Djent Game

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For Players that play rhythmic music, Conductors that show what to play and also for one drummer responsible for not making the piece too long.

Setup

Choose the drummer-accompanist and the conductors for the game (these two roles will be quite restricted). The rest of the participants should have instruments able to play sounds with clear attack and not blending with the sound of the drummer (body percussion possible). There should be at least one person in each role, for the easiest result, have one conductor, one drummer and multiple players.

The drummer chosen for this game serves as a referee and will be tasked to set the convincing tempo for the whole group. Apart from good rhythm, drummer should be comfortable in music gaming environment.

Place yourself so every player sees conductor(s)' hands. It's best when Players agree to play one note each (and a chord for instruments that are more quiet than others). Players might agree on notes to play (for example such that form a chord) or decide to play by ear. This is up to participants as these activity rules regulate only the rhythm of music.

Gameplay instructions

Drummer

During the game, drummer will play a clear rhythm on 4/4. Start with pattern exposition and then make a clear fill leading to the start of the challenging part of the game. At the beginning of the game the tempo might be quite slow, and then if no mistakes are made, drummer should speed up a bit, and make consecutive increases of tempo until players or conductors start to make mistakes.

The more cooperative version could be timed, and then it's up to the drummer to signal the ending of the piece.

Conductor

With their hands conductors will indicate numbers for players to play. Conductors should change the number only in the moment when players are not playing it. In the simplest variant one conductor shows a number with one hand.

Players

Players play sounds that always fall on one of four quarternotes in the bar set by the drummer. Starting with the beginning marked by the fill-in, players play groups of n quaternotes separated by single quaternote pauses. n is a number shown by conductor's gesture, so it's always between 1 and 5. If there are more conductors, you "read" displayed numbers from left to right and then return to the number shown by the first hand of the first conductor (exposed most to the left). If there is one conductor that uses one hand, you just play what is shown and hope number changes will be well timed.

Game end

Up to the drummer, although conductors may suggest ending with additional body language.

Or when everything falls apart.


Variants

This game is easy to set up as competitive between the team of conductors and team of players. But it's hard to do it in a balanced way. An additional constraint for conductors might be that none should show the same number as another, and Players might stop playing after they make a mistake until there is a predefined number of them. Usually, you play it cooperatively (as in the basic idea proposed by odolany).

If the skill lets you, you can reduce the number of players by merging the roles (like "conductor-player") up to the point when it's a nice drumming practice of comping quarternote groups with a 4/4 beat.

A considerably more difficult variant is with adding eight-note pauses between accent groups instead of quarternote pauses.

Examples

Here is an example of a cooperative, 3-player, eight-note variant with mixed roles: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tW7u6dpfnfA

And here for the basic, acoustic version suitable for community music game meetings:


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