A short while ago, I took one of our regularly scheduled Music Mondays to talk about some music from various games that had been under-appreciated for one reason or another. However, there are far more songs fitting into that category than a meager five tunes. As such, I only thought it appropriate to have a repeat performance. I have here another five great video game songs that have been missed in the culture at large for you all to enjoy. Without further ado, let’s begin.
To start off, we have “Alter of Skorne” from Gauntlet: Dark Legacy. I rarely hear anyone talk about this game, let alone remember it, but I found it a fairly enjoyable experience with more than a couple good songs. This particular gem has an incredibly energetic organ forming the constant backbeat of the song, giving the entire tune a really solid and quick pace that gets the blood pumping. Later in the track, a few heavy guitar riffs are added to give the track even more weight at the most intense sections. It all adds up to a very enjoyable track to get you through a rather hellish battle.
When the first Dissidia came out, I heard many PSP owners talk about how the game was an enjoyable romp where all the old arguments about which Final Fantasy characters would win in a fight could be put to rest. Comparatively, the buzz around the sequel, Dissidia Duodecim, was rather low. It seemed like the original novelty had worn off for a fair amount of folks, but that doesn’t prevent some greatness still being inherit to the game. Namely, I’m talking about the final boss theme, “God in Fire,” an awesome rock theme with some truly intense vocals at play throughout the piece. It really gets across how there will be “endless chaos for an eternity,” as the song so eloquently puts it. I’ve always been a sucker for a well-done rock song, and “God in Fire” is exactly that.
Definitely the least known game in this particular group, The Nightmare Before Christmas: Oogie’s Revenge is a game that I have rarely heard of myself. While I can’t speak of the actual game quality in this case besides my standard initial reservations for licensed games, the final battle with Oogie Boogie of the game is set to a very interesting little number called “A Filthy Finale.” Despite having a very simple melody, the song is characterized by both Jack Skellington and Oogie Boogie singing counterpoints against one another about who really deserves to be the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town. I’d never claim that the song is a masterwork of instrumentation, but the lyrics are all very good at fitting the mood of The Nightmare Before Christmas and the entire thing is just a lot of fun to listen to. In all honesty, I think we could use more silly songs such as this one out in video gaming.
The Pokemon series has always been known for having some of the most classic songs and catchiest battle themes in all of video gaming (Pallet Town anyone?). However, some Pokemon songs tend to be lost to most people due to the special circumstances surrounding certain battles in the series. A good example of this is the Deoxys Battle Theme, a theme that, rather naturally, only plays when attempting to battle and catch the legendary Pokemon, Deoxys. However, the only way to get to Deoxys in the initial games he appeared in, FireRed and LeafGreen, was to either be at a special Nintendo Event or to cheat using a GameShark device. As such, barely anyone has heard this particular song–a real shame considering the quality of the piece. The song combines the standard Pokemon motifs with technological noises and strong bells to fit with the Deoxys’ scientific back-story and legendary status respectively. It’s a very fitting and catchy song that has been lost due to its rarity.
Lastly, we have a particularly interesting track from Trauma Center: New Blood on the Wii. Now, I’ve never had the opportunity to play a Trauma Center game before, but I have often heard it follows the same “mundane made awesome” idea as the Phoenix Wright games do. If “Cardia Stigma Phase II” is any indication, that same idea extends to the music being completely awesome as well. I can’t pretend that I had any presumptions as to the music that would accompany a surgical operation, but an awesome guitar piece that makes excellent use of both ominous choirs and well placed techno drops is not the first thing that would come to mind. Yet, that is exactly what the game gives you for the battle and it is a truly amazing piece. Sadly, almost no one seems to have heard the piece, as there hasn’t been a single person I’ve shown the song to who had actually heard it before. I can only hope that putting the track here spreads it further, as it truly deserves accolades.
Well, that does it for this group of unknown gems. As with last time, I hope that you were introduced to some great new songs that you probably hadn’t heard before and, if there are any songs that fit into this category that you personally know of, please be sure to comment with your own examples below. I always love to hear more awesome music from gaming.
Music Mondays is a weekly column by Austin Yorski and Robert Heck dedicated to discussing the most interesting audio experiences in electronic interactive media. Tune in every week for more original game soundtracks that you need to hear. Feel free to disagree with, add to, or question everything. I welcome your feedback.