Tuesday, February 21, 2012

VGM Of The Day #9: Star Parodier: Level Four Music

After a few days of no updates, I'm back once again with another theme and instead of sharing a theme some of you may know, I picked one from a game that I pretty much know that very few people outside of Japan would have known or played.

Star Parodier is what they call a Cute 'Em Up. These shooters do things a little differently where instead of going into space and space stations shooting down hundreds of space stations, it replaces it with the cute, cartoon like sprites hence Cute 'Em Up.

I bought this game on the virtual console cause I heard so many good things about it. As soon as I played it, I thought it was brilliant because of it was different. The game kept me guessing at what it was going to throw at me next. Giant flying trains, giant fish, snake charmer that controls three different snakes and A GIANT FREAKING SNOWMAN THAT THROWS SNOWBALLS AT YOU all of these are bosses in the game. In other shooters it would be just another spaceship or robot variant shooting lasers and projectiles.

Of course the game had some great tunes to listen to while playing and this happens to be my absolute favorite. This level is a snow/ice level, the very same level where you face the giant snow man. If the boss wasn't awesome enough this song should cinch it. The reason I liked this song was because all the levels had calm level themes, which was nice, but this one had energy to it. It is a good song to show that you are at the half way point and it's getting serious from here.

Overall it is a great song in game few have heard of, if you have heard of it and maybe even played it major nerd props for you. If you haven't you should check it out, it's only 900 points on the virtual console.

 Note: This song was not uploaded by me but done by JiggyGF

Also note that VGM of the day is going on an official hiatus as I need to make a list of what future songs are going to be because I am making this up as I go along and I think a list would make better posts as well as make me more organized. Luckily i have other things plan such as rants and reviews so we will see what happens.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

VGM Of The Day #8: Pokemon Red/Blue/Yellow: Silph Co

Today we are looking at a theme everyone who grew up when I did will undoubtedly know, and that is the Silph Co theme from Pokemon Red/Blue/Yellow. Pokemon was a huge part of elementary school growing up, as you all may remember. Every kid who had a Gameboy came to school and showed off their party to anyone willing to look. Of course the teachers didn't like it, but, when you really think about it Pokemon was like a unrealized learning tool. Even though we didn't really think about it back then, we were organizing our party, carefully assigning four attacks we were limited to and leveling up while paying attention to level and stats. Well that's enough rambling, let's look at Silph Co.

Silph Co, for me, is the most memorable part of Pokemon Red/Blue. Sure before this you went through two caves, a Cruise Ship, Pokemon Tower and the underground basement of a casino filled with Team Rocket, but, nothing up to this point, or even after compared to Silph Co. Silph Co was a huge twoer located in Saffron City that has been taken hostage by Team Rocket. A lot of the buildings including the gym is blocked off by Team Rocket, making it a mandatory to complete the game. Silph Co is a huge  tower that consists of 11 floors each one filled with maze like corridors, items to pick up, teleportation tiles that take you to different areas in the building and team rocket grunts trying to take you down. A monumental part of the game needs a great theme and the one used delivers.

The Silph Co theme is like a tension rollercoaster; as from the very beggining the theme ascends like a pressure chamber  while at the same time you ascend the tower taking out Team Rocket members one by one; reaching the top to face Giovanni. This theme has been stuck in my head for so long probably because this part of the game takes so long; making the theme play over and over and over again until it is installed in your brain, but I don't mind because it ended up being my favorite in the game. See what a little repetition does, it make a memorable theme.

Note: Once again this song was not uploaded by me but done by this guy.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

VGM Of The Day #7 Chrono Trigger: Tyrano's Lair

Another day, another song that belongs to a fantastic soundtrack. Chrono Trigger is a JRPG that even JRPG haters seem to love because it was a JRPG way ahead of it's time for a number of reasons, but I am not going to go on about that. Instead we are going to look at one of it's greatest songs.

The second time you arrive during the prehistoric period, you come to find out that Ayla is planning an assault on the Tyrano Lair to take on Azala for the second and final time. You arrive at the island that is surrounded by lava with the lair towering over the party, you enter the Tyrano's Lair and this masterpiece of a song plays

The song begins with a great organ piece to start the tension, while also telling you that this is going be just as big as going through Magus's castle. After all that buildup, the next section takes over with a nice combination of trumpet, guitar, bass and drums. A great part because not only does it keep up the tension but adds in excitement to go along with all the fights with the reptiles. After that the ending of the song quietly ends off the song and loops back to the middle section.

This song is a perfect way to give the intense emotions needed for the lair. The only thing that could make this section better is if they used this theme in all the fights, I remember some fights did, but I feel like this song should not be interrupted by the battle music except for the bosses. I don't know, maybe I am just be picky.

