versions or working with variable BPM.

# Map Editing Resources

# Community Editors

WARNING

Community editors often have more features and don't require a VR headset, but they can be buggy, so use with caution.

# Mediocre Map Assistant 2

MMA2 is the most feature rich 3D editor and is used by the majority of the mapping community.

# BeatMapper.app

A 3D editor that runs in the browser, allowing anyone with a web browser to map. It works best for standard mapping without any extensions, but new features are being added.

# ChroMapper - Coming Soon

A 3D editor that has stellar support for lighting, Chroma RGB, and shares similar assets with Beat Saber, allowing for a more accurate preview. ChroMapper is currently in closed beta with no planned public release date.

Interested in making your own editor or converter?

You may find the SongCore readme page and the Beatmap Schemas helpful!

# Official Editor

The official editor is developed and supported by Beat Games and pre-installed with the Steam VR or Oculus PC versions of Beat Saber. It makes playtesting very convenient with one-click access to your work-in-progress in-game. The official editor is 2D and requires good visualization skills to translate well to a 3D play space, which can be challenging for new mappers. The vast majority of mappers use a Community Editor.

  • To access, launch the editor from within Beat Saber in your HMD or use fpfc launch parameters to open directly from your PC
  • Check out Megalon's Official Editor Tutorial Video for an overview of standard mapping!

# Additional Mapping Tools

  • BeatMapperTools by Darkuni
    A utility for users of Mediocre Mapper and Mediocre Map Assistant 2 to easily convert, test, and package their maps
  • +1 Rabbit's Mapping Tools by +1 Rabbit
    A suite of tools for mappers using new format .dat files that includes:
    • Schema Fixer: Easily fix maps made in Mediocre Mapper Mk4.1 and Mk5 for upload to Beatsaver
    • Tempo Changer: Change the BPM of an entire map and shift block placements accordingly
    • Offset Remover: Removes editor offset and snaps notes/obstacles/events to common precisions to try and mitigate floating point error
    • Note Sorter: Sorts unordered notes/obstacles/events in the map file to fix stack spawning
  • BS Viewer by +1 Rabbit
    A convienient way to checkout how your map might look in game without the game.
    • IOS and Safari are currently not supported
  • BPM Saber, by Zevdg
    Only works on old format .json files. Change the BPM of an entire map and shift block placements accordingly
  • BPM Saber, by Elliotttate
    A utility for finding the BPM of a song
  • osu! Editor Timing Tutorial by Fayhe

# Mapping Practices

"You have to know the rules before you can break them."
~ Uninstaller

There is no holy bible of mapping but this section of the wiki includes a lot of tribal knowledge from the community on best practices at all levels of mapping. Our advice is to follow these rules until you're comfortable with your skills and then get creative, experiment, and innovate!

  • Basic Mapping - All new mappers need to read this, no exceptions!
  • Intermediate Mapping - A more in-depth look at many mapping topics (coming soon... ask in #mapping-discussion if you want more info!)
  • Extended Mapping - Mapping Extensions, Extra Characteristics, and 360°/90° mapping

# Mapper Roles

To apply for the Mapper role on the Beat Saber Modding Group Discord you must have released three solid/playable maps (collaborations are acceptable) and complete the Mapper Role Submission Form. Your application and maps may take a decent amount of time to be reviewed and approved.

# Modding & Ranking

Maps that meet specific Ranking Criteria and go through an intensive review process called “modding” have the potential to become ranked, awarding players Performance Points (PP) toward global leaderboards. More information and an in-depth FAQ is available on the ScoreSaber Discord

  • Prior to requesting ranking, mappers should thoroughly review the ranking criteria and metadata standards and have their map modded by a knowledgeable source.

Want an even more detailed look?

Review the Ranking Team Handbook for some of the more ambiguous ranking considerations.

  • Once your map has been modded and revised, it’s ready to be submitted via the ScoreSaber Discord for review by the ranking team (which involves additional rounds of strict modding and revision).
  • If a ranking team member deems the map acceptable it will be added to the ranking request queue to be voted on by the full ranking team.

# Lighting Practices

A map is not finished until some form of lighting is included. Lighting can range from very basic to incredibly detailed using additional mods to enable more features.

