General Gameplay

On the current, 'regular' version of UltraStar Deluxe, you can select 'Play' on the initial menu; when it produces the players, you can rename them to you and your friends' names, using the left and right keys to highlight a given player, backspace to remove the existing 'Player 1'/'Player 2' etc, and simply type in your real names instead.

By doing this, you'll be able to identify players on the high scores menu. Remember, to change the number of players, you can go into 'Options' and then 'Game.'

UltraStar also gives you the option of selecting a difficulty. You may notice that on the 'Hard' level, the notes displayed are much thinner than those in the 'Easy' level:

Easy


Hard


This is because the game tolerates less difference between the notes you're singing and the actual notes you're supposed to sing (a difference of two semitones is tolerated in Easy, 1 semitone in Medium, and no difference is tolerated in Hard). Given that I can't sing very well, I usually go with Easy, and I think your fellow players might find it a bit more fun if they're under the impression they're doing well...! Each to their own, though. If you're playing this with the Operatic Society, the players may want more of a challenge...

Once you've set up the game options, you can scroll through the songs and select one to sing. To search for a particular song, press 'J': a search box will appear, and you can type in the artist or song title (it will also bring up a particular folder that the songs are saved in, if you so wish). The number of songs on the screen will then be limited to those that meet your search critera. Select the song you want, and play it as per normal. Another keyboard shortcut that you may wish to use on the song selection screen is 'R': this will bring up a song at random. You can press this multiple times until something comes up that you want to sing.

Regarding the general gameplay (the following applies to nearly all modes), beyond, of course, the idea to sing the lyrics at the point in which they're highlighted, there are a number of quirks: Firstly, if you hadn't noticed/didn't know already, the notes take the form of a sort of piano scroll. It's a bit hard to read it as sheet music, but you can judge, at the very least, whether the note should be higher or lower than the last one! The aim is to fill the colour of the notes by hitting them correctly. The more you do this, the higher your score. Not all of the lyrics, however, count towards your score. If they appear in Italics, no notes will appear on the screen – this is usually because they are not sung, but instead, rapped or simply spoken. These are called 'free' notes, and you're welcome to talk/rap along if you wish, though it's not necessary. There are also 'golden' notes, which are distinguishable (see the screenshot above for 'Easy' mode) by their shining appearance. Hitting these notes will be worth double the usual amount of points.