Note: Once again I did not upload the song, it was uploaded by SupraDarky

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

VGM Of The Day #6: Final Fantasy IV: Theme Of Love

The SNES version which is the original

The DS version of the song

In the celebration of Valentines Day, I thought it would be nice to share the fantastic love theme from Final Fantasy IV. Final Fantasy IV was a groundbreaking game for the time because it was the first JRPG to have a story with this much depth. Add that with the fleshed out characters, plot twists, emotional moments and music to match every situation.

The Theme Of love is a song dedicated to the romance between Cecil and Rosa. They go through quite a lot in the course of the game like Cecil having to find a sand pearl to cure Rosa of a nasty desert fever, her being captured by Golbez and later being rescued, Kain being brainwashed by Golbez Multiple times and of course saving the planet from a evil being on the moon. Their relationship was kinda hard to portray from text and 16 bit sprites, so, this song had to do a lot of the work and it did without even breaking a sweat. This piece is so amazing with the combination of harp and violin and the melancholy feel; it's no wonder how it got it's name. This song has such an impact that apparently it has been known to be taught to children in japan for music class. Granted Japan has gaming more submerged in it's culture, but that is still pretty cool.

Anyway, whether you are with someone today or are forever alone, Happy Valentines Day.

Note: the songs were not uploaded by me but were done by Supradarky and Peyserconly.

Monday, February 13, 2012

VGM Of The Day #5: M.U.S.H.A: Full Metal Fighter

Back in the 90's there were two consoles at war with each other till the death, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and the Sega Genesis. For the most part they were evenly matched, but in one area there was practically no contest. The soundchip in the SNES blew anything the Genesis had out of the water. if you don't believe me, let's take a look at Guiles Theme from Street Fighter 2 on both the SNES and Genesis. Ok obviously people are going to have their own preferences between the two regardless of sound quality (read the comments on both videos), but in terms of the sound quality the SNES version wins.

With all that being said, the Genesis did have some great music if you looked in the right places. I know I am more of SNES guy, but if someone tried to tell me that the Genesis has bad music in it's games, I wouldn't resort to pointing towards the Sonic games cause that would be way too easy, I would actually kick him in the balls, strap some headphones on him and play this song. I wouldn't really have to worry about him retaliating because he would be too busy listening to this amazing song and forget he was ever in any pain or that he was angry at me. More importantly, he would realize how wrong his statement was.

The fact is M.U.S.H.A has a badass soundtrack and happens to be my personal favorite on the console. Seriously, the songs in it are so good that if the game itself was more popular, there would probably be people making some awesome rock arrangements of all the songs.

This theme right here plays in the very first level in the game. It has no intro that slowly leads into the badass part of the song, it's badass from the very start. It fits the first level quite well because right when you press start, the game doesn't wait for you, it just starts with you immediately shooting at incoming enemies.

This song is literally dieing for a rock/metal remix. Sadly the only one I found was this one and while it is good, it's the ONLY one I could find. Seriously, somebody please get four people together and break out the guitar, bass and drums so you can arrange this song.

Note: I did not upload any of these songs, both Guile's theme were uploaded by this guy and this guy. The song was uploaded by this channel and the remix was done by the Youtube user, onlycheez.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

VGM Of The Day #4: Donkey Kong Country: Jungle Hijinx

You know, I will just flat out say it, The Donkey Kong Country series has some of the best music in video games and It happens to be some of my favorite music in games. All of the music was just ahead of it's time showing everybody what was possible with game music. Add the fact that the music is just so damn good, I think it's wrong not to acknowledge it in my list.

I wanted to start with the theme that started it all, Jungle Hijinx. This is the theme that is definitely the most recognized and that is probably because this played in the very first level in the series. Not to mention that this is the theme pretty much associated with DK now. That means if DK is in a game nowadays, this theme is in there somewhere.

The song starts out with some rhythmic drums and then one by one as the intro goes on, another instrument is added like clockwork. When the bass comes in, it completely steals the show because it is so amazing. The intro is easily my favorite part of the song because of all the instruments sound so good together and it makes this bad ass combination of rhythmic drums, awesome bass and finally the piano at the very end; leading into the next part of the song.

The section is short, but it is an amazing jazz piece. The great part about this section is how it gets you into the rhythm of the platforming; jumping on all the enemies and timing your jumps. After this a quick transition using drums leads to the final part of the song.

This final part has kinda of a somber feeling to it. It is like the complete opposite of the exciting jazz of the previous section and when it comes in, it throws you off guard quite a bit.

I love this song from it's amazing drums and bass intro, all the way to it gloomy end. There has been nothing like this ever on the Super Nintendo or even in video games at that time. This excellent work deserves a spot on my list and expect more songs in the series in the future to be here.

