Posts Tagged ‘Super Smash Bros.’


Super Smash Bros. Melee – “Menu 1” (Hirokazu Ando)

September 9, 2010

Super Smash Bros. is a pretty amazing series, combining characters from all of Nintendo’s games into one where they fight each other to the finish. It’s always satisfying to smash an annoying green dinosaur with a 10-ton pink weight or send a plumber packing with a few swipes of the Master Sword. Nintendo pulled all the stops with nostalgia – and if there’s one thing Nintendo is good at, it’s selling nostalgia – and tops it off with some outstanding gameplay and plenty of humor. The best in the series in my eye still stands as Super Smash Bros. Melee (2002) due to its variation in the battle modes and an engaging story mode (though unfortunately not as well-developed as it was in Brawl). The game’s Main Theme stands out as one of the original pieces composed for the title, my favorite version seen here in “Menu 1,” the main menu theme.

Super Smash Bros. Melee – “Menu 1” (Hirokazu Ando)

The main theme is a heroic orchestral piece with noble strings, driving drums, bold trumpets, and even a few bells for emphasis. The notes are high and active, giving the player a call to action, fierce battles, and amazing rewards. At only 49 seconds in length, or about the length of an NES song, the piece doesn’t need to be longer, as the menu is designed to get players out of the menu and into battle mode as soon as possible. It’s a pretty fun little track that sees multiple variations in the various battle and boss themes added to the game.

The soundtrack was directed by Hirokazu Ando, who has worked on much of HAL’s soundtracks, particularly the Kirby series.


Super Smash Bros. Brawl – “Theme of Tara” (arr. Takahiro Nishi) (2008)

January 27, 2010

Today I’ve got yet another Konami track for you, which doubles as another Super Smash Bros. Brawl track! (I must say, Brawl has a fantastic soundtrack – such a wide range of music, all popular themes from popular games!) This track is “Theme of Tara” from the original Metal Gear (1987) on the MSX2. This is great sneaking music that plays (in 8-bit form) throughout most of the game. In Brawl, this song plays in the Shadow Moses stage.

Super Smash Bros. Brawl – Metal Gear – “Theme of Tara” (arr. Takahiro Nishi)

I love “Theme of Tara” from the cheesy almost 8-bit trumpets that begin “Theme of Tara” to the slick ’60s Peter Gunn-esque guitar complete with bongo drums! (It is well documented that bongos will change a song from ‘good’ to ‘awesome’.) There are even a few mechanical chirps, referencing the sound chips it came from. I think the trumpets make it feel like Snake is saluting his superior officers before jumping in the plane and parachuting into the jungle – a really quick, simple videogame cutscene from the 1980s that tells all you need to know efficiently in all of four seconds. From this point, it’s perfect espionage music, with Snake sneaking around in the jungle and concrete bunkers – you can almost smell the cardboard box. It’s serious, it’s cool, and it’s fun – just what you’d expect from classic vgm! The Brawl mix also has some parallels with Metal Gear Solid 3, also set in the ’60s. While the loop is fairly short (and about average for vgm in1987), it has excellent rhythm and melody, which makes it a keeper. The style is also unique from the traditional ‘Konami Sound’ fare of the 1980s, feeling a tad more orchestral and seeming more in line with Hideo Kojima’s unique design philosophy. And where does the name of the song come from? Well, according to The Metal Gear Wiki, it’s because the beat sounded like “ta-rah” to Hideo Kojima!

“Theme of Tara” was originally composed by Iku Mizutani (Shadow of the Ninja, Renegade). The theme doesn’t make good use of the MSX2 sound system (unlike Solid Snake) Read the rest of this entry ?