Last week we reported on the release of the soundtrack to Obduction a new game from Cyan Worlds, the creators of the original classic games Myst and Riven. Robyn Miller composed the music for Obduction and he graciously took the time to talk to Original Sound Version about composing the score.
In our interview Robyn Miller provides insight on how he became a part of the project, his approach to scoring the game, and his favorite tracks on the album. He also answers a question I’ve had for years about the Cyan introduction music. Read on for our extensive interview and listen to tracks from the score that formed part of our discussion.
Fans of the four-part string band known as Triforce Quartet may now rejoice, as the group has officially released their second album!
Ultima Phantsia is the follow up to the group’s debut album, The Legend of the Triforce Quartet in 2014. The ten track album features heavy tribute to the Final Fantasy games, in line with the album’s title. It also includes arrangements of Mega Man X, Civilization IV and even a bonus track mashup of themes from The Walking Dead and Game of Thrones, just to round out the nerdery of the album.
Super Smash Bros Wii U – “Main Theme” (Triforce Quartet)
The album release comes right before the group’s performance at the upcoming PAX West 2016. You can order the album directly from the group’s website, or purchase it digitally through iTunes, Google Play or Amazon.
The Obduction Original Soundtrack was released on August 24, 2016 along with the game. Robyn Miller co-created and wrote the music for both Myst and Riven: The Sequel to Myst, and this marks his return to composing music for a Cyan Worlds title. After E3 2016 the Obduction soundtrack made my list as one of my most anticipated soundtracks. You can listen to the 28 track album through the bandcamp link below.
At my first listen I can firmly say that Robyn Miller’s return to scoring for video games is a welcome one. The album cover is also an impressive work of art. You can also watch the official launch trailer for the game featuring Robyn Miller’s music.
You can purchase digital copy of the soundtrack on bandcamp for $7. You can also purchase the full game for $29.99 at the official Obduction page. Stay tuned to Original Sound Version for more on the Obduction soundtrack next week when we’ll share our interview with composer Robyn Miller.
The fun just keeps on coming in terms of vinyl releases of classic video game soundtracks. (With some turning out better than others.) At the top of the VGM record leaderboards, Data Discs has revealed their seventh official release in collaboration with SEGA of Japan. The soundtracks to both Golden Axe and Golden Axe II will be pressed to vinyl, and will include high-quality lithographs from both games, along with artwork from the Japanese release featured for the cover sleeve.
The first Golden Axe game was composed by Tohru Nakabayashi (Altered Beast, Thunder Blade) in 1989, with Naofumi Hataya (Sonic CD, Burning Rangers) jumping in to compose for Golden Axe II in 1991. Both soundtracks featured battle-ready music with grim undertones that played well with both games’ Conan the Barbarian-like themes.
The vinyl will be released by Data Discs on August 27th in both classic and golden standard editions, as well as a limited edition gold with purple swatches.
I for one will be standing at the ready for that limited edition, ready to bequeath Data Discs my love (and money.) Golden Axe was one of the first games I ever played when it came on the Sega 6-PAK and I played the heck of of it and its sequel, so it holds a special place in my heart and there’s no doubt in my mind that Data Discs are the right people for the job in remastering both soundtracks to vinyl.
Zuntata, Taito’s legendary house band, has quietly built a huge presence on iTunes over the last 8 years culminating in a current catalog of 114 albums. It isn’t just their modern mobile games either, although Groove Coaster and Space Invaders Infinity Gene are well represented. Albums go all the way back into the 80’s with The Ninja Warriors, Rastan Saga and Bubble Bobble. The rarely exported Densha de Go! series has several albums up for sale and naturally, there’s a ton of music from the Darius games and the Ray trilogy (RayStorm, RayCrisis, RayForce).
To hear all of that music would cost over $1,000 but Taito has just announced that “more than 3,000 songs” from their catalog are now available to stream through Apple Music. Similar to Spotify and Google Music Unlimited, Apple Music costs $10 a month and allows you to search and stream millions of songs from the iTunes catalog across your Apple devices. It’s worth noting that new users can try Apple Music free for three months which should give you enough time to explore all of the service’s game music offerings.
If you suddenly feel overwhelmed with choices we have plenty of reviews to guide you through Zuntata’s discography and there’s more coverage at VGMOnline. Do you have a favorite Zuntata album or are you planning to dive into their catalog now that it’s available on Apple Music? Let us know in the comments.
