Opinions of Vasteel?

Started by hizaygizirlz, 04/24/2006, 12:13 PM

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hizaygizirlz

I saw a game which, I believe was ported to duo by working designs called Vasteel.  I was wondering if anyone had played it or had any opinions of it.  Is it a traditional RPG?  Also what is a good price to pay for it?  Price isn't really and issue if its complete and I want it i will get it.  I just don/t want to pay $50 when its really worth 20$ and so forth.

So basically i'm interested in what type of game it is i'm assuming RPG as well as a fair price and peoples personal reviews of the game
Thanks
Gypsies did it.

 Got no luv for the krackers only slugs for the krackers!

td741

It's more of an action-strategy game based on the CD 2.0 system.  (So any CD-based Turbo/PC-Engine system can play it.)

The following is from memory, I still have the game and I think I enjoy it if I popped it in today, but I might be fuzzy on details:
You can play this game as either side in an inter-planetary conflict and if I remember correctly there is also a 2 player competitive option.  (I think there was even a Computer vs Computer option?)

Short form: I think it's a fun game, but the strategy element is a little light and exploiting a few bugs makes the game easy if you can master your mech.

You start off a level I think with a map of planets/space stations you can try and invade.  You also have a certain amount of mechs (each "unit" you move on the map is a seperate kind of mech".)  You can also build more mechs inside factories.  There is a wide variety to choose from.  One side tends to have weaker but cheaper mechs and the other is a bit more pricey.  (The mechs on either side are different.)

Battles are done as action-sequences (you can select to have the system control the mechs and auto-battle if I remember but your best bet is to control your mech.  Once you get good at it a weak mech could destroy a strong mech with enough skill and patience.)  

Terrain battles will occasionally have obstacles that impede movement which is good when you're battling the computer. :P

Then there are cities. (or are they bases?)  If I remember the more cities you control the more money you get per round.  You control a city by either battling the mech if there is one stationned there or by destroying the city's core.  The city has turrents and the core is armed.  The weapons automatically fire on the mech of the opposing side to the city's.  (You can station a mech in your own city without being fired upon.)  There's a strategic element here I'll let you discover. :P

Finally there are bases/fortresses?  They are better armed and I think once you capture this, you win the map?  (I'm not 100% sure though).

The game was great for its variety of play modes and variety of mechs.  One of the few games that used the size of CD without resorting to cramming CD audio and cinematic sequences (although there is both).  I wasn't fond of it's muzak and the chip tunes are better (it also speeds up play as this game loads often.)

Ultimately, it's not as challenging as say: Millitary Madness, but it's fun nonetheless.

On a side note: Vasteel 2, is closer to Macross: Love Song.  It boasts support for the Arcade Card, Memory Base 128, Mouse.  The animated sequences are really nice, it only loads once per map (yay arcade card), but the battles are not action sequences.  AFAIR, there are experience points for those that survive battles as well.

hizaygizirlz

Thanks for such a detailed reply the game sounds interesting i will probably try and obtain it
Gypsies did it.

 Got no luv for the krackers only slugs for the krackers!

CrackTiger

Its an awesome sci-fi war-sim where you control your units(actiony) in battles. But you can the battles to auto if you want.

If you liked Military Madness, then you'll probably like Vasteel.

The only bad thing about it is some of the bgm music.
Justin the Not-So-Cheery Black/Hack/CrackTiger helped Joshua Jackass, Andrew/Arkhan Dildovich and the DildoPhiles destroy 2 PC Engine groups: one by Aaron Lambert on Facebook, then the other by Aaron Nanto!!! Him and PCE Aarons don't have a good track record together! Both times he blamed the Aarons and their staff in a "Look-what-you-made-us-do?!" manner, never himself nor his deranged/destructive/doxxing toxic turbo troll gang which he covers up for under the "community" euphemism!

Keranu

I've really been wanting to play this game for years, it looks so awesome.
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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CrackTiger

I forgot to mention that its also got some of the best effects in a PCE/Turbo game.

