How to Use a USB Xbox 360 Dance Mat with Windows 10

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This guide will explain how to install a dance mat for use as a control pad in Windows 10.  The mat will work natively with games that support Direct Input controllers such as the popular PC dancing game Stepmania.  it will also be possible to use a program such as Xpadder (Paid) or JoyToKey (Free) to map the dance mat inputs to keyboard inputs so that virtually any PC game can be played using a dance mat!

Warning

Following this tutorial involves installing a 3rd-Party unsigned driver.  There is no support available for this driver.  There is every chance that this driver could cause your computer to blue-screen. 

Only follow this guide if you understand the risks and are prepared to deal with things if something goes wrong.  Please back up all important data on your computer and create a system restore point before continuing.  GoshDarnGames is in no way liable if something goes wrong!

Installing this driver is recommended only for advanced users!

The Dance Mat Used for this Tutorial

Konami DDR Mat

A compatible mat might look something like this.

This tutorial should work with the dance mats released for the Xbox 360 version of Dance Dance Revolution. 

The tutorial may not work with all mats like this so be sure of your seller’s returns policies before purchasing one.

The mat I used for this tutorial is not an official Konami mat but looks the same as the image.  I would assume that any USB mat compatible with the Xbox 360 should work.

Installing The Driver

The first step is to unplug any USB control pads connected to your system.  This will ensure the driver doesn’t interfere with them and also make the dance mat easier to spot in your Device Manager.

Note that this tutorial assumes that you don’t have any conflicting 3rd party drivers installed.  The official Microsoft Xbox 360 drivers will not interfere so don’t worry about them.

Plug In Your Dance Mat

Your dance mat should be plugged in during the installation.

Dance Mat in Device Manager

The dance mat will appear as an unknown device in “Other Devices”

Open your device manager.

The dance mat should appear as an unknown device in the Other Devices section of the Device Manager.

The dance mat may be recognised as an official Xbox 360 game pad but it is still necessary to install the custom driver.

The 3rd party driver is required because the Microsoft driver will treat the dance mat as a normal Xbox 360 control pad with a D-Pad and 4 buttons.  This is unsuitable because the driver does not allow two opposite directions to be input simultaneously.  Games like Stepmania require up and down or left and right to be input together to perform a jump.

The unofficial XBCD driver allows us to configure the dance mat so that each input is treated as a separate button press rather than a D-pad input.

Download the Driver

Version 0.2.7 of XBCD can be downloaded here:

http://vba-m.com/forum/Thread-xbcd-0-2-7-release-info-updates-will-be-posted-here

You just need to grab the .exe from the very top of the post (The mediafire link).

Note: This is a 3rd party driver and I accept no liability if it causes damage to your computer – INSTALL AT YOUR OWN RISK

Restart Your Computer With Advanced Settings

The XBCD driver is unsigned.  By default Windows 10 does not allow the user to install unsigned drivers but it is possible to reboot your computer that will allow the driver to be installed:

http://www.howtogeek.com/167723/how-to-disable-driver-signature-verification-on-64-bit-windows-8.1-so-that-you-can-install-unsigned-drivers/?PageSpeed=noscript

Install XBCD with the Default Settings

Windows Security Warning

You will get a warning like this when installing the driver.

Install the XBCD driver with the default settings.

You will get a security warning during the install.

It’s probably not a great idea to install random drivers from the Internet…

Reassign the Dance Mat Device in the Device Manager

Device Manager After XBCD Is Installed

The dance mat will appear like this after the driver has been installed.

The dance mat will appear as XBCD Xbox 360 Controller in the Human Interface Devices device manager.  This means the XBCD driver has detected as a 360 compliant control pad (hooray!).  If the device does not appear as such don’t give up yet – the next step may still apply.

By default the XBCD driver will treat the dance mat as a normal Xbox 360 controller.  Luckily XBCD includes an alternative driver that is geared towards dance mats.  All we have to do is use the Device Manager to tell Windows which version of the driver we want to use.

 

 

 

Update Driver Software

Right Click on the device and select “Update Driver Software”

Right click on the dance mat in the Device Manager and select Update Driver Software.

 

 

 

 

 

Browse My Computer for the Driver

Select ‘Browse my computer for driver software’

Select ‘Browse my computer for driver software’ from the dialogue box that opens.

 

 

 

 

 

Pick the Driver Manually

Pick the Driver Manually

Select ‘Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer’.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Untick "Show Compatible Hardware"

Untick “Show Compatible Hardware”

Untick “Show compatible hardware” to show all devices.

 

 

 

 

 

Select Xbox 360 Foot Pad

Select Xbox 360 Foot Pad

In the XBCD Project category select XBCD Xbox 360 Foot Pad.

 

 

 

 

 

This warning will be shown

This warning will be shown

A warning will be shown.  This warning can be ignored if you’re in the business of ignoring Windows warning messages.

 

 

 

Success!

Success!

All being well you should see this message to confirm the successful installation. 

 

 

 

 

Configure XBCD

XBCD Setup

Search Windows for the XBCD Setup Utility

You can now run the XBCD set-up utility to configure the dance mat.

Search for XBCD in the windows start menu and it should appear.

Right click the utility and click “Run as Administrator” – XBCD Setup needs admin rights to run but doesn’t ask for them.

 

 

 

Test the Dance Mat Buttons

XBCD Set Up Utility

XBCD Set Up Utility

When you press buttons on your dance mat the corresponding buttons should light up blue in the XBCD set up utility.

 

 

 

How XBCD Works

Beside each of the Xbox 360 controller inputs in the set up utility you can see a button number (e.g. “B12”).  XBCD will map the inputs from the dance mat to the button we specify using the Direct Input API.

The great thing about mapping the buttons like this is it allows us to press 2 opposite directions on the dance mat simultaneously.  This is essential for jumps in Step Mania and impossible using the official Microsoft drivers.

Mapping the Buttons

Adjust Number of Buttons

Use the “Windows” tab to adjust the number of buttons.

Before assigning the buttons it is a good idea to increase the range of buttons that we are allowed to use.  This is not essential for Step Mania but will be useful if you want to use the dance mat for something unconventional such as movement controls for a First Person Shooter, which will be explained in a future tutorial.

The number of buttons can be set on the Windows tab.  Note that you will need to unplug and replug your dance mat after you have edited the number of buttons.

Download the Button Config

XBCD Button Config

Configure XBCD to use the highest number buttons.

In order to map all the buttons you can download this handy config file and load it in XBCD:

https://www.goshdarngames.com/dance-mat-config/dancepad-24-buttons.xgi

To load it use the Open button at the bottom of the XBCD set up utility.

This will tell XBCD to use the highest number buttons (of the 24 we set earlier).

Using the highest control pad button numbers is advantageous later if we want to play games like First Person Shooters using the dance mat to move and a hand-held controller to shoot.  Many single-player games allow input to come from more than one controller simultaneously so you can use a dance mat at the same time as a controller.  Using the highest button numbers available reduces the chances that a conflict will occur between the controllers – i.e. a button on the dance mat already being mapped to an action we want the hand held controller to do.  This will become clearer in future tutorials on how to use the dance mat with various games!

Final Test

Final Test

Opposite inputs should light up simultaneously.

All being well your dance mat should now work like a normal controller in Windows.  It should be possible to press 2 or more buttons simultaneously.  You can test this using the XBCD set up utility – simply press the buttons and see if their inputs light up.

I’m planning on making tutorials on how to use the dance mat for games such as First Person Shooters.  I might also make some games designed with dance mats in mind in the future.

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