image image image image image
The Stanley Parable: A Game About Games
The new hd Collection Standard — Kingdom Hearts hd 1.5 Remix Review
Virtually Unstoppable — Saints Row IV Review
Miami hotline review
Violence, Children and Video Games

 

First I wanted to say sorry I haven’t posted more, with life, school, work, Des­tiny, Shad­ows of Mor­dor, Forza Hori­zon 2, and Super Smash Bros. for the 3DS has taken all of my free time. I will how­ever, try to take the time more often to post, and start­ing with that here are a cou­ple of videos I put together to show some of the goofy things we have been up to in the world of Des­tiny. My thoughts on Des­tiny are split, the story is a inco­her­ent mess, the loot sys­tem is all based on chance, the voice act­ing is hit or miss (mostly misses); but the game play keeps me com­ing back almost every­day. Enjoy the videos and will be back shortly with another post.

 

 

The servers are up, the game is wait­ing in store rooms around the coun­try in antic­i­pa­tion for the mid­night release, and the forums (Bungie.net and oth­ers) are fill­ing with excite­ment. Des­tiny launches at mid­night (though some ter­ri­to­ries already have it due to it being the 9th already, curse you Aussies and Kiwi) and the hype machine has hit max­i­mum over­load. This hybrid MMO/FPS/RPG/Kitchen sink, will be the first non-Halo title to come from Bungie since 2001 title Oni. Bungie fin­ished off their side of the Halo fran­chise with Halo: Reach (released in 2010), pass­ing the Halo torch to 343 Indus­tries. Since the depar­ture of Halo, Bungie has been focused with deliv­er­ing a new IP. I, per­son­ally, have not been this hyped for a game since Halo 3 (coin­ci­den­tally another Bungie title). I played the post E3 Alpha, and then in late July, played the Beta on three dif­fer­ent plat­forms (PS4, PS3, Xbox One), and even though much of the con­tent between those tri­als was the same, I could not be more hyped for this game. If you have not yet caught the Des­tiny bug, then I have sev­eral pieces of media, that will try its hard­est to entice you.

 

First up is three tracks from the beta, that I am more than cer­tain are in the final game. Just a note an offi­cial sound­track has not been released yet, but I am hop­ing that will change very shortly, since the sound­track is eas­ily becom­ing my favorite of the year. The sound­track was com­posed by Bungie’s res­i­dent crafts­men, Mar­tin O’Donnel (who unfor­tu­nately is no longer with Bungie) Michael Sal­va­tori, and spe­cial guest Sir Paul McCart­ney. The sound­track is robust, dynamic, and full of con­trast. Tak­ing the tribal drums, epic cho­ruses, rock, and elec­tronic ele­ments from Halo; they have crafted some­thing that feels fresh yet famil­iar. Below are three of my favorite tracks from the beta, I had a list of them to choose from, but these three stand above the crowd. Enjoy!

 

1. The Last Array

2. Deac­ti­vat­ing the Mesh

3. Sepiks Prime

 

 

 

Last, but not least, are two trail­ers. The first is the live action trailer that was directed by the helm of Tron Legacy, Joseph Kosin­ski. The trailer is all fun and fluff, try­ing to get the gen­eral pub­lic inter­ested and it does a fair job. The sec­ond trailer is the Game­play Launch trailer and does a much bet­ter job of hyp­ing the game. Enjoy!

 


 

 

For any­one that played the Alpha this is for you.….

 

 

I can’t wait to see every­one starside!

 

Over the years on this site, I have pub­lished sev­eral arti­cles fea­tur­ing the mind blow­ing remixes that stem from Over­Clocked Remix. The Video Game Remix­ing com­mu­nity has sup­ported user cre­ated remixes and video game sound­tracks as art for well over a decade. Over­Clocked is cur­rently hold­ing their yearly fundraiser on Patreon, a site that helps artist bring their dreams to real­ity, think Kick­starter but monthly dona­tions instead of one lump sum. OC Remix has been tak­ing Patreon dona­tions since June, so this news maybe a lit­tle old to some, but I just started donat­ing last month, and I finally received my first month dona­tion rewards; so I wanted to wait and judge my expe­ri­ence. There are tier dona­tions for your choosing:

$1 + nets you — “Gain access to our Patreon news feed with exclu­sive news updates and sneak peeks on upcom­ing albums, includ­ing works-in-progress and trailers!!”

$5 + nets you - “Not only do you get the exclu­sive patron updates, you also score a promo code for a select FREE dig­i­tal album from Over­Clocked Records EVERY MONTH!”

$100 + nets you — “OFFICIAL SPONSOR STATUS — You or your orga­ni­za­tion listed as an OFFICIAL SPONSOR on http://ocremix.org, all our mailouts, press releases, etc.

ASK US ANYTHING — Pri­or­i­tized Q&A responses, includ­ing dis­cus­sion of any top­ics you’re inter­ested on OCR Talk­back!
PRIZES — You’re entered in our monthly ran­dom draw­ing for super awe­some swag! A win­ner is (could be) you!”