Like 20 layers of parallax, multiple scrolling backgrounds, transparent layers of backgrounds, some of which peel off of one another and smoothly warp around super Mode-7'y.
Justin the Not-So-Cheery Black/Hack/CrackTiger helped Joshua Jackass, Andrew/Arkhan Dildovich and the DildoPhiles destroy 2 PC Engine groups: one by Aaron Lambert on Facebook, then the other by Aaron Nanto!!! Him and PCE Aarons don't have a good track record together! Both times he blamed the Aarons and their staff in a "Look-what-you-made-us-do?!" manner, never himself nor his deranged/destructive/doxxing toxic turbo troll gang which he covers up for under the "community" euphemism!

Keranu

Wow, I had no idea Vasteel had any special effects like that.
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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motdelbuort

Quote from: "CrackTiger"I forgot to mention that its also got some of the best effects in a PCE/Turbo game.

Like 20 layers of parallax, multiple scrolling backgrounds, transparent layers of backgrounds, some of which peel off of one another and smoothly warp around super Mode-7'y.

 :^o

hizaygizirlz

So is the game worth 40-50$ complete?  Or is it one of those games that i could get for cheaper w/ patients.  I don't have to get a new game now it just looks really interesting.  I recently aquired a copy of Dragon Slayer (U.S.) and that can certainly keep me busy for 20-25+ i imagine.
Gypsies did it.

 Got no luv for the krackers only slugs for the krackers!

hizaygizirlz

Sorry for the dumb spelling error.  Perhaps before a new Duo game i can invest $3 in a dictionary
Gypsies did it.

 Got no luv for the krackers only slugs for the krackers!

CrackTiger

Quote from: "motdelbuort"
Quote from: CrackTigerI forgot to mention that its also got some of the best effects in a PCE/Turbo game.

Like 20 layers of parallax, multiple scrolling backgrounds, transparent layers of backgrounds, some of which peel off of one another and smoothly warp around super Mode-7'y.

 :^o

Try playing the game for yourself. :idea:

The pile of paralax is in some of the ship on ship battles.

There are multi background bases and space fights.

Some of the space fights have transparent layers of bg, one or two of which peel off of the first and then warp all over.

This isn't "Sapphire features super realtime 3D graphics that put the PSX to shame", this is just a matter of fact.
Justin the Not-So-Cheery Black/Hack/CrackTiger helped Joshua Jackass, Andrew/Arkhan Dildovich and the DildoPhiles destroy 2 PC Engine groups: one by Aaron Lambert on Facebook, then the other by Aaron Nanto!!! Him and PCE Aarons don't have a good track record together! Both times he blamed the Aarons and their staff in a "Look-what-you-made-us-do?!" manner, never himself nor his deranged/destructive/doxxing toxic turbo troll gang which he covers up for under the "community" euphemism!

OldRover

Hah, how ironic...one of the things I did during the couple of days without internet access is play through Vasteel once again (played Fallial). I'll try to give a very thorough breakdown of how the game works (WARNING: spoilers ahead...):

Basically, this game is a strategy/arcade hybrid. You can choose which character you're going to play as, Fallial (the 49th emperor of Belose) or Stefan (his rebellious younger brother). The idea is, regardless of which character you play as, to conquer all enemy planets. At first, a planet is a single map, and often somewhat small. The first battle is the same for both characters, and then the planets are different for each character.

Each character has their own Production Unit, or "base", on each map. For each map of a planet, your objective is to destroy this base by fighting your way through enemies. All of the machines are called ATACs (the manual gives the meaning of this acronym, I don't quite remember what it means). Each character starts out with a squad of ATACs and a certain number of cities and factories under their control. As the game progresses, the balance of controlled cities and factories becomes in the opponent's favour. Contrary to popular belief, the factories on the maps CANNOT make new ATACs, only the Production Unit can.

Each ATACs is designed for a specific type of combat and movement. Some are aquatic ATACs, some are desert ATACs, etc. Then there is a class of ATAC called "ALL", which simply means that the ATAC can function in any environment with average ability. Some are very powerful in their chosen environment but extremely weak outside of it (example: Stefan's "Leech"...a savage killer in the deep sea but a sitting duck on land).

