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General Video Game Chat Rising: Revengeance

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3 hours ago, MemeKirisame said:

November 13, 2017 is the 25th anniversary of the Japanese Sega-CD release of Time Gal, and It was released in 1992. I chose to celebrate it, because the arcade release was only the year as 1985, and it didn't have the month and the day. I saw the long arcade gameplay and I liked it.

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I even fell in love with the protagonist, Reika. Although my waifu is Marisa Kirisame.

 

 

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That makes two of us.

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While getting a SNES Classic would still be cool, I recently realized I could get myself a Raspberry Pi, set it up with emulation software, grab a halfway decent SNES controller clone (currently eyeballing 8bitdo's offerings; in the meantime an Xbone controller has served the purpose quite well) and have more or less the same thing. Except it requires tinkering to get working, which honestly I find kinda fun/satisfying in its own way.

If the SNES Classic controllers by themselves go up for sale somewhere though I'd probably pounce on that.

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meh, SNES Classic sounds cool I guess but I feel as if I can get the same experience by just usin my Wii U for homebrew emulation. Which even then I don't use much because I just use my PC for gaming for the most part lol. I'm even getting an upgrade soon (processor/gfx card/RAM) so yeah idk. I might get it for my brother I guess lol

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2 hours ago, Captpan6 said:

I can't think of any game with such a diverse, incredible soundtrack.

Andrew Gower is a fucking musical genius, it's actually very impressive. Like yeah the original Runescape tracks were all very simple tunes and everything, but the amount of music the dude wrote and turned into Midi is incredible. I think he alone did around 100 of the original tracks or something like that. If only he was as good at balancing and creating his game as he was at music.

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Who needs the NES/SNES Classic when you can either buy an actual NES/SNES or just emulate for free on your PC

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Part of it is is that legit NES/SNESes are rather rare nowadays unless you go to specific stores that sell old systems or use amazon/ebay, and not everyone does that since online sites just aren't for everyone. The other thing of it is is that when it comes to gaming it seems that some people like to go to stores that they can easily get to or know the location of like Walmart or some shit, like there's this other place in Pennsylvania that sells old systems like playstations and shit but I had NO IDEA it even existed until I specifically noticed it, and it was in a cityish part of town that i don't go to often. So yeah, for some people it's harder than you'd think to just get one of the two.

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7 hours ago, JimPaladin said:

Andrew Gower is a fucking musical genius, it's actually very impressive. Like yeah the original Runescape tracks were all very simple tunes and everything, but the amount of music the dude wrote and turned into Midi is incredible. I think he alone did around 100 of the original tracks or something like that. If only he was as good at balancing and creating his game as he was at music.

The original and most memorable tracks were done by Ian Taylor. Harmony, Autumn Voyage, Fanfare, Horizon...all him. It's amazing in that the music I listened to most often as a free user was his and it shaped me growing up. 

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Seeing as RuneScape is an MMORPG I think the only composer that could trump Taylor is another who is worked on another MMORPG.  I really don't think that much effort goes into the music aspect of those games though. I've only ever played RuneScape; is WoW or any other game of that ilk superb with music?

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A lot of early MMOs had more traditionally substantial soundtracks whereas the tendency nowadays seems to be more subdued background and ambient music. I think it's largely because even with a good soundtrack, the music transitions during encounters and the like get really tiresome when the player experiences them hundreds of thousands of times. Also MMOs aim for much shorter encounter times (and overall speed of play) today whereas something a fight against a single enemy could take minutes in something like Everquest of Final Fantast XI. I wouldn't say MMOs are particularly bad with music, but it seems like consistent ambient soundtracks with very "commercial" instrumentation and mixing are currently more desirable than distinctive and recognizable compositions.

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It really depends on how efficient the composer is in working on video game music, too. Some play safe by making them pretty simple or really short, specially in old-school RPGs, like how JazzDance mentioned, then you have those who can make really complex stuff thanks to years of working with limited hardware, which was Tim Follin's case and other composers of the C64 and the demoscene eras. Sequencers as a whole makes music production such an easy task. which explains why an RPG like Runescape has hours and hours worth of MIDI tracks in it, and also the reason why Kevin McLeod has over two thousand royality-free music tracks available on his website. It's not just a matter of good hearing, which in itself is also extremely important.