The results of the third annual Game Audio Industry Survey — conducted by the GameSoundCon organizers with the help of the Game Audio Network Guild — have been tabulated and analyzed for 2016. Between May and June 587 individual respondents working in games audio reported on compensation, work environment, contract terms, use of live musicians and education to shed new light on the industry landscape. I wanted to pull out some of the more fascinating findings but the full report, available here, offers much more technical insight for those working in the industry or trying to break in. Let’s take a look.
Yesterday marked the 21st anniversary of the American release of Square’s beloved time-traveling JRPG, Chrono Trigger. Now that Chrono Trigger is legal to drink here in the states, the good folks at Overclocked Remix decided to throw it a party; in the form of a jazz tribute album! Chronology: A Jazz Tribute to Chrono Trigger features eight tracks from the Overclocked Jazz Collective; a group featuring artists such as Nostalvania, DrumUltima and the project’s own director, Dylan “Wiesty” Wiest.
Through some fluke, I was able to assemble my own “dream team” of musicians and arrangers on OC ReMix who all shared a passion for jazz and video game music. I felt Chrono Trigger would be an ideal candidate for our first release given the game’s quickly approaching 20th anniversary and the fact that Mitsuda’s music lends itself so well to jazz and improvisation. The musicians and artists on this album have put in countless hours of practice and recording to produce an album which I think sounds authentic and natural. Jazz is a social music best captured in the moment… and while the production process of this album was anything but “in the moment,” I think the album’s sound and cohesiveness will speak for itself. – Dylan Wiest, Chronology Project Director
This marks the second album Overclocked Remix has produced in tribute to Chrono Trigger; the first being Chrono Symphonic in 2006.
You can download the entire Chronology album for free on several mirrors hosted on their OCRemix website. Between this and the Chronicles of Time mega album from earlier this year, Chrono Trigger and it’s gorgeous soundtrack by Yasunori Mitsuda is definitely getting the love it rightfully deserves.
Iam8bit is taking the vinyl arms race to a whole new level for the release of Rez Infinite — the HD remake of the original Rez for PlayStation 4 and PlayStation VR — this October. Along with releasing a physical copy of the game on disc (and plenty of swag), iam8bit is offering two vinyl packages that commemorate the cultural touchstone of the original Sega Dreamcast and PlayStation 2 title.
Both versions feature two 180-gram, full sized LPs of the original game’s soundtrack, remastered for vinyl, and a bonus 7-inch record of Rez Infinite’s new “Area X” level. Inside is a 48 page art book with huge imagery from the game and retrospective interviews from the original team. Written by Nick Hurwitch, the book includes new discussions with Rez producer Tetsuya Mizuguchi, art director Katsumi Yokota, programmer Osamu Kodera, artist Jake Kazdal, and Takashi Ishihara, the artist behind the new “Area X”.
The only difference between the $75 and $85 editions are the “Player Form” images stamped into both sides of the three records, and the limited quantity of 1,000 copies for the fancier set.
Pre-orders for the soundtrack collection and the physical copy of the game begin August 19th at 9am PDT exclusively at iam8bit.com. Shipping is expected in October for the $75 version of the soundtrack and December for the fancy printed edition.
On August 4, 2016, Video Games Live released their fifth album Video Games Live: Level 5 to its Kickstarter backers. The album is the result of another successful Kickstarter campaign where stretch goals resulted in a 10 track album becoming 12, adding backer voted tracks from Okami, and Xenoblade Chronicles.
Tommy Tallarico was kind enough to provide me with a digital copy to review which came in two formats MP3, and a 24bit 96KHz .wav version and I took the time for repeated listens in both versions. I attended Video Games Live during their 2015 Canadian Tour, and reviewed their previous album release Video Games Live: Level 4. Read on to hear my thoughts on the new album.
Seattle, WA (August 15, 2016) – What does it take to write music for games? Hear from six of the industry’s leading composers as they share their experiences and discuss the craft of scoring music for video games.
The 2016 PAX West composer panel “Maestros of Video Games” will feature the following music star lineup:
Sarah Schachner Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Assassin’s Creed Unity, Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag (additional music).
Inon Zur Fallout 3 & 4, Syberia 2 & 3, Dragon Age 1 & 2, Prince of Persia, Eagle Flight.