Combat is arcade-style. In combat, you have three main attack methods: missle fire, machine guns, and close combat. This applies to the majority of the ATACs. However, there are also transport ATACs...these work differently. There's two types of transports, one that holds a single ATAC and only has machine guns (no missles nor close combat ability) and the other is a massive battleship that only has cannons (no machine guns or close combat).

All throughout each map, there are cities and factories. There are two ways to capture these: either by destroying the core, or by defeating the enemy ATAC stationed there. The core is a round energy cannon that kicks your ass if you don't fight wisely. The Production Unit also has a core, but it moves around and hits a lot harder...requires a bit more strategy to defeat. Once a city or factory is captured, you can use them to replenish an ATAC's hitpoints and weapons store. It takes a full game turn (in other words, after your turn and then after the enemy's turn) to get this replenishment. Cities will restore 25% of your hitpoints and weapons, while factories will restore 100% of your hitpoints and weapons. If the core has been destroyed, it too will replenish itself over the next few turns.

You also have two types of environments: planet surface and space. Your first three planets will be single-map surface areas. After that, each planet starts with a space area and then to the planet surface. Capturing cities, factories, and the production unit in space areas is much more difficult than on the surface for some reason.

Once you destroy the core of the production unit, you've won the map.

Fallial's strongest ATACs are his space and all-terrain models. Of particular note are the Stormer, the Dagger, and the Scythe for the all-terrain models and the Redhulk and the all-powerful (but terribly expensive) Reaper for the space models. Fallial lacks desert ATACs of any quality until late in the game (when the Sphynx becomes available) but he does have a decent selection of tropical ATACs. His selection of arctic ATACs is decent but most of them are slow. Fallial has the best battleships in both space and on land (the Bertha in space and the Destroyer on land...both are true killing machines).

Stefan's strongest ATACs are his desert and aquatic models. Of particular note are the Leech (this thing WILL kick your butt in the deep sea), the Poorboy, and the Blueclaw for aquatic ATACs and the Bile and the Marauder for the desert (he has a "boxing" ATAC designed for the desert which kicks ass but I forget its name). Stefan lacks good arctic ATACs until late in the game (when the Shredder becomes available) and his all-terrain models are somewhat lacking (the Electro, available late in the game, is a very good all-terrain machine). Stefan does have two very good space ATACs, the Explorer (available from the first space map) and the Strype (available later in the game), but they're no match for Fallial's Reaper.

The strategy for both characters is quite different, and varies from map to map. Here's some examples:

For Fallial, it's best to focus on big powerful ATACs in smaller numbers and preferrably ones that carry huge amounts of missles (such as the Squidgit, which is tough, fast, and armed to the teeth). In space levels where the Reaper is available, it's best to save up money to buy one rather than buying lesser machines...a Reaper in your army and nothing stands a chance (you can take on the production unit core head-on and win without worry). The Destroyer on land is an extremely effective killer, with its first three cannons able to fire at once on one target, delivering three shots at once and cutting down most ATACs in mere seconds. But you need mastery over Fallial's ATACs before committing to a smaller force. They may be tough, but even the small fries on Stefan's side can be a pain until you get used to the game. Of course, once you're comfortable with the big machines, you'll be a juggernaut. :) Big players, such as the Scythe and the Stormer, will easily conquer city after city with little resistance. Of course, master Fallial's small-fry space machines (like the Intruder) and you can conquer half the map before the enemy even knows what's going on. Try to avoid Fallial's Grunt-class ATACs...they may be cheap but they're awful slow and weak. The exception to this is the Sand Grunt, which is quite useful on sandy maps.

