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Monday, November 26, 2012

Favorite Tunes #37: Super Smash Bros. Edition

SUPER SMAASSSHHHHH BROTHEEEEEERSSSSSS!! The title scream from the first game is still the best. Even at a mere three games in, the Super Smash Bros. games are one of my favorite Nintendo properties. Masahiro Sakurai and HAL have crafted a super fighter. Well, is this series a fighter? You know, I really don't care. It's just a lot of fun. Notable for it's chaotic gameplay, the Super Smash Bros. series has fantastic original music and some of the best remixes around.

You wouldn't think a hand would be too threatening but the Master Hand hand assaults the player with a barrage of attacks and shows just how nasty five fingers can be. There are no gimmicks to the battle arena, Final Destination, which is a flat surface, making it easier for the player to focus on evading Master Hands attacks. Hirokazu Ando's original version of Final Destination is a perfect representation of Master Hand's savagery. If I recall, this thing handed quite a few gamer overs when I first started playing.

Bonus Game - Super Smash Bros. (N64)

Super Smash Bros. did much to differentiate itself from other fighters. It's gameplay style was set up so that platforming elements didn't feel out of place. This could be the reason why the bonus games felt so right. Bonus games came in two different flavors: Break the Targets and Board the Platforms. Each character had their own stage layout for both bonus games and mastery of each character's double and triple jump was needed to successfully complete each game. Break the Targets has appeared in all three Super Smash Bros. games while Board the Platforms hasn't been seen since.

Mute City - Super Smash Bros. Melee (GCN)

A hidden character in the first game, Captain Falcon was lacking his own stage. This was remedied in Super Smash Bros. Melee. Mute City is the Captain's hometown and this version of Mute City is modeled after the one in F-Zero X. The battle arena contains a rising platform that scrolls across the race track and every so often, the 30 F-Zero racers will come speeding by. If you don't get out of their way, you risk becoming Mute City roadkill. Mute City is one of my favorite arenas to battle in when I play Melee. I love this stage for it's design and the excellent Mute City remix that comes with it.

Hyrule Temple - Super Smash Bros. Melee (GCN)

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link is often looked upon as the black sheep of the Zelda series. It was radically different from the original game, featuring loads of side scrolling and a hefty dose of RPG elements. Zelda II was also much harder than it's predecessor. And yet, it's one of my favorite Zelda titles. This game introduced elements that the series would be all the poorer without. Can you imagine the Super Smash Bros. games without Link's downward thrust? Yeeshh. I don't wanna live in a world where Link can't perform that move. It was quite the wonderful surprise to hear an arrangement of Zelda II's magnificent Temple theme.

Metal Battle - Super Smash Bros. Melee (GCN)

I wanted to pick an original song from Melee to include on this list and Metal Battle won over Multi-Man Melee 2. When you pick up the Metal Cap item, your whole body is covered in metal. Due to the increase in weight, you become much harder to knock back. One of the battles in Melee's single player mode pits the player against a metalized Mario and Luigi  except their metal forums are permanent so you have to send them flying as metal. On the lower difficulty settings, the fight isn't really hard. Playing on Hard or Very Hard? Get ready for some frustration.

Fire Emblem - Super Smash Bros. Melee (GCN)

For many, then first time Fire Emblem was brought to their attention was through the characters of Marth and Roy in Melee. Their appearances sowed the seeds that would help bring the first Fire Emblem to America and Europe in 2003's GBA Fire Emblem, which was actually the seventh game in the series. This theme is an arrangement of the original Fire Emblem's Encounter theme and the Fire Emblem Main Theme, the later which has been heard in every single Fire Emblem game. HAL wisely choose to include this theme in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.

Main Menu - Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)

Like the original and Melee before it, Brawl was given a brand new Main Theme. The new theme that played during the incredible opening sequence was accompanied by Latin singing. You don't need to know the language to appreciate the brilliance of the musical piece. Brawl's first version of the Main Menu theme may drop the lyrics, but it's no less of an epic song. There would be times where I would leave the game idle on the Menu just to hear this music. Very few menu themes sound this superb.

Battleship Halberd Stage - Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)

The third Smash Bros. games offers far more music than the first two games combine. Even if you don't take into account that some themes are reused from Melee, Brawl still has plenty of brand new remixes. To unlock some songs, you have to keep an eye out for music CDs that drop at random. Thankfully Battleship Halberd is available from the get go. An arrangement of the Halberd themes in Kirby Super Star, anyone that hears this theme is sure to be hit with waves of memories from taking down Meta Knight's warship.

Airship Theme (Super Mario Bros. 3) - Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)

Say what you will about Bowser's incompetence. He constantly keeps the thing that can defeat him within Mario's reach (an axe/switch). But he really knows how to build an airship and trick it out you cannons and Bullet Bills. This certainly isn't the first time the classic Airship theme has been arranged in a Nintendo game. Even before Super Mario Galaxy, an arrangement can be heard in the N64 classic, Paper Mario.

Tunnel Scene (X) - Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Wii)

One of the many great things about the Smash Bros. series is it's homage to so many Nintendo franchises, those that are well known, have cult classic status, and those that aren't really recognized outside of Japan. Many of the lesser known properties are given respect in the form of trophies and music. Take the Japan only Game Boy game X, for instance. The first level of that game, Tunnel Scene was given a spectacular remix for Brawl and can be heard on one of the Star Fox stages. Despite never playing X or even known about it's existence before unlocking this song, this Tunnel Scene arrangement is one of my favorite pieces of Nintendo music. 

1 comment:

Adam said...

the original japanese boxart is amazing