ExP XXIV: Celebrity Sports Games – PA118

What could be better than more sports games? Celebrity tie-in sports games!

We dug deep in the archives (and the bargain bins) and found some wonderful and obscure games with celebrity athletes representing sports from snooker to soccer (or football for those outside the US).

Whether you like sports or not, we hope you enjoy this varied selection of tunes!

Show notes and track list

Basted – PA117

Basted (バステッド) is a Japanese exclusive PC-Engine CD game released in 1994 developed and published by NEC Avenue.

The game is a very lightweight action RPG. Over the course of its rather short 3 hour playtime, you’ll see over 30 minutes of beautiful (and sometimes risque) cutscenes from AIC Spirits with the voice acting and music handled by 81 Produce.

The game uses redbook audio almost exclusively so prepare for CD audio spanning a wide range of genres from rock, dance, to honky tonk and beyond. We hope you enjoy the show and the various tracks Basted has to offer.

Show notes and track list

Gyruss – PA116

Inspired by our talk at the Library of Congress, we have a shorter show covering the music of Gyruss over about 25 years of releases.

Gyruss was originally developed by Konami with ports developed and published by many companies over its history. We even find the game showing up in a few unexpected places.

The original theme is based on J.S. Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor which is a fairly well known organ piece in the classical repertoire. You’ll hear a few different takes on the Bach piece as well as a few new compositions. We hope you enjoy the show!

Show notes and track list

Quartet with Norm – PA115

Today we’re joined by long time listener and friend to the show Norm as we cover the classic soundtrack of Quartet.

Originally developed and published by Sega in 1986, Quartet is a futuristic 4-player arcade platformer with elements borrowed from Gauntlet. Quartet only saw one major wave of releases in arcades and home consoles plus a Sega Ages rerelease, but it maintains a dedicated fanbase and the music composed by Katsuhiro Hayashi plays a big role.

Katsuhiro Hayashi, a.k.a. “Funky K.H” is a composer and former S.S.T. Band keyboardist with some impressive credits. In addition to Quartet, he worked on Super Hang-On, SDI, and Galaxy Force I/II in arcades, and many other console games over the years. Since 2005 he left the conventional games business to work mostly on pachinko games but his music has left a lasting impact.

Join us as we listen to the Arcade and Sega Master System versions of Quartet along with a few brief departures.

Show notes and track list

PA Music Disk Vol. 4 – PA114

After a long break we’re back with another Music Disk volume for more FM synth.

This episode’s music comes from a disk titled Imagical Musion Depot Vol. 3 by the group Active Gamers, led by NT-3 for the PC-8801. The disk was released in 1996 and uses PMD ver3.9 (by KAJA). Get ready for another round of mostly originals from a slew of different musicians in a range of styles.

Show notes and track list

Rackets & Rivals – PA113

rackets & rivals NES PAL Nintendo pixelated audioAfter the Library of Congress we’re kicking off a new short episode format and making a return to the wellspring of great VGM with another sports title. This time we’re listening to the music of tennis game Rackets & Rivals released on the NES in 1993 only in… Europe?

Developed and published by Konami or more accurately their European subsidiary Palcom, Rackets & Rivals is an unremarkable late-era NES game with a brief but excellent soundtrack worthy of some attention. The range of Konami technical tricks is on full display here.

Just after recording, Bryan confirmed with Hiroshi Takeyasu (of Bemani fame) that he did indeed compose 2 songs and create sound effects for the game. Although he couldn’t recall which two tracks, stylistically Match Results and the Unused track sound most similar so that’s our best guess. The other suspected composer Tomoya Tomita also responded to Bryan with a confident “no”, so the second composer of the game remains a minor mystery. Enjoy!

Show notes and track list