Sunday, January 20, 2013

Why I Love Video Game Music

So.  I've been writing.  A lot.  Whether its celebrating the one year anniversary of Physics Incarnate, or working on a second season (and new site!) for my Lego comic Chronicles of Alleron, or even editing Protostar and working on Physics Reincarnate, well, I've been busy.

And busy writers need music!

Now, I love bands like Silversun Pickups, but as a young kid I played a lot of video games.  Be it the 8-bit Nintendo, the 16-bit Super Nintendo, or the 16-bit Sega Genesis, music is just an awesome force.  Video game music has, well, some really bad examples - and some awesome ones.  Instead of focusing on lyrics, game soundtracks of that era had to create atmosphere.  Entered into a dark cave?  You need some seriously dark music.  About to fight a boss?  How about something fucking energetic?!

This is a re-iteration of a song from Secret of Mana called "Danger."  It's mildly edited, but true to the original:

Between the loud, shocking notes of the opening, the grim rumbles of the middle, or the triumphant tones of the end of each cycle, well, hey - it's downright energetic, alright.  It gives listeners a rush.  It lets you know that damn right you are fighting for your life.  But how about something else?  How about something sad?  How about Final Fantasy Six's Opera Scene?

Not only is the music important, it's a section of a game dedicated to a song!  And that's awesome in and of itself.  I'm a huge fan of this scene, and the song?  Not bad, either.  Another good tune I like is this diddy from Xenogears, a game I've talked a hell of a lot about, already:

One thing you might note is that, so far, all three of these games and their soundtracks belong to Squaresoft games.  Two of them are 16-bit, and one is a Playstation One game.  They're all roleplaying games.  Is that a surprise?  It shouldn't be - atmosphere is huge in these kind of games, and Square made a lot of RPGs at that time.

How about a Capcom game?

I know, that's another RPG on the SNES; but it's not Squaresoft, at least!  Anyhow, if you were curious, here's Screwattack's top-10 music themes.  Here's 10 more songs, and they're the top-10 ever.  They took nominations.  15,000+ were offered.  Wow.

Anyhow, I just wanted to give you a little taste of one of the influences of my writing.  It's chaotic, it's random, it's weird - but it's there.  This is just what I enjoy!  And there's a clear reason for it, and I think I've proven my point.

1 comment:

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