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Saturday, June 18, 2016

Song of the Week! 18 June 2016

Sometimes, the theme that dictates our weekly song features is selected by unconscious mind links that make them sound really random in comparison to our standard themes...

This is one of those weeks. Let me explain...

 The Legend of Zelda (ゼルダの伝説)
Allx3 (76)x4 (107)x6 (249)x7 (297)
 Taiko Wii U 1

You see, it's been a while since we started naming the Song of the Week feature through our social media channels with the 'SotW' shortened abbreviation; considering that, it was then quite surprising for us to discover this week that the next title for a well-renowned series that got some Taiko representation could be using a slightly-similar acronym! And so, as the next Legend of Zelda title can be shortened as 'BotW' (for Breath of the Wild), the SotW mind link for me was quite instantaneous to make... and with a great timing too, considering that this Nintendo series has turned 30 years old on February this year!

Published in Japan with the subtitle of 'The Hyrule Adventure', the original The Legend of Zelda was one of the launch games for the Japan-exclusive NES peripheral known as the Family Computer Disk System, both being released on February 21st in 1986. Set in the fantasy land of Hyrule, its human inhabitants have been forced to live inside of caverns to avoid monsters and its main ruler -the princess Zelda- has been kidnapped by Ganon, who is seeking the power of the Gods known as the Triforce. With the artifact being divided in three parts, the young adventurer Link has to search the land for the eight pieces of the Triforce of Courage in order to face Ganon and save Zelda. This top-down perspective action-adventure title if often credited one of the inspiring pioneers of the RPG genre, due to the sense of exploration given by the game.

With the Famicom Disk System being a Japan exclusive, the game was released worldwide for the NES with an internal battery for game saving means (a first in console gaming), managing to become the system's first game to sell over a million copies in the world. Counting over 6.5 million sales under its belt, the first Zelda title has inspired a slew of sequels for many of Nintendo's later platforms, as well as 'true-to-form' different versions to the NES title. While the first in-title sequel to the cold classic was Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link, limited versions of the first title could be found for the Famicom's Japan-exclusive services, such as Myojo Foods's Zelda no Densetsu: Teikyō Charumera (ゼルダの伝説 提供 チャルメラ), which was made to advertise the company's charumera noodles, and the two Satellaview remakes of the original Zelda title for Super Nintendo: the episodic BS The Legend of Zelda (BS ゼルダの伝説) and its MAP 2 sequel, both of which could be downloaded with the aforementioned Super Nintendo feature alongside some audio clues and game hints.

Koji Kondo (近藤浩治) of Super Mario Bros. fame is the music composer for all the versions of the game, with most of the audio cues being reflected in the majority of later titles in the series. Namco caught the Zelda music ball at first with the Japan-exclusive Donkey Konga 3, featuring a medley based on the Famicom Disk System version of the game. Many years later, the medley has made its way to Taiko gaming thanks to a time-limited NES Remix collaboration. The medley starts with the Bootup/Disk Insert jingles that can be heard on the Disk System, with a shorter Famicom DS version of the Legend of Zelda's title screen and the oh-so-familiar Zelda themes from the NES versions, ranging from the overworld, the 'Item Get' jingle and the theme that can be heard by collecting a Triforce piece.

As a tradition with Nintendo music in Namco music gaming, this is a quite short medley, which on Taiko is mostly played under Go-Go Time. It's still quite the challenge to Oni newcomers for practicing different kinds of note spacing with alternating BPMs to handle!


If you're craving for more Game Music action, check back tomorrow! We'll be updating the blog's Song Series Showcases (and the past Ghosts'n Goblins SotW) with all the new additions brought up by the latest Nintendo 3DS title.

Be sure to check back the Taito and Medley song series tomorrow!

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