For Stefan, the best thing to do is deploy smaller ATACs in mass numbers and have just a few heavy machines. Stefan's Scouts are small and light but can really move and they're armed with tons of missles (a Scout in the right hands can wipe out a Stormer!). The Blender is a very effective front-line unit when you bring them out in force, since their firing time is very quick and they move fast enough to dodge incoming missles. Stefan excels in the desert though...the Bile is an extremely powerful machine with tons of hitpoints and very powerful missles (bad in close combat though). The Marauder (which you get later on in the game) can really give a beating as well. Tropical ATACs like the Grinder are very useful for many maps, but lesser tropical ATACs such as the Nutcase and the Phreak are better suited for mass deployment. As mentioned before, the sea is where Stefan's ATACs shine the most, with a whole series of claw-type aquatic machines and his dreaded Leech, which moves extremely fast in the water and is armed with heavy-damage missles. In space, Stefan is at a real disadvantage, but bringing out a few Explorers makes things go better (they're somewhat expensive at first). Scouts work surprisingly well in space. Get a few Replicas as well, and arm the front line with some Protobots. As for battleships...well, here's where you don't want to rely on them, because Stefan's battleships are quite "teh sux0r". The Carrier is a pretty decent land battleship, but never EVER use the Toaster, as it is extremely weak. His space battleships aren't much better. In general, try to avoid transports with Stefan unless necessary.

There are quite a few fun things you can do to outwit the computer, many of which are due to technical details of the combat engine:
-In levels with trees or obstacles that cannot be shot through, position yourself so that your opponent wastes their missles shooting at you but hitting the obstacle instead. Then move in for the kill.
-When defending a city, dodge the enemy missles and let the city's defences do the hard work for you.
-When defending a factory, there are two laser cannons directly below you (this is true of both characters). Hide behind the large circular obstacle near them and let the lasers nail the invader for an easy win.
-Missles fire at different rates. For slow-firing ATACs, press fire before you wish it to actually be fired, then aim...with practice, you'll be able to shoot-and-evade very well with slow-firing ATACs.
-On mountains or in asteroid fields, let the rocks do the damage for you! (Be careful in asteroid fields though...they come from all directions.)
-You can normally only build six new units per turn. However, if you have a battleship that can hold 3 ATACs placed at the build points, you can build more than 6 per turn. Make sure you still have one space unoccupied though or the game won't let you build anything (obvious bug).
-When right on top of the enemy's Production Unit, place either a battleship or a powerful ATAC on the upper-left hex. That's where the computer always builds new ATACs first, so any new ATAC built by the computer will be put there...and into the hands of death. This is especially true when playing as Fallial...place a Destroyer on that hex and nothing he builds will survive five seconds.

As for effects...it's very true, Vasteel has quite a few graphical effects that are just simply incredible for this little machine...I have no idea how they pulled off most of them. Most of them are seen on the space maps though...the "Space Vacuum" combat area simply has to be seen to be believed...it looks like Genesis-style parallax!

If anyone wants any more information on this game, including strategies or whatnot, feel free to let me know...this is a game I know VERY much about. :D
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GUTS

All I remember about that game is that the music was the most god awful bullshit I've ever heard in a game, EVER.  Easily the worst music of all time.

esteban

Quote from: "GUTS"All I remember about that game is that the music was the most god awful bullshit I've ever heard in a game, EVER.  Easily the worst music of all time.
Goddam, all you haters out there! :)  I'm not singling (sp?) out GUTS, because everyone I know isn't fond of the music (including most folks here, it seems)...

Let me go on the record: Vasteel has GRREAT! tunes. It's a little lite-jazzy, sure, but they are great and you don't mind them looping as you play for long periods. I wish more games had music like this, since it really fit the mood / tempo of the game.

I hereby dub the genre "spaceage lite-jazz".

I'll be the first to admit that TONS of videogame soundtracks are MUZAK. Vasteel, however, is far from bad muzak.

Come on GUTS, do you really think Vasteel's spacey lite-jazz is worse than all the generic + generic + generic game soundtracks out there? :) I'm serious... in videogames, we don't get to hear space-jazz like this, and we're missing out! :)

Of course, musical tastes are highly subjective, and I really don't have a problem with anyone who doesn't like the music in Vasteel :) -- that's why the option for chiptunes exists, I suppose :)
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motdelbuort

Quote from: "CrackTiger"
Quote from: "motdelbuort"
Quote from: "CrackTiger"I forgot to mention that its also got some of the best effects in a PCE/Turbo game.