  • Basic Lighting - Learn the various aspects to lighting your map manually
  • Advanced Lighting - Is Basic Lighting not enough? Learn more advanced techniques! (coming soon... ask in #mapping-discussion if you want more info!)

Below are additional lighting resources as we migrate over to the wiki pages.

Lightmap adds automated lights to your map. It is integrated into Mediocre Map Assistant 2 and can be accessed in the error checker menu. However, creating simple manual lighting is not difficult and will always be better at expressing the atmosphere of the song than lightmap.

# Playtesting

Testing your work is a critical part of mapping. Testing as you work helps you adjust for major playability issues and get a feel for your map. Third-party or “outside” playtesting is when someone other than yourself tests your pre-release map and provides constructive feedback and is helpful in highlighting issues to which you may be "map blind."

WARNING

You DO NOT need to upload your map to Beat Saver in order for you or anyone else to test.

  • If your map is using the 1.0 song format (your files are .json and .ogg) you must convert your map using one of several available tools like Songe Converter by lolPants or BeatMapper Tools by Darkuni. Update your editor to MMA2 or BeatMapper. See Community Editors for links.
  • If your map is using the 2.0 song format (your files are .dat and .ogg/.egg) you’re ready to test.

# Testing on a PC

Follow these steps to test any of your maps made with a community editor using PC-based VR.

  1. If your WIP song folder isn’t already in Beat Saber_Data\CustomWIPLevels then place a copy there.
  2. Access your map in-game via the CustomWIPLevels category in the bottom song pack menu. Use practice mode to play (the small button next to the yellow play button).

NOTE

  • You will need to have the SongCore mod installed in order to see the CustomWIPLevels category.
  • Having duplicate map files in CustomLevels and CustomWIPLevels can cause problems.

# Testing on a Quest

Follow these steps to test any of your maps made with a community editor using an Oculus Quest. You must have SideQuest and BMBF installed.

  1. Zip up the song as normal, only zipping the files and not the folder itself
  2. Connect your Oculus Quest to the PC via USB and keep SideQuest open (Optionally, you can turn on Wireless mode to remove it after)
  3. BMBF must be open on the Oculus Quest for the connection to succeed
  4. Look at the top of SideQuest, which will give you the IP to get into BMBF
  5. Type into any web browser: "192.168.X.XXX:50000" with X being replaced with your IP
  6. Drag and drop the files into BMBF's upload page (indicated by /main/upload at the end of the link)
  7. Once uploaded, click Sync to Beat Saber at the top right corner of the page
  8. Access your map in-game via the CustomWIPLevels category in the bottom song pack menu. Use practice mode to play (the small button next to the yellow play button).

TIP

If after deleting an old copy of a map and reuploading it with a new version on a quest still results with the old version being played, rename the zip file before uploading it through BMBF.

# Community / Third Party Testing

The #testplays channel in the Beat Saber Modding Group Discord makes it easy to have your work checked by knowledgeable mappers. Playtesters will provide constructive feedback on how to improve your map in either video or text format in a DM or in the #mapping-discussion channel.

  1. Create a compressed .zip file of the individual song files (not the song folder).
  2. Upload your map to #testplays using the following format:
  • Map: The name and artist of your map
  • Length: The length of the song
  • BPM: The BPM of the song
  • Difficulty: Which difficulties are included
  • Feedback: Any requests for feedback (specific difficulties to be tested, things to look for etc.)
  • Status: What state is the map in? (i.e., First draft complete, no lights; 1:45 mapped; release candidate w/ lighting; etc.)
  1. Testers will usually look at your map within 1-7 days and will use a number of reaction emojis (listed in #testplays pinned posts) to track testing status.

Remember: If you make changes after posting or getting feedback

  • React with a 🛑 :octagonal_sign: to indicate stop testing this version
    == or ==
  • Delete the testplay posting!

You can copy and paste the following template into Discord:

**Map:**
**Length:**
**BPM:**
**Difficulty:**
**Feedback:**
**Status:**

# Publishing Songs

Once your song has been mapped, lighted, and playtested and it’s a finished product you’re ready to release it to the world!

# BeatSaver

BeatSaver is the public repository for all custom Beat Saber maps. Songs must be in the 2.0 song format (files are .dat and .ogg/.egg/.wav) to be uploaded.

