Beatmaps are game levels in osu!, like the stages in the DS games. In their most basic form, a beatmap have a song and various hit objects placed according to the rhythm of the music. They can also have a background image, video, and/or storyboard.
You can find beatmaps in the Beatmaps Listing page on osu! web.
Both ranked and approved beatmaps requires approval from two Beatmap Nominators. They can influence the stats on a player's profile which is what makes them different from a pending or graveyarded beatmap.
Ranked beatmaps use the double upwards chevron icon () in the song select screen.
These beatmaps ideally fulfill all of the ranking criteria. This is to ensure that most players can expect a certain kind of standard while playing them.
Approved beatmaps use the check icon () in the song select screen.
The approved status is typically for songs that are over five minutes in length (also known as a marathon), measured with the total drain time of a beatmap. Most approved beatmaps do not have an easy or normal difficulty. However, some creators may uploaded them as separate beatmapsets with identical songs while some are included inside a ranked song, containing ranked beatmaps.
Qualified beatmaps use the check icon () in the song select screen.
These beatmaps are in the last stage of the beatmapping and modding process. Before the beatmap begins playing, a dialoge will display, noting the status of the beatmap will cause:
When a beatmap is qualified, it has passed the ranking criteria and has been checked by two Beatmap Nominators. Qualified beatmaps is the last line of defense as they are required to be in this status for one week before becoming ranked or approved permanently.
During the one week duration, however, QATs are allowed to write up issues with these beatmaps. If this happens, the beatmapset's status will go back to pending and the process starts over again.
Loved beatmaps use the heart icon () in the song select screen.
These beatmaps may not meet the ranking criteria but are loved by the community and thus are regularly added based on community votes. Before the beatmap begins playing, a dialoge will display, noting the status of the beatmap will cause:
This status will give those beatmaps a leaderboard.
To get a beatmap in the loved status, see the forum post: Get your beatmap Loved!.
See also: Beatmap Ranking Procedure
Pending beatmaps use the question mark icon () in the song select screen.
Inactive beatmaps that have been in this category for 4 weeks are automatically moved into the graveyard status.
All pending beatmaps do not affect user statistics.
Graveyarded beatmaps use the question mark icon () in the song select screen.
These beatmaps were initally pending, but are moved to this status because they have not been updated or its thread post was inactive for 4 weeks. These beatmaps cannot be updated until the mapper revives it by clicking the
Revive Beatmap link in their profile, under the category
All graveyarded beatmaps do not affect user statistics.
For the sake of saving digital space for newer beatmaps, osu! will purge graveyarded beatmaps if they have been in this status for a long period of time.