Note: Once again I did not upload this song, it was done by this guy

Friday, February 10, 2012

VGM Of The Day #3 Spellforce: Order Of Dawn: Greyfell

Spellforce's soundtrack is your run of the mill orchestrated fantasy soundtrack, but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's bad; just that it has been done many times before. For that reason alone, the soundtrack is just obscure and seen as an afterthought just because there is similar music in many other games. I haven't played the game all the way through; in fact far from it, but with one song early in the game; I had found a song that slipped through many people's subconscious but shouldn't have been

The song itself is a typical town theme you would see in other games like this as it is very soothing to the ears; giving you a feeling that you have reached a safe haven in the game, but it has an other characteristic as well. Greyfell just so happens to be the first city in the game that you reach and it is kinda a small hub to different sections of the world via portals. With that in mind the song kinda gives off a you just finished the intro now start your epic adventure feeling.

I was going into this game expecting a completely forgettable soundtrack because that what's a lot of reviews said; yet I actually proved them wrong in my own mind with just this song and who knows, maybe when I keep going with Spellforce, I will find another song that sticks to me.

Note: Once again song note uploaded by me but done by this guy who has other Spellforce songs uploaded so give them a listen.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

VGM Of The Day #2 Planescape Torment: Main Theme

One of the most important songs in your game should be the main theme, if you are going to spend weeks working on composing one song in your game it should be the main theme because The main theme is just that important. A good main theme should leave a a good first expression; the song should blow you away at the title screen and when it's done it should make you want to start the game. Another thing a main theme should do is that it should set the mood or feel of the game. The main theme should represent the game, meaning the feel of the game should match the feel of the main theme. To put it simply, if your game is epic your main theme better be epic. If you want a good example let me present Planescape Torment

Right when you start the game you go through all of the company logo's that we are all familiar with then we get to the intro cutscene which is great. Once we get to the title screen the song begins and it's like a match made in heaven. It starts out with a bell toll and then these voices come in chanting. A buildup starts; with the tone of it ascending and at the end it has a quick climax and then the song truly begins. It continues on with a slow and calm pace kinda like the beginning  of the game where you making your way out of the morgue.

Suddenly out of nowhere this epic chanting comes in and takes over. The chanting is like a mixture of an epic and awe type of feeling; I believe this section is all about game world; walking out of the morgue and into Sigil; that feeling that you just entered a big world and you are just a small part of it. another possibility is that it could be about The Nameless One; mainly his actions, his relationships with the other characters or the mystery of his past.

Finally, the last section has a more aggressive feel to it. This most likely represents all the conflict in the game which can be as simple as the combat with enemies or the conflict The Nameless One has with himself. After that the song slowly and quietly ends leaving you to reflect.

You see, every section of that song is important to the game; each telling a part of the story. Each section is different but they all fit together like a puzzle. This is a great example of what a main theme can and should do. If your main theme can't do this; then why exactly is it your main theme in the first place? When you're composing the main theme, you have to have the entire game in mind to make sure that it gives off the same theme and emotions. If you do that people will remember it and if they remember the theme, there is a good chance they will remember the game associated with it.

Note: Once again I didn't upload the song it was actually done on this guys channel.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

VGM Of The Day #1 Unreal Tournament: Game Of The Year Edition: Razorback

This marks the very first post of the VGM of the day series, It is pretty much were everyday I put up a Video Game Tune I like and share it. I am not going to lie this is inspired by the Youtube channel Supradarky he started his list a few year back and you can find his channel here. so on with the very first entry.

Most people that know me would probably think that my first post would be something from a Mario, Zelda or even a Final Fantasy game. This entry is specifically for you

Even though Unreal Tournament is mainly a multiplayer FPS; Epic games didn't make that an excuse for just throwing in some half ass songs into the game. Thanks to that way of thinking, we get stuff like this in the game.

This tracks starts out slow like it's waiting for you to start and at around the ten second mark, it explodes in to some awesome guitar riffs. That ten seconds is just enough time to start the match, find a weapon and start using it on your opponents. This makes it not only a good transition for the song, but also for what's going on in the game.

It goes on for awhile with some mix of guitar and electronic sounds leaving you to rack up your frag count. Then out of nowhere at the two minute mark this techno bit comes in and takes over the whole song; practically leaving the guitar in the background. It doesn't really sound like this sort of change should work, but it does beautifully.

This happens to be my favorite track in the game because not only is it a good song by itself, but it just works so well in the game making both the game and the song compliment each other. This is what video game music should strive to be and why it is the first entry on my list.

Note: The video of the song is not something I uploaded my self, it was actually done by ultdave. Check him out, as he has the entire UT soundtrack on his channel.

Also check out Supradarky's channel, this guys has over a thousand entry's (which is still going) so you are pretty much guaranteed to find something you enjoy or at least remember.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

First Entry

Hello there, this marks the very first entry of my Blog. I have no idea if I brought you here through something like Facebook or if you found it thanks to the mysterious magic of internet search engines, but I am glad you found it. This Blog is mainly going to be about video games, but I may go to other topics if I feel like it.

I don’t really know what this Blog is going to amount to or even who is going to read it. I guess we will see what happens and hope for the best.