Ogre – Grand Repeat – “GRAND REPEAT / Overture Neo-Overture” (arr. Masatsugu Shinozaki)November 25, 2009
The wargames are on! Lead your army to battle to liberate the city! Or maybe to crush the unruly rebellion… In any case, Masatsugu Shinozaka does an excellent job of remixing Hitoshi Sakamoto‘s Ogre Battle: The March of the Black Queen (SNES, 1993) classic.
This piece is the main overture to the game, calling forth images of a giant army in review, with riders approaching over the green fields and profiles of the commanders and heroes before the vanguard. It’s hard to not be pleased by the bold brass of this track and choral backup, which is a nice follow-up from Sunday’sWarCraft III tune. This is a concert recording, a practice that about this time was becoming popular for recording actual game soundtracks (it is not very commonly used though due to the large cost of hiring an orchestra). This track comes from Ogre – Grand Repeat (1996), a remix album of the first two games in the series. Incidentally, the PlayStation version of the game (1997) features a shortened version of this theme that lacks the opening.
Ogre Battle: March of the Black Queen incidentally has some musical inspiration from its title, mainly the 1974 album Queen II, which contained two tracks, “Ogre Battle” and “March of the Black Queen”. Masatsagu Shinozaki is responsible for composing the soundtracks to multiple games as well as a few orchestral arrangements, including one of my favorites, Suite Wizardry II ~Legacy of Llylgamyn~, which was recently available through Slightly Dark.