Invoke Nostalgia: Videogame Music Arrangements

One thing I find extremely cool is finding that someone has taken an old VG theme and remade it, usually with modern instrumentation (especially if the old theme happens to be done with extremely crappy VG synthesizers)

Since I’m a total hipster and stuffles, if said song happens to be from something that I know and like and isn’t super popular (i.e not a remix of Mario or FF7 music), it just gives me this awesome overwhelming feeling of nostalgia.

So here are 5 pieces that I’ve picked out with this effect on me (note: This is an extremely unsubtle attempt to get people to listen to some cool music).

1) Main Theme of Sorcerian (Sorcerian)

Sorcerian is probably the most successful out of Falcom’s “forgotten” franchises, back when they made many MANY games that weren’t Ys and Legend of Heroes. I guess it doesn’t hurt that Sorcerian composer Yuzo Koshiro has quite the pedigree. I love just about most of the music in Sorcerian but this particular one always stands out to me whenever I start a new version of this game. Something about this theme combined with the usual Engrishy opening (sadly not in the video) just brings a tear to my eye.

Though I don’t know much about this version of Sorcerian, I’m betting it’s one of those generic randomly licensed MMO that’s very loosely based on source material but who cares, the rearranged version is cool.

2) Romancing SaGa 2 Medley

I think that in the English speaking regions, SaGa fans tend to center around either RSaGa 3 and Frontier due to their availability in English but it seems to me like in Japan, Romancing SaGa 2 has the most exposure out of the bunch, with quite a bit of marketing and merchandise centered around the “7 Heroes”, the villains of the game.

This particular arrangement is from Lord of Vermillion 2, a card-based Arcade game that I kind of want to play, but unfortunately they never get released outside of Japan and are giant money sinks, so I guess that will only happen if I ever won the lottery.

3) Fly, Gundam! (Mobile Suit Gundam)

OKAY I CHEATED, THIS IS AN ANIME. But if you play a lot of Gundam games this will probably show up so it totally counts!

Objectively, the original MGS anime was just so… flawed in so many ways, especially tone and pacing. Ironically I think those are the things that make it memorable though. There’s just something about how it tries to create a futuristic mecha series based off World War 2 showcasing the tragedy of wars while brightly coloured goofy looking toy commercials fire lasers at each other.

Throw this particular theme song into the mix, which sounds more fitting for a “Super Robot” genre show rather than a war drama, and you can’t help but smile at the whole thing.

4) Last Regrets (Kanon)

Nowadays, Kanon is probably heavily criticized for a lot of reasons. Utilizing magical Deus ex Machinas for plot resolution, inventing new verbal tics for female characters every game, being too formulaic, whatever.

But I still think it’s an important milestone in the history of VNs. It’s probably one of the first VNs to ever receive an all-ages Anime adaptation and achieve marketing success that way. I realize that’s kind of a strange thing to say considering that nowadays just about every VN gets an adaptation… but it was a huge accomplishment back then.

I think it’s interesting that I actually don’t like the original version of this song that much, but I absolutely love this arrangement. Maybe it’s because of the change from a female singer to a male one? It seems like getting males to sing Anime/Game theme songs is really rare nowadays.

5) Rough Edge (Kichikuou Rance)

I wrote about this game before, so I won’t repeat my thoughts on it, you can find it here.

Before Touhou took over the doujin music scene, I think Kichikuou Rance had a pretty long run of being covered by the community. This track in particular was practically a requirement if you were even covering the game at all. It’s nice to see a vocal version that does it justice.

I linked to a video which I thought was better but for the heck of it, someone has actually translated the lyrics of the song and provided a full version. I’ll include that link here just for completion sake.

And yes, this song was in fact, the inspiration for titling the blog.

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