Like 20 layers of parallax, multiple scrolling backgrounds, transparent layers of backgrounds, some of which peel off of one another and smoothly warp around super Mode-7'y.

 :^o

Try playing the game for yourself. :idea:

The pile of paralax is in some of the ship on ship battles.

There are multi background bases and space fights.

Some of the space fights have transparent layers of bg, one or two of which peel off of the first and then warp all over.

This isn't "Sapphire features super realtime 3D graphics that put the PSX to shame", this is just a matter of fact.

I've been meaning to play it again, but I seriously don't remember any of that. I remember a map grid and crude single plane overhead mech battles.

About the music, it doesn't fit the game to me at all. But I still like it, because intense music on the map screen would wear you down in a mostly slow paced game like this. But there's always the PSG (?) soundtrack as an alternative.

Keranu

I'm sure I would totally dig the soundtrack of Vasteel because of the awesome points Steve made. Thumbs up, buddy!
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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JoshTurboTrollX

Vasteel.

Good game, not Neo Nectaris good, but still a good game.

The music isn't bad, its just odd.


It grows on you.


TurboSage
Jossshhhhh...Legendary TurboTrollX-16: He revenge-bans PCE Developers/Ys IV Localizers from PCE Facebook groups and destroyed 2 PC Engine groups: one by Aaron Lambert on Facebook, then the other by Aaron Nanto!!! Josh and PCE Aarons don't have a good track record together! Both times he blamed the Aarons and their staff in a "Look-what-you-made-us-do?!" manner (extortion!), never himself nor his deranged, destructive, toxic turbo troll gang!

td741

Well the music isn't *THAT* bad, but I still consider it muzak-ish.  I did play through the game once and a half times with it and didn't go insane.  (I generally tend to prefer redbook audio to chip tunes since I prefer the audio quality.)

However, from memory there wasn't much variety in the tracks and switching to chip tunes did speed up the game a bit (loading, pause while finding the audio track, etc.).

What really impressed me about the game was it's variety:
- Both sides had different ATAC's, they moved a bit different, they had different armour, they looked different
- You could play either side in single player
- If I remember correctly: 2 Player mode and Computer VS Computer mode?
- Arcade Battles or Computer battles if you'd prefer more a strategic game.

GUTS

I stick by my guns, worst soundtrack ever.  That type of music does not belong in a video game, it belongs in an elevator.

_Paul

Im intrigued to hear it now. Anyone have an mp3 they could link to?

esteban

Quote from: "GUTS"I stick by my guns, worst soundtrack ever.  That type of music does not belong in a video game, it belongs in an elevator.
I take it you're not a fan of spaceage lite-jazz, then? :)

I wasn't kidding either: we're missing out. More games should have music like this! :D
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Keranu

I think spaceage-jazz fits perfectly for a space themed strategy game. Strategy games require thinking and what better music to have when thinking than some soft jazz? I certainly wouldn't be able to think if the music was composed of twin lead guitars doing duel solos every other minute ;) . I'm definitely intrigued to hear this soundtrack, I dig soft music like that.
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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OldRover

Music is always a very personal thing. The music in Vasteel is certainly not for everyone, but I liked it a whole lot...and I tend to dislike jazz altogether (not my thing). Much of it is definately "elevator music" though.

And yeah, td741...there was 2 player mode and a com-vs-com mode as well.
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GUTS

Haha no actually I hate jazz, I don't know why the hell Cliff Huxtable loved it so much.  I think jazz is something you have to be in your 50s to really like, then it probably just clicks and you're like "holy shit, this music rules!"

I think Vasteel would have done better with a symphonic soundtrack, that kind of stuff fits epic war games better.  I always think better with some Mozart sounding stuff playing in the background.

