July 25, 2014

An overview of games I’ve been playing via songs that get stuck in my head

Posted in music, video games tagged , at 12:26 pm by riulyn

I just finished Legend of Dragoon but I’m a bit bored with review after review, so it’s time to talk about music again. After all, I have played a bunch of games recently and have only made short statements about music. I guess that sort of describes my current video game life, though, as music has been sort of an afterthought. It doesn’t prevent music from getting stuck in my head.

Ar Tonelico 3 – M.S.G.Y.E.C. – The major appeal of this game for me is diving into cosmopheres. This song is played in dive shops and gets me pumped for the fun times ahead.

Breath of Fire GBA – Wait, what music? I play this game in too short of bursts and at random times for me to bother to turn on the music. Whoops.

Devil Survivor Overclocked – Cool Jam – Shows you how much I like the Demon Auction. It is a lot of fun even though some crazy bids occur. The rest of the game is sort of up and down with some weird difficulty spikes. By the way, the soundtrack for this game is pretty good for its style.

Drakengard 3 – “Final Boss Theme” – (Too lazy to find the actual title when a search like this works well enough.) To be honest, Drakengard 3 music doesn’t get stuck in my head and gets overshadowed by NieR music in my mind. However, that ending theme is beautiful even if that battle is horrible.

Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance – I rarely ever get Fire Emblem music stuck in my head. Which is crazy, considering a year ago I played Fire Emblem Awakening for like 100+ hours. I pretty much only know the main theme of the series.

Frontier Gate – “Frontiersman’s Town” – I put that in quotes because I’m too lazy to do a real translation of the title. It’s basically the home base song. So far have spent a lot of time there, just picking up quests and wondering just how long between plot points… The music in the game is decent at a Suikoden Tsumugareshi Hyakunen no Toki way. I wonder if the same group of Konami composers did both of them…

Legend of Dragoon – Forbidden Land Battle Theme – I don’t even really like this song, but maybe the fact that this battle theme gets stuck in my head compared to the other ones that I liked better shows just how much more time I spent listening to this battle theme compared to the others.

Magna Carta 2 – The Journey Begins – While nothing in particular gets stuck in my head, probably because I am playing this game on and off, this song I recognize the best so far. The music is alright. It sounds a lot like the first Magna Carta’s soundtrack so it doesn’t stand out to me.

Ni No Kuni – Field – Is it possible to play Ni No Kuni long enough without this song getting stuck in your head at some point? I do enjoy the song, even though I heard it a lot. It’s probably a good thing that it has a kind of epic and sweeping type of sound with repetitiveness mitigated by varied instrumentation. I guess I could say the same about traveling on the world map for a lot of the game. At least there were different monsters to catch.

Shining Ark – I can’t even find a link to the OST on YouTube, even though I have a song that gets stuck in my head from that game (Chapter 8 town song). It really does pale in comparison to Shining Hearts, and even that soundtrack is a mixed bag. I like Kikuta’s work on Secret of Mana way better than his Shining stuff. Supposedly he did the Atelier Escha&Logy soundtrack so I’ll probably be hearing some of that in the future.

Sol Trigger – I can’t remember a single song clearly from the OST. Then again I don’t know if there is actually an official one released? I only see videos of ripped music.

To the Moon – For River – There isn’t a ton of music variety in this game but it’s all really fitting to the mood of the game. I don’t think it’s possible to finish this game and not get this particular song stuck in your head, since it’s played so much. But I think it’s good so I don’t mind.

Virtue’s Last Reward – The game is being too atmospheric for music/sound from that game to stick in my head. I do remember the “An Ambidex Gate has been opened” voice really well, though.

Well, that’s a decent survey of games I recently played or am playing right now. Of course I have more games I could have added to this list. I omitted two games whose soundtracks I know too well to really pick a single track out of, or Radiant Historia and Valkyria Chronicles, since all sorts of tracks from those games get stuck in my head. At this point I’m not going to dig as far back as Bravely Default, though it is the next soundtrack to buy on my list of soundtracks to buy. Let’s have a top 5 OSTs I want to get next just to end off this post.

1. Bravely Default. I raved about this before.

2. Ar Tonelico 2 or 3. I’m leaning towards 3 at the moment.

3. Valkyrie Profile. I want to officially own rocking out Sakuraba tracks.

4. The World Ends With You. Something different but good.

5. Valkyria Chronicles. I actually don’t own this yet but I listen to it enough to think I should.


July 11, 2014

Shining Ark Review

Posted in video games tagged , at 7:29 am by riulyn

Wow, my blog has become review central, but this time it’s for the Japan-only game, Shining Ark. For those of you who have read my Shining Hearts review, you probably wondered why I was playing another Shining PSP game. I thought I got Shining Wind for the longest time, so once I realized I got Shining Ark I was a little bummed, since I read a review that the game wasn’t so great. Well, I ended up playing it anyway and it wasn’t great, but it worked well enough for late night or “kind of just want to do something but not think” gaming.

TLDR This game will upset most people because it could have been decent and not because it’s unbearably long or awful to play. In the end it’s mostly a time-passer that you don’t have to think much about and ended up being decent Japanese practice for me.

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July 1, 2014

Radiant Historia Review

Posted in video games tagged , at 8:19 pm by riulyn

I’ve let other things distract me these past few weeks (World Cup, Wimbledon, sister in town) so my gaming hours has gone down quite a bit. Still, I just managed to finish Radiant Historia a few days ago so here are my thoughts on it.

TLDR Worth it for the story/idea. Especially if you weren’t like me and didn’t watch a LP of it thinking the game would never price drop and therefore you wouldn’t buy it. A bit weak on the battle system but overall a very solid package.

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