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Author Topic: Obscure 'n' old video game soundtracks  (Read 941 times)
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« on: January 13, 2023 @660.36 »

I've always found the fact super interesting that there's a ton of games that realistically, barely anyone ever played. The work of writers, composers, who perhaps put their heart into it, all is lost to time, never to have been experienced by more than a few people.

Think about old licensed games for consoles like the GBA or the DS, that feasibly only a few thousand children ever played, let alone completed, or even remember to this day.

As opposed to stories that require you to play a whole game to experience, let's make this a thread for cool obscure video games' music; those tracks that might be super interesting or funky but never really were listened to by more than a few kids who accidentally got gifted the game for Christmas 2007, so to speak.

I'll start with a personal favorite, a game that I own and have even completed as a kid but that is entirely obscure. I have never seen anyone mention or discuss it online despite it being genuinely good. It's the game Mister Slime / Mr Slime Jr depending on region, for NDS.

The soundtrack is particularly dear to my heart because it's apparently varying from the developers beat-boxing a really strange beat to simple low fidelity funk. It's so odd but really nice in its own way. I am glad that some tracks have been uploaded to the net at least so I can share them with you:







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« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2023 @679.47 »

I played Arkanoid DS when I was younger, and though I don't really know the exact level of obscurity it sits on, I can at least say that 1). VGCharts reports 0.06m North American sales (no data on the other regions) and 2). it is generally agreed upon that it's a bad game lol. In any case: nobody is talking about this game.

That said, when I replayed the game for nostalgia value a while back I noticed the soundtrack is actually way better and more varied than you would expect from an Arkanoid game! It also fits the very Y2K presentation as well, I feel (see attached image).




^-- (my favorite :ozwomp:)



* arkanoidds.png (188.9 kB, 400x446 - viewed 102 times.)
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« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2023 @858.33 »

Alpha Storm is apparently too obscure of a game to have a soundtrack video on YouTube, but I swear that it has a really good soundtrack. It switches back and forth between midi and CD tracks, and I haven't listened to the midis with a better sound card than Sound Blaster 16, but the CD tracks are great.
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« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2023 @675.42 »

There used to be these cheap CDs filled with shareware called "Galaxy of Games" that I used to get as a child. One of the disks had a game called Moon Buggy with a pretty good soundtrack, somewhat dark and dancy:



If you like that one, you might also enjoy the music of Scorcher, even though it is probably a lot less obscure. I played it on PC, but it was also available on Sega Saturn:



Another childhood favorite is the soundtrack to Golvellius on Sega Master System. Again, it is not that obscure of a game, but I enjoy the soundtrack so much that I have to share it. All of the boss music is very dancy, but this is one of my favorite songs:



Finally, I will share the fantastic soundtrack of the arcade game Cleopatra Fortune. I had the PS1 version as a child, but I don't hear about it much:



I will try to think of more...
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« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2023 @160.81 »

When I got Cleopatra Fortune, I also got another less heard of PS1 game, Miracle Space Race. Both of them were discount items that came with a memory card and a controller with a clear plastic shell in a funky neon color, like so many electronics of the early 2000s. In this case, they were both a lime green...Anyway, Miracle Space Race has a very short soundtrack, but I enjoy it a lot:



I wouldn't call Croc: Legend of the Gobbos an "obscure" game per se, as it was made by Argonaut Games, the same team that worked on Star Fox. However, it seems like it often gets lost among the other titles that were released around that time (like Super Mario 64, Crash Bandicoot, and Spyro the Dragon). The game is pretty short, but I love the controls and the soundtrack. There is a fluidity to the character movement that is pleasing to me. And there are some snazzy little tunes throughout the levels, from the mellow to the funky. Something about this one speaks to me:



I once found an NES game called MagMax in a bargain bin at a chain of stores that have long since closed down. I think it only has one short loop within its soundtrack, yet there is something charming about it...Although, it is a very happy sounding backdrop for one to be running around as a mech destroying spaceships. Haha!:



The Immortal has a pretty epic soundtrack. One might not hear much of it because the game itself is tough as nails! I couldn't tell you how popular it was in its heyday as I got it much later as an NES cartridge from a pawn shop, but I will include it here anyway...I imagine that it had to have been somewhat well-known at the time as it is composed by the maestro Rob Hubbard and was released by EA:



If you haven't heard of him, Rob Hubbard is definitely worth checking out. He is probably best known for all of the glorious music that he made for games on the C64 (like Crazy Comets, International Karate, The Last V8, and many others).

There isn't much to say about Shanghai. It was simply mahjong on the Sega Master System. This 46-second loop was indelibly imprinted upon my brain during childhood:



Since it came out late within the lifecycle of the Sega Genesis, Ristar: The Shooting Star does not seem to be well-known. While it plays very differently from Sonic, its character design, vivid colors, and soundtrack might get one to think of it:



Shivers was a horror themed puzzle game for the PC, in the same vein as other point-and-click games like Myst. It was a little cheesy, with cutscenes that play out like a B-movie, but a couple of the songs on its soundtrack are straight fire:





...Ok, that's all I got for now. More later? Great shares everyone!
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« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2023 @230.39 »

Only ones I can think of off the top of my head right now are Knife Edge: Nose Gunner and BattleTanx, only reason I know about the former is because of a friend who played it




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« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2023 @304.29 »

