Category: Gaming culture
You can go on about how much you know about Mega Man’s model number or the reason for Blanka’s electrical powers, but did you know of Cosmi, Under the Skin’s alien protagonist who terrorizes Earth with bowling balls, boxing gloves and bad karaoke?
With the 30th Anniversary Capcom Character Encyclopedia, now you’ll know.
Cafés are the perfect place to sit back and relax. But what if you wanted something a bit… darker? And more soulful?
From Software has teamed up with Oz Café to bring a Dark Souls-themed café to the residents of Tokyo. For a limited time, fans of Dark Souls can come in and enjoy a life-giving Estus Flask, Successors of the Sun, Fireball (the pyromancy spell, not the drink) and a Soul Spear, among other similarly-themed dishes and drinks.
The conversion of the Oz Café is set to open on Jan. 6, 2014, with plans to further expand the café once Dark Souls II gets released in March next year.
The addition of another videogame-themed cafe simply adds one more reason to my list of why I want to visit Japan.
Typical Christmas music is one thing. Typical Christmas music arranged by the composer of Rocky IV and Transformers: The Movie for a videogame, however, is a little more special.
Scarlet Moon Records has announced that “Christmas Adventure,” a medley of Christmas music composed by 80s film composer Vince DiCola, is now available for purchase on iTunes and Loudr. The music was originally featured in Mighty Rabbit Studios’ Saturday Morning RPG, an episodic mobile and PC/Mac/Linux RPG that debuted a few months back. The medley features a number of holiday tunes, including ”Silent Night,” “Hark the Herald Angels Sing,” and “Little Drummer Boy,” redone with DiCola’s signature 80s synths and progressive rock sound.
The full soundtrack to Saturday Morning RPG, which was co-composed by both DiCola and Kenny Meriedeth, is slated to hit sometime in Jan. 2014.
The Game Music Bundle celebrates its sixth foray into providing tons of game music albums for fans at a modest price, and this one comes with a bit of a celebration to boot.
Just pitching in a dollar will score you the soundtracks to Dust: An Elysian Tail, Braid, Rogue Legacy, Electronic Super Joy and Famaze. Alternatively, paying $10 will net you 24 albums total, including jams from Guacamelee! and Mighty Switch Force 2.
Additionally, Loudr celebrated game music in general over the weekend with “Game Music Festival,” a page loaded with interviews and features ranging from an hour-long video chat with Banjo-Kazooie composer Grant Kirkhope and Deus Ex co-composer Alexander Brandon to commentary from composer Disasterpeace on his newly-composed Famaze soundtrack.
Oh God, why?
A Twitch user by the name of Moltov is currently live-streaming a speedrun of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Sounds pretty old hat, right?
Oh how wrong you are. Because Moltov is doing a speedrun with a Wii classic controller covered in honey. A controller covered in honey.
What was the thought process leading to this decision? Did Moltov expect an added challenge? Is this some weird intersection of gaming and outsider art? The mind, it is boggled.
I assume that the fact that Moltov has to repeatedly dip the controller into a bowl of honey is because he needs to give it a periodic re-coating of the bee goo. It kind of makes me want to vomit everywhere.
If you are morbidly curious, please check out the livestream.
Stuffed with turkey and pie and got that eSports itch? Well one of the biggest events of the year is going on this weekend. Dreamhack Winter 2013 runs through Saturday and features the biggest games and players from all over the world competing in Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, League of Legends, Starcraft 2, Heroes of Newerth, Battlefield 4 and Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition v. 2013.
Thanks to massive contributions from its community, the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournament is among the largest in Counter-Strike history, featuring $250,000 in prizes. All the best teams are on hand in Sweden to compete including NiP, Complexity, Very Games and Fnatic.
The Dota 2 tournament is also a big one, as teams have been fighting in online qualifiers for a month before the event. The teams that are on hand are among the best in the world, including the top two finishers at The International 2013: Alliance and Natus Vincere. They are joined by fan favorites Fnatic and Team Liquid to create a pretty incredible top four.
Starcraft 2 is also being featured rather heavily, despite just having their biggest tournament of the year. In fact, the player line-up here might even be stronger than those who fought for top billing a few weeks ago at Blizzcon. Korean Protoss player sOs, who won that last event, is on hand along with Sweden’s own Naniwa and tons of other foreign players who are competing for a $30,000 top prize.