Keranu

A symphonic soundtrack would've been cool too, however I think "space age jazz" is more fitting for a space themed strategy game. A strategy game that takes place strictly on Earth or another planet would definitely be more fitting for the symphony.
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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esteban

Quote from: "GUTS"Haha no actually I hate jazz, I don't know why the hell Cliff Huxtable loved it so much.  I think jazz is something you have to be in your 50s to really like, then it probably just clicks and you're like "holy shit, this music rules!"

I think Vasteel would have done better with a symphonic soundtrack, that kind of stuff fits epic war games better.  I always think better with some Mozart sounding stuff playing in the background.
Yeah, I hear you :). The soundtrack from Neo Nectaris would have fit nicely in Vasteel for you, I think :).

Personally, I always thought the Neo Nectaris soundtrack was too grand  for the game (since Nectaris' battles aren't "sweeping" and "epic", rather, they feel like isolated, lonely battles in a closed-system).

Don't get me wrong, the Neo Nectaris soundtrack rules and still compliments the game -- I just wonder how a different soundtrack (more sparse, more harsh, more electronic, less lush) would sound. I can understand why folks here might wonder what a different soundtrack in  Vasteel would sound like...
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Keranu

You could always swap the CD tracks in Vasteel with different ones ;) .
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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ParanoiaDragon

The music is incredible in Vasteel, but I feel it's mostly out of place.  But that doesn't make it crap, that's for sure!  As for Jazz, I'm not a big fan, I love acid jazz, but real jazz, it just depends on the song, I can love it, or just be bored with it, it depends.
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GUTS

Yeah those Military Madness games would have been great with some sad, empty sounding songs.  I always got that feeling of isolation too when I would play the first game; the atmosphere was one of the great things about it.

OldRover

I oggified the entire Vasteel soundtrack and am uploading it right now to my server. Sorry, I don't do mp3. :D Anyways, it'll be available soon. I've given each track the proper filename, but there is one track that I don't remember where it's used, and then there's a track I've never actually heard in the game before so I don't know what to call it. Anyways, I'll post again (or just edit this post) when the files are uploaded.

EDIT: Okay, here they are:My personal favourites are land city battle, battleship battle, mountain battle, production unit battle, shallow water battle, swamp battle, and of course, final battle (I've been known to play just that track on repeat for hours!).
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Keranu

Dude, those songs nod recommended were all awesome (plus the ice track I listened to afterwards)! It wasn't nearly jazzy as I thought, even though the songs will have that really jazzy part in them, but it sounds excellent! I can see the space-age jazz in it a bit, but it was totally different than I expected. Worst game soundtrack? No way, not by a long shot!
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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motdelbuort

I just started playing Vasteel again. I'm playinga as Falail and I'm on the 4th or 5th map. For me it's the second space map. The graphics do get noticeably better in the space levels for some reason. Too bad they didn't make them a bit more complicated on the planets. I still hold that this combo strategy/arcade battle is a great formula. If it was a straight up strategy game like Military Madness I would probably not do as well. I like being able to get good at holding cities and things with weak mechs, and then pummeling the enemy with a bunch of heavies.

Seldane

Oh man ... I gotta agree with GUTS. Worst soundtrack ever.   :lol:   Typical generic PC Engine CD elevator music*.    :?  


* Now that's a new genre for you. Also found in The Dynastic Hero. :wink:



Sorry...  :P
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Keranu

Quote from: "Seldane"Oh man ... I gotta agree with GUTS. Worst soundtrack ever.   :lol:   Typical generic PC Engine CD elevator music*.    :?
So that makes Lords of Thunder generic elevator music? :lol:
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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esteban

Quote from: "Seldane"Oh man ... I gotta agree with GUTS. Worst soundtrack ever.   :lol:   Typical generic PC Engine CD elevator music*.    :?  


* Now that's a new genre for you. Also found in The Dynastic Hero. :wink:



Sorry...  :P
Well, most video game soundtracks *are* MUZAK (from SegaCD, TGCD, SNES and up)... but I'd never single out the PCE-CD library and say it was a major purveyor of muzak (moreso than other consoles).

The reason I love old-skool chiptunes is that they (often) weren't sophisticated enough to sound like muzak -- even if they tried! SNES is the exception here, since it had fantastic sound capabilities and really offered polished soundtracks.