A rather obscure soundtrack has Beetle Crazy Cup (Beetle Buggin) for PC. There aren't many racing games sounding like The Beach Boys.

https://invidious.snopyta.org/playlist?list=PLQsbMI4FGgJoW8uUNM0Oov-0-RExQEbSu
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLQsbMI4FGgJoW8uUNM0Oov-0-RExQEbSu
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« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2023 @695.02 »

rex another island!! it’s probably up there with my favourite game soundtracks. here’s a song from the game. honestly the entire game is really good- and criminally underrated. i’ve never met another person who’s heard of it at all! i decree everyone here with a couple bucks to spend on an obscure indie game tries it out because i desperately want more people to know about it  :chef:
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« Reply #8 on: March 06, 2023 @722.35 »

I don't know how obscure soul blazer is, but I never see anyone talking about it and it's one of my favorite games on the snes and the soundtrack is very nostalgic for me!
here's my favorite song:

and this song that plays in the world that you enter through a painting really conveys the feeling of exploring a very strange place:

and the most nostalgic song for me is this town theme that plays before you restore the town:

listening to these songs makes me want to play again haha
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« Reply #9 on: March 07, 2023 @675.09 »

ive been WAITING FOR A TOPIC LIKE THIS  :ozwomp:



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« Reply #10 on: March 07, 2023 @694.21 »

Behold, the greatest main menu theme in videogames, period:

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« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2023 @752.87 »


^-- (my favorite :ozwomp:)

I love any game that has at least one jazz fusion track on it! It definitely isn't the first genre I'd think of when I think Arkanoid, but perhaps that's why it sounds so good?  :ok:

Finally, I will share the fantastic soundtrack of the arcade game Cleopatra Fortune. I had the PS1 version as a child, but I don't hear about it much:



Holy smokes, this actually blew me away:omg:  I think I'll take a look at this game simply because the soundtrack sounds so good, thanks for putting it forward!

Behold, the greatest main menu theme in videogames, period:



It actually surprises me whenever I discover how many video games that virtual pet franchises like Tamagotchi actually got. Like, I didn't even know there was an original Gameboy Tamagotchi game until this year! But hey, this tune is really catchy, which from my experience with other virtual pet video games, is par for the course it seems.

There are a couple of games I can think of that would be considered 'obscure' and also have a notable soundtrack.
The first one would be a PS1 game called Shadow Master. It's an FPS (which as you can imagine, had questionable controls since it was on the PS1) that was published by Psygnosis. I rented it from my local video rental store called Pick-a-Flik (great name, eh?), and for whatever reason it made a sizeable impression on me. The game is quite hard,  :ohdear:  not just because of the controls but because it's genuinely difficult. Once you get used to the controls it's not so bad. But yeah, the soundtrack has a lot of great tracks. Overall the soundtrack has this strange, dark jungle / dark ethereal feel to it that really stuck in my mind. Here are a couple of tracks that I remember fondly:



The other game I thought of was Survival Kids for the Gameboy Color. I'm actually not 100% sure how obscure this is, but I don't ever see it mentioned anywhere so it has to be at least somewhat unknown. It's a story driven, open ended survival game with multiple endings. Probably one of my favourite GBC games, and also one of the most expensive GBC games I own lol.  :ok:



Anyway, that's all I've got for now. Great tracks everyone!
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« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2023 @233.30 »

There are some serious bangers here!!! I gotta listen to them all at some time, but the Mister Slime and Arkanoids DS soundtracks are so good!

Oh man, this is one of the few threads I feel qualified posting in- check this/i] out:



This is Der Clou 2, known as "The Sting!" in English. It's this cool 2001 PC game made by Neo Software (now Rockstar Vienna). You basically lead a team of burglers with you on a variety of heists as you break into various businesses and make out with the goods. It has this cool system where you first plan out the whole heist, not getting caught and allowing you to just wander the map freely. Then you hit play and get to see the entire plan executed in real time, only stopping when you get caught or escape. It's really fun!



Anyway, it's got this bangin' soundtrack that blends jazz and blues with a dramatic, modern (for 2000s) sound. Most of the level themes manage to be absolute grooves while still feeling like you're sneaking about, not trying to get caught. Track 8 above is one of my favorites, this real bluesy piano piece that just fits a bar so well, it's super comfy. Track 9 is my all-time favorite, though, it plays when you're exploring the overworld in between heists, and it has this sublime flute solo in the beginning that has stuck with me for years!



Unfortunately, it's hard to find in its complete form. For one, when you look up "The Sting", you just get the movie, so it helps to search it up by its German name instead. Then when you find that, you're likely only gonna find the single playlist on YouTube with all the music. Then you realize that the YouTube tracks, while mostly solid, are actually incomplete! Track 8 and 9 got it the worst, I feel.

There's an entire section of Track 8 that's missing! Like, in the video, you can hear where it abruptly cuts to the end. And the video for Track 9 not only cuts out the flute solo in the beginning, but it also cuts out the flute almost entirely? Like, even in the part of the video you get to hear, the flute is just... missing notes? I'm guessing it has to do with regional differences or something, but the version of the game I own had a lot more flair to its music, that's for sure.



If you like what you hear and want the full versions, I have most of the music on my hard drive. Like, the full versions, with the extended cut of Track 8 and the flute solo and all that jazz (hehe). Just shoot me a PM if you're interested! I want to help keep this game's soundtrack alive.
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