Video Game Music from Around the Webz

Hey there, internet. I have been working on a non-blog related writing project for the past bit and as such, have been listening to a far greater amount of music than I usually do. Perhaps it’s my age talking, but Youtube is truly a wonderful invention. Sure it’s always nice to see people fall down or make fools of themselves, but there are some incredibly talented people out there putting their stuff on the site. Now if you’re like me, internet, and I assume you are, you can’t stand listening to constant midi sounds trying desperately to be music. The problem is so many of the great video game tracks were found on earlier systems. Cue various geeks who have other talents and you get a wide variety of covers to the songs. The majority of them are laughably bad, or incomplete in some major way, and there is an alarming amount which are just mindless techno, but there are some shining gems out there worth your time. Now I don’t like being a broker, especially of Youtube clips, but that’s what’s going to happen today.

Oh Mega Man, you drunk.

1. Daniel Tidwell 

Daniel Tidwell is a fairly prolific artist with a penchant for video games. He is notably the best person I’ve found on the internet when you want to find remixes of songs from Final Fantasy Mystic Quest (Horrible game, but some really great music). As can be gleaned from his username metaldaniel03, his music is not of the orchestral or synthesized kind. My selection from his library to post here is “Flight into the Unknown” from Secret of Mana, a somewhat older piece of his. While his newer Mystic Quest stuff is technically better, there simply isn’t enough great Secret of Mana covers out there and most of them cover the same three themes.

2. Taylor Davis

Of the entire list today, I most strongly recommend you to click on Taylor Davis’ name and spend a couple of hours giving patronage to her amazingly well done work. Unlike Daniel Tidwell, who focuses entirely on a rock aesthetic with his guitar, Taylor Davis specializes in the violin. Now, there are plenty of people on Youtube doing violin covers to video game songs, but she is by far the best I have found. As such, I will be posting three videos from her. The first one I’m putting up is “Beatrix’s Theme” from Final Fantasy IX, which is one of the more compelling reasons to play that game.

I put that one up first because I know a lot of my audience are fans of JRPGs. However, one of the more technically impressive solo works she has done is a cover of “Metal Gear Saga” from Metal Gear Solid 4, and I urge you to watch it even if the series doesn’t hold any interest for you.

Finally there is one song that I have heard on Youtube many times by many performers, and I have very rarely heard anyone get it right. Truthfully, it’s because it is way too demanding for a single performer to do properly. The song I’m talking about is “Time’s Scar,” also known as the intro to Chrono Cross. The slow and simple introduction to the song has lulled many violinists into thinking they can handle it, but when the song speeds up, it becomes a total mess. Taylor Davis did a collaboration with Verdegrand and joshi3ioshi and it actually manages to get the song as close to perfect as I’ve seen.

This one is far less prolific than the other two, but he’s been active over the last four years. I have to say that I’m a sucker for harmonized guitars, and I first ran across him when looking for some half decent Lufia 2 covers after playing the remake on the Nintendo DS. His best stuff comes from Lufia and Final Fatantasy VI, but truthfully that’s all you really need. My selection is the “Boss Battle Theme” from Lufia 2.
I’ll admit this one is a bit more niche than the others. These guys make amazingly detailed remixes primarily for the Etrian Odyssey series. While it is really easy to dismiss most remixes as very few ever add anything of substance, that is not the case here. The songs of Etrian Odyssey aren’t particularly wonderful, but what these artists do to them make them stand easily on their own as great musical works. Since many people have not played any Etrian Odyssey game, here’s an unaltered dungeon theme.
Now after listening to that you can appreciate the amazing work of these artists. Here is their version of the theme. (Edit: The right theme isn’t embedding, so here is a different one).

I find their work on Etrian Odyssey III to be there best, so if you’re browsing, I would start there.
5. Chrono Trigger – Chrono Symphonic 
No link this time, as this is a single piece that was put together by a large group of contributors. If you want to find it, it will be the first thing that comes up when you type in Chrono Trigger remix and for good reason. Do you have almost an hour and a half to listen to a continuous piece of music? Probably not, but that is what this is. It is a major overhaul of many themes in the game. It doesn’t just give them to you straight, but manages to be its own thing. This is great sometimes and it doesn’t work other times. However, the monumental scale deserves praise.
6. Final Fantasy XIII-2 – Gilgamesh Battle
Yeah, this isn’t some regular person’s talent; it’s an official release. A lot of Final Fantasy fans avoided Final Fantasy XIII-2 because of its predecessor. As such they missed out on a lot of great music. However, among the people who bought the game, even fewer stuck out long enough for the Gilgamesh colosseum fight DLC. I know I didn’t. However, it is a truly amazing version of the popular song, and I would recommend anyone who considers themselves a Final Fantasy fan to listen to it.
So that’s all I have to post today. As a final video, here is the trailer for the Final Fantasy XIII-2 colosseum DLC I found when I stumbled upon the Gilgamesh theme. It’s cheesy but fairly awesome. One major thing that fans of the original western release of Final Fantasy VI will notice is that the octopus is called Ultros and not the more correct Orthos which he was renamed in the Final Fantasy VI Gameboy Advance retranslation (Still no Chupon though).

5 thoughts on “Video Game Music from Around the Webz

  1. I have been doing the worst thing imaginable and looking at Final Fantasy related news, meaning I got to read comments for the last 20 minutes about how horrible every Final Fantasy since IX is over and over again. On a relevant line of conversation, I really appreciate the non-canon fanservice of the colosseum; although it would have been nice if it were free.

  2. I understand that. For instance, when that game first came out, I read the gameFAQs forums because they were dissecting the game mechanics. Then the trolls came on, I read a review, it just got bad. And I totally agree about the colosseum. What a lot of people thought would have been a better idea was if buying a fight came with a weapon and an outfit as a pack. That would have gotten them less hate.

  3. I would buy fights in the colosseum no problem. My issue is that the area had no purpose in-game. If it were a full colosseum like FFVI, but you could later buy some special fights, I think that would have been ideal.

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