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3 hours ago, Captpan6 said:

Seeing as RuneScape is an MMORPG I think the only composer that could trump Taylor is another who is worked on another MMORPG.  I really don't think that much effort goes into the music aspect of those games though. I've only ever played RuneScape; is WoW or any other game of that ilk superb with music?

World of Warcraft has some of the most amazing music I've ever heard in a game and has some of the best talent in the industry working behind it, but I don't think any of their composers come close to the number of Ian Taylor songs. I'm hardpressed to even think of 600 unique songs in WoW, or in any decade-or-older MMO besides Runescape, let alone anything that comes close to the like 1500-ish unique tracks Runescape currently has.

It's worth to note that Runescape was using simple midi songs even when World of Warcraft was hiring entire orchestras to compose music and using live chorus and stuff, so there's a bit of a reasonable excuse for other MMOs to fall so far behind Runescape.

2 hours ago, JazzDanceForChildren said:

whereas the tendency nowadays seems to be more subdued background and ambient music.

I'm not sure what MMOs you've been playing recently (no seriously, I'm not being condescending, I don't know what you've been playing so feel free to share examples), but soundtracks for MMOs have only been getting more and more into the foreground in recent years. It all sort of started around 2011 when the MMO Rift came out and when World of Warcraft launched its 'Cataclysm' expansion.

Take these songs from World of Warcraft, from the early 2005-2008 years.

Very ambient stuff that very rarely got too in your face. Now compare that with post-2010 stuff.

They're barely even "background" music at this point. WoW music really set the trend for bigger compositions and louder music that a lot of new MMOs quickly started copying. Final Fantasy 14 is the only major MMO at the moment that I can think of that has a significant amount of background music, but it's also an asian MMO, and I still recall quite a few sweeping tracks that were in the foreground of the experience (the big port city place and a lot of the battle music being the two main examples that come to mind).

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37 minutes ago, JimPaladin said:

I'm not sure what MMOs you've been playing recently (no seriously, I'm not being condescending, I don't know what you've been playing so feel free to share examples), but soundtracks for MMOs have only been getting more and more into the foreground in recent years. It all sort of started around 2011 when the MMO Rift came out and when World of Warcraft launched its 'Cataclysm' expansion.

Mostly Guild Wars 2. The soundtrack sounds professional, but doesn't really have a distinctive sense of character. I watched a friend play enough Elder Scrolls Online to get a sense for the soundtrack and felt that was pretty similar. Part of what I meant is a lot of design choices that were commonplace in the earliest games and were really similar to the sound choices made in offline RPGs aren't really practiced now. Things like transitioning to a noticeably different theme every single time you have an encounter or enter a shop or something. Older games like EQ and FFXI did this. The only semi-modern MMO I can think of that's really traditional in its music sensibilities in this way is Dragon Quest X, but that game isn't really a conventional MMO; it's more like a standard JRPG with online multiplayer and the music is similar in style to the rest of the series.

I don't play WoW and I don't really have a sense of its musical history, but I think part of what your describing has to do with the fact that the more of the music that is being made for it now is meant for high-level content and is written to reflect that.

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So Steam has a new software that can be run on current Samsung TVs. In a nutshell, it's Steam Link without the need to buy a Steam Link. If you have a TV, Steam can beam straight from your computer to your TV.

I've got a good number of Steam games I'll be wanting to play with a controller comfortably on my PC. While I have a small 1080p TV in my room that I have an HDMI wired into, I also have my bigass 65 inch 4K TV in the living room, and I didn't buy that beast to sit there and not have games played in glorious 4K on it. So I went ahead and tested it out. And it works alright...but with a few caveats.

Firstly, since it's beaming from my PC (mirroring my display rather than putting out the display through my TV, which is probably easier on the stream), my PC has to be running at 4K for it to interpret 4K to feed into the TV. While I think my current specs can run most non-super-demanding games at 4K, I have a 1440p monitor (since I never thought I'd need to be playing at 4K just on my small monitor), so it will only output at 1440p max. I can probably get a 4K monitor for around $400 or so, and since that's how much my current monitor cost (and it's in good shape), I could probably sell it for something like $300 and just eat the $100 turnaround, but I'd only want to do that once I'm certain that everything else about the system works fine as well.

