I stumbled across a track that I thought could serve a dual purpose as both VGM and in a general musical capacity, such as an audio recording on an album to which people would actually listen. Check it out, formulate your own answer, and then read the whole post to reveal the truth.
What say you? Is this track a trick or a treat? (sorry… had to put Halloween in here somehow; also, the tune, whether it’s a trick or not, is a treat… so… anyway just keep reading!)
I’ve been kind of wondering when I’d actually get to composing something and, well, tonight was the night. I wasn’t even planning on it, but I was sitting in bed and a little melody popped into my head and I figured I should just get to it.
After making the decision to go ahead, I immediately realized that it was indeed a good decision. The melody is exactly what I want in a first tune: it’s simple. My writing typically isn’t simple, as I consciously constantly try to think of what I can do to develop a part and make it more interesting even if it doesn’t need any more development. Since that can make things very cluttered, one of the goals I set for myself before I started the blog was to let things stand and not make unnecessary developments. As I work on these songs, you’ll be able to see what I’m doing, and if I go too far with something, you have my permission to tell me to stop. Remind me of my goal if things get too crazy!
Without any further ado, here is the first very very rough 21 seconds of my inaugural project for [Score.]! More
I would suggest listening and watching one more time straight through so that you re-familiarize yourself with everything. Also, before I get into the analysis, I’d like the reader to see how I personally broke down the form of the piece for the sake of this analysis. If anyone has a better suggestion on how to organize it, please let me know—this is certainly not the end-all-be-all!
- Section A: “Introduction” (0:00-0:57)
- Section B: “Transition” (00:57-1:14)
- Section C: “String Melody” (1:14-1:49)
- Section D: “Breakdown and Ending” (1:49-2:22)
Cool. Now, let’s pick up where we left off. In less than a minute’s worth of music we listened to an enchanting, nostalgic, and, at points, childlike musical intro that set up not only the coming of an exciting display of PSX CGI power and adrenaline-pumping music, but also for the gamer for what he should expect out of the entire game’s soundtrack. We took note of Yasunori Mitsuda’s very present bass, dancing flute, and moving acoustic guitar, which all combine to enhance and reveal a folk flavor in his music.
Cue :56. A suspended cymbal roll comes from behind the flute, which turns and lands on a note that stings the downbeat of what I will call the “transition.” Suddenly, when the listener only had a few instruments to take in before, a flurry of sounds comes to him or her all at once and s/he is whisked off at full-speed. The important part about the transition is its ability to rush the listener forward and get him or her caught up in the moment using rhythm. Yes, the tempo speeds up, but it is not tempo alone that perks the ears and does the engaging. It may take the listener many-a-repeat to catch all of the elements that help drive the music forward, but they are worth fishing for and catching. More
News: According to a press release revealed on the blog UndergrounDuelists, Link will have a harp to play in the upcoming Skyward Sword. The harp will use the functions of the Wii Remote Plus.
Opinion: My first impression is to be excited about this feature, though I don’t know if I should be. The last time I played a musical instrument in Zelda was in Ocarina of Time, and the function of the music in the game and the tunes themselves really sold me on everything. I remember playing the game at my friend Kyle’s house (again, I had a PSX and not an N64) and rushing home to learn the tunes on my house piano. Every time I played the game afterwards, I just wanted to bust out the song of storms everywhere.
That being said, I’m not sure if the other games have had musical elements and, if they did, whether or not they were any good. If the harp in Skyward Sword has a similar function to the ocarina, I’ll be psyched and will definitely review the songs here.
I remember hearing about a sequel to my then-favorite game of all time when I was in middle school and not knowing how to handle myself. Finally, after years of dreaming up my own stories about the characters in Chrono Trigger, Squaresoft would finally continue the epic tale themselves, setting in stone what would happen to the Chrono universe. Sure, my tales would be rendered obsolete, but that didn’t matter—how could anything be better than the original creators’ minds?
Originally, I thought that I first learned about the game via demo. I bought Vagrant Story for PSX, which included the demo disc, but according to Wikipedia, that game was released on May 15, 2000, and Chrono Cross was released on August 15, 2000. I was dumbfounded by these dates because I remember waiting. And waiting. And waiting. And waiting for this game to come out. Three months didn’t make sense to me.
Then, I saw that the game was released in Japan on November 18, 1999, almost a year before the North American drop date. That made more sense: I had likely read about it a year or more prior, got ultra psyched, and then suffered for so long that my memory wouldn’t allow me to remember such times. It’s nice that the feeling of eternal wait can be explained practically instead of with the excuse that time seems to flow for children much slower than it does for adults (which was my back-up excuse). Anyway, I had picked up Vagrant Story because it was a new Squaresoft game and not because I was expecting a demo. But as soon as I read that such a thing was included, I squirmed all the way home and popped that disc in ready for action and…! More
Hi, my name is Gregory Weaver and it is my dream to compose music for video games.
Since I love to write and recently rediscovered the joys in making my own blog, I decided to start a new one to catalog my journey to my career path of choice. If you join me for the ride, you will be able to read about every step of my creative process, including (but not limited to):
- Composing. Through screenshots, PDF files, and imbedded audio, you will be able to see and hear the progress that I am making in writing tunes from their birth through either their final mastering or their death at the hands of my better judgment. Or, best-case scenario, you will see them in games.
- Exploring Video Game Music. Before I decided to create this blog I realized that I don’t listen to enough video game music, and the stuff to which I do listen is from the PSX era at best. I am looking to make up for lost ground, and will review what I study here, citing what I like—and what I don’t like—about soundtracks that I explore.
- Finding inspiration and developing new ideas. Whether I am finding inspiration in music outside of video games, in things that I practice, in articles that I read, in nature, etc., I will share my musings and talk about the effects that they’re having on my current musical self.
- Getting to where I want to be. How will I shimmy my way into the video game industry? I’ve heard it tough, but I am confident that I will make it in. Consider this a guide to what works and what doesn’t work when trying to create a path into this coveted land.
So, is this blog worthwhile? Am I chasing a crazy, impossible dream? Maybe. But only through keeping up with me here will you find out. Join me as I venture into the unknown and either make… or break.