Jack Wall Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 & 3, Mass Effect 1 & 2, Lost Planet 3, Into The Stars.
Sascha Dikiciyan (aka Sonic Mayhem) Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Mass Effect 3, Tron Evolution, Borderlands.
Limited Run Games is a boutique publisher that delivers Sony-certified physical copies of digital PlayStation 4 and Vita titles. As the name implies, their releases come in very limited quantities and they’re kind of blowing the minds of modern day collectors. Only a few thousand copies of games like Octodad, Oddworld: New & Tasty and Xeodrifter have ever been produced and won’t be reprinted again. Even more exclusive are the select soundtrack CDs pressed in even smaller batches of a few hundred.
Previous soundtrack releases include Breach & Clear: Deadline by Jason Graves, Futuridium Deluxe, Saturday Morning RPG by Vince DiCola and Soldner-X 2 by Rafael Dyll. Don’t bother clicking frantically over to Limited Run’s site, they’ve been sold out for ages. While I can’t help you get those older releases I can tell you about the next one: Shadow Complex.
The Xbox Live Arcade classic was cleaned up and re-released as a console download earlier this year but on Friday, August 19th you can purchase it and the soundtrack CD exclusively from Limited Run’s site. Sales start at 10am EDT with a second batch made available at 6pm EDT. The game itself will run for $24.99 while the 17-track album from Josh Aker and Isreal Curtis will go for $14.99. While this is Limited Run’s biggest release to date there are only 6,900 copies of the game to go around and far, far fewer soundtrack CDs: a mere 800.
Are you a fan of Shadow Complex or its music and planning to pick up a rare physical copy? What other modern digital games would you love to see released alongside its soundtrack? Let us known in the comments.
Spotify has offered a selection of video game soundtracks practically since it launched in 2008. At times I’d see a Halo OST float by or the Grand Theft Auto albums pop up with their tracklists of licensed pop songs. I always appreciated that they were offering anything at all but it was never the place I ran to for game music. Over the last few years, though, the streaming service has begun catering more and more to the gaming crowd.
Just last Spring Sony replaced their Music Unlimited service on PlayStation 4 with an exclusive Spotify app that hooks into the console beautifully. Now Spotify has launched a dedicated place for gamers and game music fans with Spotify Gaming. Of course, the focus remains on curated playlists of pop, rock, rap and electronic music but several of them come from today’s tech and game bloggers. Writers from GamesBeat, Mashable, Polygon, GamesRadar and Engadget have submitted some of their top tracks for the new category. Other featured playlists aim to set the mood with absurd titles like “Epic Gaming”, “Mellowed Out Gaming” and “Ultimate Pop Gaming”… whatever those even mean.
I like that they pulled in games journalists to make playlists but let’s be honest: what we’re really here for are the original soundtracks. Over the years Spotify’s catalog has grown to offer around 100 albums but most importantly, they’re all in one place. The Gaming category is available on all platforms (mobile, desktop and console) so you can finally stop rooting through the World or Soundtrack sections hunting for game music.
The selection isn’t all encompassing by any means but it’s a respectable mix of modern, mobile and indie titles. The latest offerings include 65daysofstatic’s soundtrack to No Man’s Sky (which Ryan just reviewed) and Tomoki Miyoshi’s score to I am Setsuna. There are mobile hits like Sword & Sworcery and Monument Valley and indie titles including Bastion, Fez, The Banner Saga and more. There’s even a random Mega Man album but, oh, it’s only Volume 2 of the gargantuan 10-disc 25th Anniversary collection. At least it’s a start.
Do you stream music from Spotify (game music or not) and what do you think of this new dedicated category? Is it enough to entice you to subscribe? Let us know in the comments.
Last week we reported on the release of the soundtrack to Obduction a new game from Cyan Worlds, the creators of the original classic games Myst and Riven. Robyn Miller composed the music for Obduction and he graciously took ...
On August 4, 2016, Video Games Live released their fifth album Video Games Live: Level 5 to its Kickstarter backers. The album is the result of another successful Kickstarter campaign where stretch goals resulted in a ...
The music to No Man’s Sky: Music for an Infinite Universe has been something I’ve been excited for since it made my Top 10 Most Anticipated Soundtracks Post E3 2015. 65daysofstatic has been teasing us ...