The next issue is connectivity. I'm currently running off of Wi-Fi, and the connection was decent, but not without a few lag spikes. My apartment setup is weird with the ethernet, I'd need to buy a special adapter in order to get ethernet wired straight into the TV, but if I did that, I imagine I'd have few to no connectivity problems.

The last thing is the matter of controllers. I don't have an Xbox, so I don't have an Xbox controller. I could get one, but seeing how I have perfectly usable PS4/Switch controllers, I feel it would be silly (same reason I wouldn't be too interested in a Steam controller, including the fact that I've heard very little good things about them). I plugged my PS4 controller straight into my TV via USB, and it worked perfectly fine. Problem with that is that USB cords generally aren't very long, meaning I was sitting right next to the TV, which was fine for testing but for prolonged play would be unfeasible. The Switch controller apparently won't work at all with a USB connection; you need to run Bluetooth. And that's where things get a little fishy. I have a Bluetooth dongle that I could plug into the TV, but I don't know if the TV would be able to interpret the bluetooth dongle and accept controllers wirelessly. The setup required on my PC is mild, but that's a PC vs a TV. If I were to leave the dongle in the PC, there's no way the signal would reach through the walls and still be acceptable. And then there's the mild issue of button interfaces not reflecting to match my controller; I think some games are starting to update their interface for PS4 controller, but for those that don't, and/or if I tried using the Switch controller, it'd get super obnoxious to see Xbox "A" and have to press Switch "B" or whatever. Some games, like the Indivisible demo I tried out, bypass this by simply showing the directional face button (left, top, right, down) and adding no labels, which paradoxically makes it easier to interpret with a non-Xbox controller.

So yeah, I think we're almost at the point where I could just pop up my games on my TV without needing a million different devices, I just have to decide if it's worth getting that ethernet adapter and 4K monitor or if I should just cope with 1080p and play on the little dinky TV in my room.

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3 hours ago, JazzDanceForChildren said:

Part of what I meant is a lot of design choices that were commonplace in the earliest games and were really similar to the sound choices made in offline RPGs aren't really practiced now. Things like transitioning to a noticeably different theme every single time you have an encounter or enter a shop or something. Older games like EQ and FFXI did this.

Dynamic musical transitions (like you said, music for entering into a shop) were never all too common in (western) MMOs to begin with. Everquest, for instance, had a music track for special merchants, but not for any random shop building. Most MMO music has always been area music that plays unbroken in loops or suites throughout an area, I can't think of any early (western, I dunno about eastern) MMO that actually did dynamically changing music for entering a battle or anything like that. It was zone music that played throughout a zone, even as you went into and out of combat or mined a rock or entered a cave or whatever. 

Ambient background music was the norm for MMOs up until 2008-2010ish when orchestra and chorus tracks became a lot more common in western MMOs. I've never really played many eastern MMOs, but from my experience, they've always had generally a lot more background music to this day. 

3 hours ago, JazzDanceForChildren said:

I don't play WoW and I don't really have a sense of its musical history, but I think part of what your describing has to do with the fact that the more of the music that is being made for it now is meant for high-level content and is written to reflect that.

It's not that the newer, more foreground music is designed for high-level content at all. Music in WoW, from low-level leveling zones to high-end raids, have similar sweeping background music (I can provide a lot of examples if you want). In late 2010, the Cataclysm expansion for the game came out and part of what that expansion did was re-design the vanilla continents from the original game to update all the original zones graphically/mechanically/musically, so all of the old music got redone or entire new music was made. One of the more prominent criticisms people made about the Cataclysm expansion was how it was "the death of ambient music" in the game, and you'll see to this day occasional complaints about how WoW's music is too loud and prominent.

Prior to Cataclysm, there was like a dozen different ambient background tracks that played over all 40ish of the original zones (multiple zones shared the same music). The game went from having low-level zones with music like this;

To music like this. Each zone went from having 6-8 minutes of generic music shared across multiple zones to having 20-30 minute suites prepared specifically for itself.

*lifts himself from his feet using only the powers of his mental telepathy, the vast secrets of the cosmos at his fingertips as he prepares advanced meta-physical calculations in mere nanoseconds, unlocking further incomprehensible truths of the multi-verse* me know this shit pal.....

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