Modding can be rewarding for both the creator and the players. And no one knows this better than Alexander Velicky.
Velicky spent over 2,000 hours creating Falskaar, a mod that adds an entire new land to experience with 20+ hours of gameplay. His work was focused on getting the attention of Bethesda, hoping to land a job with them. While he got plenty of attention from gamers and the mod community, it was ultimately Bungie that took him under their wing as an associate designer.
Velicky chronicled his experiences on Bethesda’s blogs and thanking the community for their support.
“I set my sights on a professional design job pretty early. I lowered my head, charged forward, and rarely looked back. Of course, I ensured what I was doing had a reasonable chance for success from time to time. But the most surprising of all, is who I’ve ended up with.”
“I applied to many companies, and Bungie was in my ‘huge company that will completely ignore me’ category. Well, they didn’t and look what it got me. Bungie is an awesome company with an amazing team, and I’m very lucky that they’ve decided to give me a chance. Never be afraid to try. I spent the time it took to apply and the rewards are proving to be greater than I could have possibly imagined.”
This shows that plenty of hard work can get anyone their dream job no matter the company.
Like a sudden, powerful strike unleashed by a character from your favorite RPG, the formation of videogame music cover band Critical Hit came much to the surprise of many.
For those just tuning in, Critical Hit is a newly formed game music cover band fronted by World of Warcraft composer Jason Hayes and managed by Michael “Piano Squall” Gluck. Hayes is accompanied by several high-brow musicians that perform a plethora of popular game tunes that span games like Super Mario World, Final Fantasy X and yes, even Angry Birds.
I’m of the opinion that videogame music cover bands will never get old. In fact, the more there are, the merrier. So join me as I go through Critical Hit’s recently-released Volume One track-by-track, analyzing all the musical memories and deducing just how big of a nostalgia multiplier the group has applied to my pulsating heart.
Of all the charity live streams on the Internet, Desert Bus for Hope is probably the only one where the viewers have no interest in the game being played.
Since 2007, the internet comedy troupe LoadingReadyRun has been hosting Desert Bus for Hope, a charity event where various people play the “worst video game of all time,” which in this case is a mini-game in the unreleased Sega CD title Penn and Teller’s Smoke and Mirrors. Players are challenged to drive a bus from Tucson, Arizona to Las Vegas, Nevada down a long and empty desert road.
The uneventful drive lasts eight hours, so the streamers earn their donations by performing ridiculous antics to the great amusement of the viewers. Upon one such viewing, I was treated to the entire room singing “Kung Fu Fighting” and doing karate kicks. That’s basically what you should expect.
Despite the antics, the most surprising–and impressive–part of the stream is the length of said marathon. Having started this Saturday, the team is committed to playing at least for 120 hours–all of which will be spent driving a bus through the desert.
And the party will keep on going until the donations stop. As of this moment, they have raised over $96,000 with all donations raised to go to Child’s Play.
Check out their fancy website to watch the hilarity.
Ever wonder what it’d be like if the original Mega Man had that fancy pants sound chip that the Japanese version of Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse had? Well, even if you didn’t, Chiptune artist RushJet1 has done just that with a new album entitled “Mega Man Remade.”
The album, available on Bandcamp for “Name Your Price,” features enhanced versions of all the classic tunes from the original NES game, which was originally composed by Mighty No. 9 co-composer Manami Matsumae . These tunes were redone in the audio style of those few Famicom titles like Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse (Akumajo Densetsu in Japan) and Esper Dream II that utilized the Konami-produced VRC6 micro-processor chip.
The VRC6 sound chip was co-designed by composer Hidenori Maezawa (of Contra fame) and added extra visual flair as well as three more sound channels to the Famicom’s sound capabilities, which allowed for more distinctively layered tunes. Since North American NES cartridges were incompatible with the chip, games like CVIII needed to have their music reworked in the chiptune style that most retro fans are accustomed to.
In any case, check out the reworked tracks here. Not only do they feel more refined with the added channels, but they even sport some extra quirks like some tunes from Mega Man for Game Boy.