Crackin' DJ

From Sega Retro



Crackin' DJ
System(s): Sega NAOMI
Publisher: Sega
Genre: Action

Number of players: 1
Release Date RRP Code
Arcade (NAOMI)
¥? 840-0043C

This teeny-tiny article needs some work. You can help us by expanding it.

Crackin' DJ (クラッキンDJ) is a Sega NAOMI arcade game released in 2000. It uses special turntable controllers. It was followed by Crackin' DJ Part 2 in 2001. Sega Logistics Service announced it would end service on Crackin' DJ arcade machines on March 31, 2017.[2][3]



Lesson Tune crackindj.jpg Level-0: Lesson Tune
Code Number 003 crackindj.jpg Level-1: Code Number 003
Chocolate crackindj.jpg Level-2: Chocolate
Hangover crackindj.jpg Level-3: Hangover
Glamorous Fingers crackindj.jpg Level-4: Glamorous Fingers
Nightmare crackindj.jpg Level-5: Nightmare
Cool Hand crackindj.jpg Level-6: Cool Hand
Hipster crackindj.jpg Level-7: Hipster
Snob crackindj.jpg Level-8: Snob
Black Temptation crackindj.jpg Level-9: Black Temptation
Road To The Desert crackindj.jpg Level-10: Road To The Desert
Double Moon crackindj.jpg Level-11: Double Moon
During The Night crackindj.jpg Level-12: During The Night
Thrill Of Ecstasy crackindj.jpg Level-13: Thrill Of Ecstasy
Hot It Up crackindj.jpg Level-14: Hot It Up
In Chaos crackindj.jpg Level-15: In Chaos
Rumble Storm crackindj.jpg Level-16: Rumble Storm
Take It So Hard crackindj.jpg Level-17: Take It So Hard
Bonus Tune crackindj.jpg Bonus Tune: OutRun


General overview

Crackin' DJ began life as an attempt to capitalize on the popularity of rhythm games in the late 90's, with similar Sega examples being Samba de Amigo and Mograpper. Hisao Oguchi was instructed to produce another hit rhythm game, but due to his initial lack of interest, development lasted roughly 2 years. This resulted in a poorly timed release, as the rhythm game craze had at this point declined, and the game was deemed a financial failure.[4]

Various possible other reasons for the game's poor performance have been suggested, from the userbase's difficulty managing a full-size turntable controller[4], to the game's presentation not properly conveying the fun to be had, both of which were addressed in Crackin' DJ Part 2, such as with a more vibrant and informative tutorial song.[5]

The game was designed to be different from conventional DJ games, which were mainly focused on timing, whereas Crackin' DJ embraced the musicality of the turntables with various unique sounds and grooves. It also allows for improvisations, which were at one point planned to be added to the point scores, but it was eventually left up to the player to decide if it was a cool ad-lib or not.[6]

The musicians

By now, I was thoroughly enjoying the Crackin' Project. But, if said that to Kanno, I'd be admitting defeat. I wouldn't change my "I don't want to do it" stance, not at this point. Well, at the end of the day, it was a fun project. Plus, I found out rap is good, plus, I acquired some know-how on rap recording, plus, I got a handle on breakbeats, plus, I learned how fun it is to break apart a song for a remix, and to top it off, I learned the value of hip-hop, which is lot of positives (but it was tough).

Hiroshi Kawaguchi, ref[7]

Development of Crackin' DJ officially started in early 1999, as composer Mitsuharu Fukuyama recalls it coinciding with when he joined Sega Software R&D Dept. 3, him being instantly assigned to work on the game.[8] Another composer working on the game early on was Taihei Sato,[9] though as he was reassigned to Sega Rosso, only contributed a few songs (some of which weren't used until Crackin' DJ Part 2).

As this was the first rhythm game developed by AM3/Hitmaker, the department's most famous composer Hiroshi "Hiro" Kawaguchi was asked to join the project, but declined, partially to focus on Air Trix and Rent a Hero No. 1,[7] but also due to not enjoying hip-hop music and being unfamiliar with DJ culture,[9] hence the title was handed off to Mitsuharu Fukuyama. However, as development was struggling to keep up with the ever-expanding sequences and rules, Hiro was eventually forced by director Kenji Kanno to join the project and research hip-hop and DJs.[7] This mainly involved listening to hip-hop CDs, attending events, watching videos and inviting a professional DJ to demonstrate in the Sega conference room.[6] Hiro also bought a turntable, experimenting with it for 2 to 3 hours a day, gradually gaining respect for it as a musical instrument.[7]

Hiro wasn't the only one without prior hip-hop experience. Mitsuharu Fukuyama primarily came from a Jazz/Fusion background, so while Hiro had to stick to strict hip-hop on various songs (e.g. redoing Code Number 003 from its earlier techno arrangement[10]), Fukuyama had more free reign to bring a uniquely fresh take to hip-hop.[6] This was also the case for Kentaro Kobayashi, who was asked to join development later on amid creating a track for Dennou Senki Virtual-On Remixes Oratorio Tangram, when a large ensemble of songs had already been completed.[6][11]

Production credits

Main article: Crackin' DJ/Production credits.

Magazine articles

Main article: Crackin' DJ/Magazine articles.

Physical scans

CrackinDJ NAOMI JP Cart.jpg


Games in the Crackin' DJ Series
Crackin' DJ (2000) | Crackin' DJ Part 2 (2001)
Crackin' DJ related media
Crackin' DJ Original Soundtrack (2000) | Crackin' DJ Remix (2000) | Crackin' DJ Remix Vinyl Vol. 1 (2001) | Crackin' DJ Remix Vinyl Vol. 2 (2001) | Crackin' DJ Part 2 Original Sound Track (2001) | Crackin' DJ Complete Album (2010)