Beatmaps are moved to Loved by a nomination and voting process.
Members of the Project Loved Team called captains regularly nominate beatmaps for a specific game mode. These sets almost always come from submissions from the osu! community.
To submit a beatmap for Loved, please visit the beatmap submission page of the Project Loved website and fill out the form. Upon submitting, you will be able to view your submission under the listing of its respective game mode along with the others. Below are the listings where these submissions can be viewed:
Nominated mapsets are then posted to the Project Loved forum, where community members may vote whether they want the mapset to be Loved or not. Maps reaching a specified threshold percentage of "Yes" votes at their polls' end time will be moved to the Loved category.
There are some very minimal criteria that need to be met for beatmaps to be nominated for Loved. Captains consider a beatmap eligible for the Loved category if:
Although many Pending and Work-in-progress maps meet these criteria, few are voted into the Loved category due to the more selective nomination and voting requirements.
Beatmaps entering the Loved category are required to follow some additional rulesets:
Additionally, in order to keep the audio quality of the song at a reasonable level, beatmap audio files should have an average bitrate of at least 128kbps.
Any problems with these rules are usually sorted out while the map is up for voting.
There are no strict rules governing which maps a captain must nominate for Loved, but generally the nominated maps are very well known and appreciated by the community (as the title "Loved" implies). Sometimes a mapset will also be preferred if it is significantly older than others or contains beatmaps with unique and high-quality mapping styles.
All of the organisation and planning for Project Loved is done in the
#osu-loved channel of the osu!dev Discord server. There is also a
#project-loved channel in the osu! Community Discord server. Any questions, concerns, or suggestions may be directed there.
In addition to the discussion channels mentioned above, the osu!taiko, osu!catch, and osu!mania communities have their own dedicated Discord hubs, which you may join via the following links: