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Saturday, April 8, 2017

Song of the Week! 8 April 2017

A couple of Namco Original tunes are on our spotlight today! Both of them were also created for tournament means, too.

 Choco Chiptune. Ancraft
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 Taiko 0 W, Taiko 3DS 3, Taiko +

Starting up, we have one of the winning tracks from the latest Taiko-related CreoFUGA song-making context, with the semi-instrumental Choco Chiptune. The track mashes 8-bit sound bits with some piano accompaniment and voice samples to give out more of a melodic feel with different rhythms rather than a pure chiptune feel, an aspect that was also noted by the Taiko Team judge who commented the winning track (Yuji Masubuchi). According to Ancraft, the song's composer, all vocal cues were taken from the Zero-G commercially-available voice clip library Vocal Factory, whose using rights for Choco Chiptune were negotiated as the 2015 CF contest's winners were declared.

Speaking of Ancraft himself, there's not a huge load of information around the Internet about the person hiding under the nickname thus far; only the profile pages on CreoFUGA, Soundcloud and Nicovideo are up for everyone to find out more works by the artist. We do know one other rhythm gaming-related bit of trivia about Ancraft, though: just like for a_hisa (of Rin fame in Taiko), the composer has managed to win a song submission-driven contest for bemani's pop'n music series, with the track Jack in the Box appearing in the latest installment of the saga, Usagi to Neko to Shounen no Yume (うさぎと猫と少年の夢).

Back to Choco Chiptune, the song's high BPM value is treated with several x0.5 scrolling speed slowdowns and repeated patterns of simple single note/cluster formations, especially on its Oni mode where muscle memory and a good amount of stamina is more valued than fancy drum hit cluster combinations for a masterful play.

 Tenbinza Kyuukou Yoru o Iku (てんびん座急行 夜を行く)
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 Taiko 0 W, Taiko 3DS 3

The 2015 CreoFUGA song-making contest has been the main song contributor to the track repertoire that was involved in the latest major Taiko no Tatsujin arcade tournament, but many minor and interlocking events have added more fuel to the fire with original tracks! One of these has been the Taikai mini-tourney in early 2016, which has seen the debut of three new Namco Original tracks.

The first song of this trio has been Tenbinza Kyuukou Yoru o Iku (lit. 'Libra Express Night to Go'), which was composed/performed and sung by Taku Inoue (井上拓), a NAMCO SOUNDS composer since the early 2010s and current sound director for Synchronica, Bandai Namco's 2nd arcade music game series. The announcement of the song's existence was made the the very same Taku Inoue, who was invited during 2015's final livestream session. For that occasion, he even performed the song live with Yuji Masubuchi (video), weeks in advance of its actual playable debut!

Taku Inoue's Namco Original debut is marked with a 8-star Oni mode that plays more on the concept of following the song's drums accompaniment rather than stuffing it with note-heavy sequences alone! For that reason, it's advisable to get used to the musicality of the song's chart before tackling it just to risk missing notes due to the not-Go-Go Time sections' irregular pattern formations.

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