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Saturday, November 3, 2018

Song of the Week! 3 November 2018

The first official Western Taiko game (double!) release in ages demands yet another double feature! Enjoy a couple of tracks as representatives of the freshly-localized Session de Dodon ga Don/Drum Session and Nintendo Switch Version/Drum 'n' Fun.

 Ai to Jouzai no Mori (愛と浄罪の森)
Allx5 (218)x7 (354)x8 (502)x10 (832)
 Taiko 0 B, Taiko PS4

As our recent Western launch reportage goes by, some of the downloadable content from both games are being localized as well! This is especially reassuring for long-time Taiko players with a PS4 at hand, as Session de Dodon ga Don has got its audience used to a Namco Original-oriented DLC direction with both really new/recent tracks as well as high-difficulty offenders. Sometimes, these two branches will merge as well, and such is the case of Ai to Jouzai no Mori (lit. 'Forest of Love and Purification'), one of the latest original creation from the recurring freelance artist Hisui (翡翠).

Unlike most of the former works being the labor of Hisui alone, the creation of this Namco Original has gathered around quite an ensemble of different artists for the singing chorus units, rivaling the contributors number of one certain Mekadon-oriented song, of which we talked about years ago. With Hisui as the composer and Yuuko Ueda (上田ゆう子) as the lyricist, seven different people have lent their voice for the coral accompaniment of the song... Hisui himself included! The other six people are Asahi Morikawa (森川あさひ), Asuka Tsukada (塚田明日加), taka-c, Takuya Kotegawa (小手川拓也), Yayoi Kano (叶弥生) and Daiki Morooka (諸岡大貴). With the exceptions of Takuya Kotegawa and Hisui, all singers are affiliated to the voice-casting talent agency Brush-up One (Twitter page), as the agency website's contracted talents section can testify.

Ai to Jouzai no Mori is one of the PS4 DLC picks that had a fresh arcade debut first, as the song was featured in one of Blue Version's seasonal Rewards Shop outlets. One of the drumroll-less 10* songs with no 1/24 notechart trickery to boot, almost the entire chart is played with a scrolling speed reduction, putting more of an emphasis on the readability of its fearsome note patterns, juggling between 1/16 and 1/12 tempos the most.

Allx4 (134)x6 (191)x7 (333)x9 (657)
 Taiko 0 G, Taiko Switch

Namco-spawn Game Music had an odd track record on Nintendo Taiko games for the most part, premiering the debut of songs from games that are either decades-old or not being ported on Nintendo systems at all. With one of the Nintendo Switch debut title's picks, we definitely have an exception to confirm such rule!

The title itself already gives away the game from where this song comes from: Pac-Man Championship Edition 2, originally simu-launched on PS4/xBox One/Steam on September 15th, 2016 and ported to the Nintendo Switch a couple years later, on February 22nd, 2018. A sequel to the original Championship Edition game, the game offers to the players a more fast-paced way to experience the gameplay spirit of the Pac-Man series, guiding the yellow pizza-shaped titular character to a series of mazes to collect dots while avoiding a quartet of sneaky ghosts. Inherited from the first CE game are the maze-expanding mechanics after eating partial sets of dots, as well as a method to group sleeping ghosts for greater hi-score chances, while adding to the mix an 'Angry Ghost' mechanic and an Adventure mode. Co-op play is also allowed for the game's Nintendo Switch version!

Plugging the game to Taiko fans with one of its song, the PAC TOY-BOX background music piece was ported to Drum 'n' Fun, bringing this creation from the ex-Namco musician Taku Inoue to yet another audience share. The notechart analogies to the Ridge Racer Oni mode(s) with some 1/24 cluster trickery do write for themselves, really!

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