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Monday, June 1, 2015

Favorite Tunes #115: That SNES Sound Chip

The SNES is quite possibly my favorite video game console of all-time. It has a phenominal library of games, a smooth, comfortable controller and the sound chip, which was actually designed by Sony (oh the irony) still amazes me to this day. Maybe one day, I'll do a feature showcasing my favorite SNES soundtracks, but until then, enjoy a selection of SNES tracks.

Mission 4 - Super Double Dragon (SNES)

Known as Return of Double Dragon in Japan, like all franchise that jumped onto Nintendo's 16-bit console, Double Dragon was given the Super label. As great it was to hear familiar songs like the Main Theme in the glorious SNES sound chip, the new tracks featured in Super Double Dragon were quite the audio treat. During the game's fourth mission, you fight it out atop moving trucks as this jam plays.

HyperZone - HyperZone (SNES)

One of the earliest games on the SNES. Showing off the power of 16-bits was of the utmost importance and alongside games like F-Zero and Pilotwings, HAL's Hyper Zone really put the system's Mode 7 capabilities to work. You read right, Hyper Zone was developed by HAL of Kirby fame. Even the music is Kirby-ish and that's to be expected since the game's sound composer was none other than Jun Ishikawa.

Athletic - Super Mario World (SNES)

Super Mario Bros. 4: Super Mario World. Woo boy, is that one mouthful of a title, much like the original Japanese anime title episodes. When the game was released in America, Nintendo's American branch decided to cut to the chase and call it Super Mario World. Much of Super Mario World's soundtrack for the level themes use the same theme in different arrangements. The Athletic theme is a quick paced, piano laced tune and like the other level themes, gets a set of bongo drums if you happen to bring Yoshi.

Mission 2 Enemy Airforce/Mission 3 - U.N. Squadron (SNES)

A port of the arcade game, in Japan, this game is known as Area 88, which is based off of a manga series of the same name that has several anime adaptations. Notable differences from the arcade version to the home port include, the option to select your mission after the initial stage, new (expensive planes to buy) and some new tracks, and regrettably, limited continues, making an already difficult game that much harder.

Bar - Front Mission (SNES)

When you think of tactical RPGs, you probably still imagine swords and sorcery coming into play. Front Mission is tactical, but gives the aforementioned mid evil trappings the boot. Instead, you duking it out on the grid in mechs, or as they are called in Front Mission, wanzers, which is German for walking tank, While the third and fourth games were released in the states, the original Front Mission wouldn't be official released until the 2007 DS port. The game's soundtrack  was scored by Yoko Shimomura and Noriko Matsueda, the later being the one responsible for this super smooth jazz theme.

Cast Roll - Mega Man X

Since those maverick stage themes get all the attention, let's shine the spotlight on some of Mega Man X's other splendid tracks, like the slow rocking Cast Roll theme. Not to be confused with the Staff Roll music, the Cast Roll is a tune dedicated to all the stars IN the game like X, Zero, Sigma, etc. Please, Mega Man X fans, I beg you, love this theme more.

Favorite Tunes Database

1 comment:

Lauren Farrow said...

I have many fond memories of playing SNES in the 90s. I used to love Super Mario World and Starfox. SNES had great graphic for the day. It was really quite cutting edge.