Vasteel simply doesn't offer you your preferred flavor of muzak, that is all ... :)
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Seldane

Well I meant that the PCE usually rely on "high" quality sound instead of high quality music. Usually it is just regular NES style muzak played on a low-quality synth. Better sound quality than chip music, but still terrible music.

I'm not saying EVERY PCE title does this, but many of them do. Same goes for other early CD-systems.
Quote from: Seldane on 04/21/2007, 07:28 PMDVDs are for suckers. Illegally pirated and stolen videos all the way. No menus. No "DO NOT PIRATE THIS!" screens. No fuss. Only perfection. I honestly only pirate movies because that "don't pirate this" screen annoys me. :wink:
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Keranu

Are you kidding? Many PCE CD games have awesome soundtracks, to me one of the biggest trademarks of the PCE entirety is it's awesome music; it was one of the first things that attracted me to the system! :D
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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esteban

Quote from: "Seldane"Well I meant that the PCE usually rely on "high" quality sound instead of high quality music. Usually it is just regular NES style muzak played on a low-quality synth. Better sound quality than chip music, but still terrible music.

I'm not saying EVERY PCE title does this, but many of them do. Same goes for other early CD-systems.
The golden age of video game music is Famicom / NES, IMO. An absolutely unbelievable breadth and variety of music pumped out of that venerable console -- defying the technical specs and everyone's expectations.

GOLDEN AGE, I tell you! It will never be matched again, in the history of video game music.

Anyway, to get back to the issue at hand: I like a lot of the muzak that you think is terrible, I think. First, I accepted that VGM was muzak. This allowed me to appreciate it for what it is, instead of comparing it to the "real" music that I love. Perhaps I'm a music snob, but it was important that I made this distinction.

I'm sure others have made a similar dichotomy -- if only because we're all trying (subconsciously) *not* to be flaming nerds :).
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Keranu

Quote from: "stevek666"The golden age of video game music is Famicom / NES, IMO. An absolutely unbelievable breadth and variety of music pumped out of that venerable console -- defying the technical specs and everyone's expectations.
I think I can agree with that :) . NES is pretty much the golden age of video gaming itself.
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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akamichi

Quote from: "stevek666"Anyway, to get back to the issue at hand: I like a lot of the muzak that you think is terrible, I think. First, I accepted that VGM was muzak. This allowed me to appreciate it for what it is, instead of comparing it to the "real" music that I love. Perhaps I'm a music snob, but it was important that I made this distinction.

What makes video game music different from "real" music?

Keranu

Vocals are usually never in video game music (then again, some genres of music lack vocals all together). Video game music is also designed so it can repeat better.  8)
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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Seldane

When I said NES style, I meant early stuff like Donkey Kong and Ice Climber (I.E. EXTREMELY lame). Guess I should have mentioned that earlier.

Other than that, NES music can be very nice.
Quote from: Seldane on 04/21/2007, 07:28 PMDVDs are for suckers. Illegally pirated and stolen videos all the way. No menus. No "DO NOT PIRATE THIS!" screens. No fuss. Only perfection. I honestly only pirate movies because that "don't pirate this" screen annoys me. :wink:
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Indeed, it's AV time. Check out: IMG! Sir, the door was open.

akamichi

Quote from: "Keranu"Vocals are usually never in video game music (then again, some genres of music lack vocals all together). Video game music is also designed so it can repeat better.  8)

Really?  So real music isn't really designed to repeat?  I mean, there's a verse, then a chorus, then verse, then chorus... then... etc etc. :)

I get what you're saying.  However, with all the talk about NES music and old school console tunes, the focus seems to be that VGM = chiptunes from the 80s and "real" music (whatever that is) isn't VGM.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this.  I just don't think there's a distinction between VGM and any other form of music which would make VGM any less than the others.

Whatever, ramble over. I'm going to sleep. :?

