Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Lights synchronised with the Battlefield 3 theme



Just an awesome video I spotted on the BF3 Facebook page I thought I should share. I've seen some pretty crazy X-mas lights around here in Canberra but this one definitely wins a geeky award (don't think it's in Canberra though... could be wrong)!

Anyway you may have noticed updates have been few and far between because I'm currently on holidays. I'll update when I can but in case I don't get to update again, I wish all my readers a very merry X-mas and a happy new year!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Choicest VGM - VGM #41 - Ultima 6 - Bootup



Ultima 6 was the first ever Ultima game I played. I believe it was the first Ultima to have VGA (or was it EGA?) graphics and Sound Blaster audio. Anyway, Ultima had all the typical fantasy elements that get teenagers interested, especially the fact that on Earth you're basically an average teenager, but on Britannia you're a paragon of good, and you get to kick some gargoyle butt while you're at it.

This particular music played when the game was booting up and shows your character, bored while he watches TV on Earth. Suddenly a moongate opens near your house, a portal to the world of Britannia. You enter but are then immediately captured by gargoyles and they prepare to sacrifice you.

Many thanks to Tom's Ultima MT-32 MP3 Collection where you're able to download high-quality Roland MT-32 versions of the original themes.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Choicest VGM - VGM #40 - Oil's Well



Adventure games weren't the only kind of games Sierra made during the 80s and 90s. They also made games like Oil's Well, a game similar to pacman except that you control a pipe from an oil rig trying to collect points as you went deeper and deeper underground. You had to watch out for bugs damaging the pipe though!

Apparently, there was a 1983 version of the game and that's where the cover comes from for the video. I on the other hand actually played the 1990 version and this is the theme you hear in this music video.

Many thanks to the website Sierra Chest for resurrecting these classics!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Choicest VGM - VGM #39 - Stunts - Race Winner



Good memories when you hear this tune - played all the times you whip AI opponent ass!

Incidentally, here's a random YTMND page related to this track and Stunts :)

Thanks to Teppica who originally ripped these - this is how I remember the game music, played through a Sound Blaster 16.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Choicest VGM - VGM #38 - Stunts - Race Loser



Well I definitely heard this track played a few times! Especially against the more difficult opponents like Sid Vicious.

Oh and while we're on the topic of opponents, thanks to the website Giant Bomb here's a list of all the original opponents in Stunts:

  • "Squealin'" Bernie Rubber: geeky, clumsy Bernie was the easiest of all the opponents. He would generally drive slowly and frequently crash on challenging stunts.
  • Herr Otto Partz: an old German Grand Prix driver, Otto was okay on flat circuits, but faltered on stunts.
  • "Smokin'" Joe Stallin: Joe's back story said that he once rear-ended someone on a straight. As a result, he preferred twisty tracks and would visibly slow down on straights.
  • Cherry Chassis: a spoilt little rich girl, Cherry was the opposite to Joe, preferring straights to corners.
  • Helen Wheels: sexy and sassy, Helen was a competent all-rounder, but tended to be a bit reckless.
  • Skid Vicious: the toughest opponent in the game, Skid grew up on the streets and learnt to drive by outrunning police in stolen cars. Whether by design or because of a bug, Skid was capable of accelerating faster than the player, even when driving a slower car.

Thanks to Teppica who originally ripped these - this is how I remember the game music, played through a Sound Blaster 16.

2011 Soundtrack Reviewing System


It's been over three years since I first nominated a scoring system for soundtracks and it's due for a change. I've noticed that my previous scoring system placed too much emphasis on the soundtrack being of a sufficient length or good value. While these are important it got to the stage that even if an album was extremely good technically, it was possible for it to still score poorly if it was a short album. Alternatively, albums with lots of filler tracks were able to get similar if not higher scores.

So I've revisited the scoring system and to keep it in line with my changes to the game reviews, they'll now be scored out of ten.

Like before, I'll be giving the tracks an artistic merit score where a 0 is given for each forgettable track, 1 for a decent track and 2 for highlight tracks that are sensational. I then compile it together, get a percentage and then round it get a score out of 10.

Value will still be a consideration but I've taken Length out of the equation, since they're basically one in the same - the number of tracks on an album determines if it's good value for money as well. So I'll basically reserve my right to give an extra 1 point to the score if it also happens to be good value for money.

Stay tuned for a review on the Deus Ex: Human Revolution soundtrack!