Tag Archives: video game music

The Chill YouTube Comments On Game Soundtracks Are A Pleasant Surprise

This hour-long video on YouTube, whose title roughly translates to “One hour corridor ‘Chrono Trigger,’” plays the same three-minute “Corridors of Time” track from the game over and over again. It has over 1 million views, and it also has one of the most pleasant comment sections I’ve seen, full of viewers devoted to celebrating the music and the game it’s from. Some people replay games, others watch replays on Twitch, and others—like me—enjoy collectively remensicing to a 16-bit tune.

“Am I butterfly dreaming I’m a man? Or a bowling ball dreaming I’m a plate of sashimi? Never assume what you see and feel is real,” reads one of the 759 comments currently under the video. It’s a quote from Doreen, one of the characters who lives in the Kingdom of Zeal where the Corridors of Time music plays. This line of dialogue is a reference to the writings of the Daoist philosopher Zhuangzi, and it perfectly captures the vibe of the music and the original location. Another person responded with the quote “All life begins with Nu and ends with Nu. This is the truth! This is my belief!…At least for now.”

Dozens of highly trafficked gaming music videos were taken off YouTube earlier this week following copyright claims by Nintendo. An entire channel, BrawlBRSTMs3, was taken down by its owner who cited concerns over Nintendo’s new crackdown. While a lot of video game music has moved to Spotify, where it’s officially distributed by the game publishers that own it, there’s no easy replacement for the experience of listening to beloved soundtracks on YouTube.

One of the special things about listening to video game music on YouTube is users’ ability to upload customized tracks, specifically looped versions of tracks that extend the listening experience uninterrupted (with the exception of the occasional rogue YouTube ad). Most video game music is designed to be played in perpetuity. Who knows whether you’re going to finish the dungeon or beat the boss in a few minutes or a few hours. In arcades, the music loops until the lights shut off. Even at home, with endless distractions only a few swipes or clicks away, video games provide soundtracks for more than just what’s happening on screen. More than once I’ve let the Persona 5 song “Tokyo Daylight” loop for hours after I’ve fallen asleep on my couch.

Game soundtracks on YouTube lend themselves well to late night study sessions, ambient background music for work, or in my case, falling asleep. But they’ve also become home to some of the loveliest gaming communities I’ve ever encountered. Far away from the snark on Twitter, the toxicity on Reddit, or the outrage across so much of the rest of gaming YouTube, soundtrack pages tend to be a place where you can fall in love with something all over again and share it with others simply by listening to a few tracks.

In the comments section under a 12-minute version of Silent Hill 2‘s “Promise Reprise,” people quote letters found in the game. Some share stories of their own losses that they’ve coped with while listening to this music.Others offer one-off lines of improvised poetry. Others just want more. “Make a 10 hour version,” asked one person.

On the page for an extended version of “The Opened Way” from Shadow of the Colossus, people share stories about listening to this music as they waited for school to be over so they could go home and play the game. On the page for a 10-hour version of “Zora’s Domain” from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, people share stories about the passage of time. “This brought a tear to my eye. All the sad memories of being a child. Loving my parents. Enjoying the serenity of the game, while not having a care in the world,” writes one person. “Played this game as a kid. Zara’s domain was always my favorite song. Now it’s my 8-month-old’s lullaby. Amazing,” writes another.

The hour-long cut of Corridors of Time video is still my favorite. The looping graphics of a city floating in the sky, the music, and the people who have converged there are one of the more beautiful social happenstances I’ve ever witnessed. Some of the commenters have been around long enough to remember posting on earlier uploads of the video that were subsequently taken down. Hopefully they will always keep coming back. 

Source: Kotaku.com

Twitter Account Serves Up Perfect, Bite-Sized Samples Of Video Game Music

Video game music rules. Sometimes, it is legitimately great. Since the start of 2019, Twitter account 140 Seconds VGM has been breaking down game tunes into bite-sized chunks. Sometimes the songs are classics, sometimes they’re random oddities. But every new post brings a bright blast of music.

140 Seconds VGM posts a handful of times a day, with samples slightly over two minutes. It’s a good way to get a taste for well-known composers as well as find some of the stranger, lesser-known pieces of music. For instance, you might go from the JRPG boldness of Octopath Traveler’s Yasunori Nishiki to the operatic and inimitable work of Nier composer Keiichi Okabe:

Other times, it’s something a little more random and funky. For instance, you might stumble upon the pop music from the clumsy-to-play but still pretty charming Sega Saturn racing game Sonic R. 140 Seconds VGM has something for everyone.