OldRover

There's a great distinction between lyrical music and the music used in video games. Lyrical music is designed to be foreground music...in other words, the music is intended to be heard for what it is. Video game music is intended to be background music...intended to either elicit or to intensify a particular emotion or train-of-thought attached to another form of stimulation (usually graphics or storyline). Furthermore, the repeating aspect is true...lyrical music, while it does often follow its own self-repeating style, it not specifically designed to repeat itself when the music ends. Video game music IS designed (or should be designed) to repeat itself when it ends or, in the case of non-redbook tracks, just repeat itself period.

You don't even have to be a first year Juliard student to understand these very basic concepts of music theory. :D

EDIT: Oh, I almost forgot...there is a game out there which outright breaks the unspoken rule that in-game music must never have lyrics...it's called Waku Waku 7 for the Neo Geo. Listen to the music played in Arina's stage...it clearly has lyrics in it.
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Seldane

Quote from: OldRoverOh, I almost forgot...there is a game out there which outright breaks the unspoken rule that in-game music must never have lyrics...it's called Waku Waku 7 for the Neo Geo. Listen to the music played in Arina's stage...it clearly has lyrics in it.

Or Katamari Damacy. All of the songs have vocals in them. Horrid vocals, but vocals none the less.

And Tales of Legendia. Vocals on the overworld! That is the most idiotic idea I've ever seen (or heard) in a video game. It gets SO annoying.
Quote from: Seldane on 04/21/2007, 07:28 PMDVDs are for suckers. Illegally pirated and stolen videos all the way. No menus. No "DO NOT PIRATE THIS!" screens. No fuss. Only perfection. I honestly only pirate movies because that "don't pirate this" screen annoys me. :wink:
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Indeed, it's AV time. Check out: IMG! Sir, the door was open.

Keranu

Ahh yes, nod hit it on the dot with the foreground and background design talk. By the way, I don't remember the music in Waku Waku 7 (I do remember how crazy the game is though!), but I wouldn't doubt you. I'll have to play that again, it was a pretty cool game. I'm sure there are quite a few other video game tracks with lyrics in them as well (ones where you are actually playing that is, not a cinema or anything like that).
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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Keranu

By the way, Lords of Thunder could easily pass as real music :D , and the awesome thing is that it fits very well with the game too!
Quote from: TurboXray on 01/02/2014, 09:21 PMAdding PCE console specific layer on top of that, makes for an interesting challenge (no, not a reference to Ys II).
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esteban

Aha! A discussion of VGM vs. "real" music. Nod covered most of the major points.

The most important thing, IMO, is that VGM is intended as background music. In most VGM arrangements, there is restraint -- that is, the composer purposefully "held back" and kept some instruments / melodies more subdued than you would find in a typical pop song.

The reason for this restraint? It prevents songs from becoming too grating and annoying as they endlessly loop during a game. Seriously! A pop song is not meant to be heard 50 times in a row over while playing a stage... the "subdued" and "monotone" nature of muzak / VGM is part of its design.

Even if a VGM composer doesn't do this (i.e. "hold back"), the engineers who do the sound mixing can play with the sound levels to achieve the same end result. (In extreme cases, I call it the "monotone effect", since all the sound layers are normalized and equalized and just blend together -- in other words, you have to listen very closely to appreciate all the nuances of an arrangement.

I can't tell you how many VGM soundtracks I would love to remix! You know, to really bring out certain instruments / sections of a song! To make the song more dramatic, more dynamic ... and give it more personality.

Keep in mind, of course, that the VGM vs. "real music" dichotomy is simply a way of explaining some general differences between the genres. There are tons and tons of songs that defy this dicotomy (thank goodness!). "Real music" is not a neutral term and I know it probably rubs folks the wrong way :(, sorry :). I'm making generalizations about genres.

I consider movie scores and VGM to be very closely related genres -- if that helps clarify my position.

TRIVA: Choose Momoko in stage (6? 7? I forget...) in Final Zone II and you will be treated to a great pop song w/ vocals that plays during the stage :). I love that song :) !!! Personally, I think that it would be great to have vocals in VGM during gameplay -- but the vocals should be used sparingly, with long musical interludes. I feel that this would be the best of all possible worlds...
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