Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Great Video Game Music - Frost Man - Mega Man 8

Capcom's Mega Man series is one of the most well known franchises in the history of video games. Even though at the time of this writing in 2016 the "blue bomber" has been sadly forgotten by the company that created it, the series is still notable for its longevity, difficulty, and its music. The first 6 Mega Man games were all released for the NES and are lauded for their 8-bit musical compositions. Mega Man 2 in particular is often seen as the musical highlight of the franchise, sporting some incredibly memorable tunes to compliment its stellar gameplay and design.

The Super Nintendo would be home to the first three games in the Mega Man X franchise; a spin-off that takes place far into the future of that universe and is seen as an edgier and more complex series of games. The SNES also played host to Mega Man 7, a continuation of the classic series but done in 16-bit as opposed to 18-bit style.

Then came Mega Man 8 on the PlayStation. The quality of the game is debated amongst fans, but the increase in technology and games being on discs instead of cartridges led to a number of improvements; one of which is the music.

This is the theme to Frost Man's stage. The keyboards give the track a kind of wintery feel, but when combined with the electronic percussion, trumpet and slap bass, combine to make an acid jazz style of sound. The bass really is the star of the show. Seriously, the groove it lays down is not just good by video game standards, it's good by jazz standards too. The way it relentlessly thumps along is fascinating to listen to in its intricacies. 

The upgrade to the PlayStation may not have helped Mega Man in terms of playability, but the quality of the music received a very strong shot in the arm. Even if you prefer the older chip-tunes, it's hard to deny how much this song does so well. 

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