WARNING

Please DO NOT upload an incomplete WIP map to BeatSaver!
Uploading to BeatSaver equates to "Putting it on the store shelf" and should only be your final version.
See the Playtesting section for instructions on testing your map.

# How to Release a Map

  1. Create an account on BeatSaver. If you are not receiving a verification email, drop into #mapping-discussion for assistance.
  2. Click the Upload link in the top-right.
  3. Add your BeatSaver map name and map description. Only the map name is searchable so be sure to include song name, song artist, and other terms that might make it easier to find your map.

TIP

Use "tags" like (Chroma), (OneSaber), or (Mapping Extensions) if your map uses some special modifications or characteristics you want to highlight.

  1. Add your .zip file and click the Upload button.”

WARNING

Map files currently cannot be updated on BeatSaver. If you need to upload a new version of your map you will need to delete the old one and re-post.

# BeatSaver Troubleshooting

Here are solutions for some common errors when uploading a Beatmap.
Encountered something not listed here? Drop into #mapping-discussion for assistance.

Something went wrong! Try again later.
This is the default error message, causes include:

  • An upload that is close to the 15 MB limit. Reduce the audio export quality slightly to make space.
  • Unsupported characters are present in a file. Make sure your metadata and bookmarks don't contain special characters such as, Japanese (日本語/にほんご), Chinese (汉语/漢語), Arabic (اَلْعَرَبِيَّةُ‎), and accents (Ä/é/ó).

Field ._customData._customEnviroment cannot be blank.

  • Your files are not compliant the map schema. See Schema Change for solutions.

Beatmap zip contains an illegal file!

  • Usually caused by extra/unsupported files, such as gifs, in the zip.

Beatmap already exists!

  • The exact map files were uploaded previously. You must change something small in your map (i.e., remove a light block, save the map, replace the light block, and save again) to be able to upload.

Beatmap does not contain an info.dat file!

  • Usually caused by having the files in a subfolder. You need to zip the files instead of the folder. How to Video Or use the handy export button in your editor instead. NOTE: MMA2's export button does not include contributor images in the zip.

One or more beatmap difficulty files cannot be found!

  • You might have forgotten to include all of your difficultiy files are in the zip.
  • A difficulty's "_beatmapFilename" in the info.dat might be using a different file name than what is present in the folder.
  • A deleted difficulty is still being referenced in your info.dat file. Check to make sure you do not have unintended difficulties in the "_difficultyBeatmaps" cluster of each present characteristc.

Beatmap could not be parsed!

  • This could be caused by extreme server load. Try again later or ask in #mapping-discussion.

# BeatSaver Data Schema Change - October 27, 2019

BeatSaver now enforces a schema in order for your maps to be uploaded, of which public MediocreMapper is not compliant with. The most breaking change happened in the difficulty data files, where MM-specific fields were moved inside a _customData object.

Resolution #1:
Switch to the Mediocre Map Assistant 2 editor. Open each difficulty file and save it to correct the schema. Use MMA2 going forward.

Resolution #2:
Use the Schema Updater Utility by +1 Rabbit to fix your files before uploading. Then switch to a supported editor.

Resolution #3 (The Hard Way):
If you wish to fix this yourself, here is a quick template which shows you where everything should go in order for your map to be compliant with BeatSaver's new schema.

Alternatively, since _customData is NOT a required field, you can go ahead and remove everything that would be placed in there, and upload that result.

{
  "_version": "2.0.0",
  "_notes": [],
  "_obstacles": [],
  "_events": [],
  "_customData": {
    "_bpmChanges": [],
    "_bookmarks": [],
    "_time": 0
  }
}

To be compliant with the new schema, please also find and remove or fill in any blank fields in your Info.dat or difficulty files.

# BeastSaber

BeastSaber is a song review and curation site with a social side for member profiles, forums, news, and tutorials. All songs published on BeatSaver are mirrored to BeastSaber within 10-15 minutes. Additionally, maps deleted from BeatSaver may take up to a day to be removed from BeastSaber.

# Credits

Over thirty different mapping guides and tutorials have been combined into this wiki so that it can be maintained by the community as a whole. Many many MANY thanks to the mappers who blazed this trail and contributed content. Checkout the whole list here!