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8-Bit Mondays: Ganbare Goemon 2 – “One More Time” (Michiru Yamane)

January 19, 2010

Ganbare Goemon/Legend of the Mystical Ninja is one of Konami’s older franchises, based in medieval Japan. The series is based loosely off the exploits of Ishikawa Goemon, something of a historical Japanese Robin Hood. The game is filled with plenty of Japanese historical and cultural references such that defies any attempts at basic localization – one of the reasons why so few of the games have been released overseas. With the help of the strange dumpling-loving Ebisumaru, the legendary Goemon must save ancient Japan from demons and corrupt samurai, and all kinds of similar nonsense. However, the soundtrack to Ganbare Goemon 2 (1989) is a lot of fun and the ending theme, “One More Time” is one of my favorites on the Famicom.

Ganbare Goemon 2 – “One More Time” (Michiru Yamane)

“One More Time” has a real happy feel to it, like a festival in ancient downtown Edo. Sadly, I don’t know the actual context for it. Now granted, the song is fairly short, with a 25-second melody with variation (and it plays three times), but I think keeping with a basic set of notes, the track has a reassuring feel to it, and you don’t really want it to end. It’s got that homey taste, just like a bowl of warm rice noodles. I also love how the song fades out at the end – the chiptunes have a nice echoing effect that I think was arranged into the album. “One More Time” seems to have been used in several different games in the series, such as the main theme of “Oedo Town” in the first Super NES version. The really neat thing about this soundtrack is that it is one of Michiru Yamane‘s earliest: she is credited here as Chiruchiru Yamane (same as in Twinbee, if you remember).

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