Now, one might say “Heather, you bojo! This has been running nearly a year! Why didn’t you tell us sooner?” or even “Psh, I knew about this before it was cool.” But 140 Seconds VGM has just recently stumbled into my life, and I want to share the joy. Start your morning right with a little bit of music.

I know I’m gonna keep an eye out for whenever they post the title screen music from Skies of Arcadia. It’s the second best piece of game music. The first is Chrono Cross’ ‘Scars of Time.’ Nothing’s ever come close to beating that one.

Source: Kotaku.com

I Both Love And Feel Embarrassed About All The Video Game Music On My Phone

Screenshot: Nintendo (YouTube)
Kotaku Game DiaryDaily thoughts from a Kotaku staffer about a game we’re playing.  

An eight-hour road trip I recently took with a friend quickly turned into a musical deep dive. As we flew through conversations about bachata, gospel, R&B, soul, house, and more, my friend mentioned that ’90s music made up a significant portion of his palate. “You know, there’s a lot of anime and video game music that’s influenced by black American music,” I casually mentioned, barely concealing the same air of conspiracy as someone planning to play you no less than several dozen “hilarious” YouTube videos. My friend, a non-nerd who trusts my sense of his taste (wise) and who is very patient with me (unwise), humored me and handed me the audio cord for the car’s stereo (anarchy).

“Walking in the crowd in a faceless town, I need to feel the touch of a friend,” I crooned, Milly Rocking emphatically. “Smile Bomb,” the opening them from Yuyu Hakusho, is widely considered a classic among anime openings, and I wanted to put my friend on.

“YASSS high notes! She must be a soprano,” my friend cooed in approval, which I took as a sign to keep going. As a card-carrying Sonic R apologist, this was clearly my chance to get someone else in my corner. I played “Work It Out,” one of several songs from the game that I’m convinced could have been on a CeCe Peniston B-side.

My friend liked this one, too, but after a while, he reasonably wanted to hear something he knew the lyrics to. I set a smaller section of my 6,000-song collection on shuffle, but then I felt a familiar anxiety building. It’s one thing to curate these songs for someone but another thing entirely to randomly shuffle through thousands of unorganized songs. I kept my finger on the skip button so that I could keep us within the parameters of the R&B and soul that had sent us down the rabbit hole in the first place, dodging cringey options. I also resisted the temptation to play more Bust a Groove music, even though it actually would fit the vibe we were going for.

I have way too many unpleasant memories of shuffle snafus directly caused by game and anime music. It’s embarrassing to be creating a relaxing mood and suddenly have a weird nasal voice start warbling, “Where’s that place that comes in pairs whenever I’m aware? Casino here, casino in my hair!” Once, I was playing a bunch of relaxing alternative R&B when “Devils Never Cry” suddenly came in with its mildly horrifying church organ music. It’s one thing to explain away, say, a Korn phase, but it’s a little harder to make a case for occult-sounding pretty-boy devil music. If my friend thought I was a murderer after hearing that on my playlist, I kind of couldn’t blame them?

Then there are the jarring moments where I’m not paying close enough attention to that skip button and I ruin my own mood by letting a song play when it should have been skipped within the first millisecond. I love Louisiana bounce music and dance to it a lot. What I don’t love dancing to is “Go K.K. Rider,” yet there it is on my playlist, confidently following Big Freedia like it’s just supposed to be there!

I often find myself skipping songs I otherwise like because they are notorious mood killers, popping up just like that one super weird episode of a show you were otherwise excited to brag about. “Otherworld,” the theme that plays in the big fancy cutscene at the beginning of Final Fantasy X, does this often. “DON’T. YOU. GIIIIVE UP ON IT,” it growls at me, before I quietly give up on it and try the next track. I headbang a few times to the riffs of “Fright Flight!!” from Um Jammer Lammy, but I skip to the next track before the traumatized pilot can scream at me to “LOOKUPINTHESKY, GIMMEALLYOUGOT, NEVAGIVEITUP, SOLDIER!”

Still, sometimes, I hit lyrics that truly capture the essence of the soul, and in those moments, the cringe of it doesn’t really matter: now me ohhh me now, kway kway me nah oh, me oh me oh me oh me oh!

The key change, your fave, never.

Now me oh is right, Totakeke. Now me oh is right.

Source: Kotaku.com