 

I started with some­thing sim­ple and afford­able, I donate $6 every month, and I am more than happy to give more in the future if my cir­cum­stances change. It was incred­i­bly easy to sign up with Patreon and have them take the monthly $6. I just received my first email yes­ter­day with my first month of being a patron, and it was filled with sev­eral pre­views of upcom­ing remixes that have yet to be posted to Over­Clocked Remix, and my free album code. The free albums are cho­sen by Over­Clocked Records, since the artist they pro­mote and sign are invited to label, I have no qualms with the selec­tion. I have been fol­low­ing Over­Clocked Remix since the early 2000’s and have amassed a vast library of their remixes and albums, and I am very happy to give back. As a pro­moter of the arts, and a strong pro­moter of the artis­tic merit in video games, I am very happy to be a spon­sor of such a cre­ative com­mu­nity that is full of tal­ent. If you would like to donate to Over­Clocked Remix and help pro­mote video game music, just click this link to Patreon.

 

If you are still unsure if you want to donate, here are a few of my recent favorites from Over­Clocked Remix. I have an addic­tion to the elec­tronic dance mixes that stem from the site, but there is remixes fea­tur­ing vastly dif­fer­ent styles and gen­res. Enjoy my most recent picks!

 

 

Track 1 — “Streets of Rave” — by Amphibi­ous — from Streets of Rage (Sega Genesis)

Track 2 — “Mys­ti­cal Mist” — by RJ Remixes — from Final Fan­tasy Mys­tic Quest (Super Nintendo)

Track 3 — “Courage ~ Fail­ure ~ Rose­bud” — by Drag­o­nAvenger and OA — fea­tured on the album Final Fan­tasy VI: Bal­ance and Ruin

Track 4 — “Let’s upset a Troid” — by AngleCity­Out­law and timaeus222 — from Metroid Prime (Nin­tendo GameCube)

 

Image Source: Battle.net

It only seemed like yes­ter­day that War­lords of Draenor was revealed at Bliz­zCon 2013 and now we have a launch date for this new expan­sion which was announced at gamescom 2014 in Cologne, the world’s largest games con­ven­tion. Get ready because the new expan­sion will be avail­able to play as of Novem­ber 13 2014 with a new level cap of 100; new tal­ents, dun­geons and raids; flex­i­ble scal­ing for raids and much more. If you are at gamescom this week, be sure to stop by the biggest Bliz­zard booth to date in Hall 7.1 (B051) and check out Blizzard’s lat­est offer­ings: War­lords of Draenor and Heroes of the Storm on PC, Hearth­stone on PC and iPad, and Dia­blo III: Ulti­mate Evil Edi­tion on PS4.

On Thurs­day at gamescom Bliz­zard unveiled both the War­lords of Draenor open­ing cin­e­matic and the first instal­ment of a new ani­mated lore mini-series, Lords of War, in a live-stream event. I know how impres­sive Blizzard’s cin­e­mat­ics are on the big screen, so if I’m feel­ing the awe­some power of the Draenor sto­ry­line here in the UK, the atmos­phere would have been elec­tric at the Koel­n­messe on Thurs­day — check out both of these below. Lore buffs can also get their teeth into the new lore mini-series over the weeks ahead at www.worldofwarcraft.com where Bliz­zard will release more episodes fol­low­ing ‘Lords of War: Part 1 — Kar­gath Blade­fist’, per­haps gen­er­at­ing more ques­tions than answers, but a must see for War­craft fans.

Don’t for­get that you can pre-order War­lords of Draenor now to pre­pare for the Novem­ber 13 launch, with that level 90 boost to get you right into the heart of the action. And if you upgrade to the Dig­i­tal Deluxe edi­tion and enhance your adven­tures in Draenor with epic in-game items includ­ing the Dread Raven mount, Star­Craft II por­traits of Grom­mash Hellscream and Black­hand and a Dia­blo III War­song Pennant.

Also in the news, Bliz­zard CM, Kaivax, reveals that “over the next few weeks, we’ll be test­ing a pre-expansion patch that will bring play­ers to the brink of great peril, as the Iron Horde begins to aggres­sively gain a foothold on Aze­roth. As part of this patch, play­ers will encounter fierce new oppo­nents and get their first chance to expe­ri­ence a num­ber of updates we’re mak­ing to the game. In addi­tion to changes to the skills and abil­i­ties for every class, this patch will intro­duce brand new fea­tures such as 20-player Mythic-difficulty Siege of Orgrim­mar, as well as sys­tems adjust­ments includ­ing stat squish and dimin­ish­ing returns on crowd con­trol”. Be pre­pared to see an advance party of Orcs com­ing through the Dark Por­tal and mak­ing their way to Black­rock Moun­tain. For a short time there will be a spe­cially re-vamped five-player ver­sion of Upper Black­rock Spire sets the stage for the com­ing coun­ter­strike against the Iron Horde.

For the Horde or Alliance, it’s time for our forces to unite and push back the Iron Horde before Aze­roth falls.

Archive War­lords of Draenor sto­ries:

Bliz­zCon 2013: War­lords of Draenor Revealed
Pre-Purchase War­lords of Draenor Now and get a Level 90 Char­ac­ter Boost
WoW Lore Series: Draenor


Login



TGB Twitter

 

As the eighth gen­er­a­tion of con­soles are still rel­a­tively new, new games are hard to come by, and devel­op­ment can be delayed while learn­ing the ropes for these con­soles. As games that are next gen spe­cific like Bat­man: Arkham Knight are see­ing delays, we are see­ing a return of pre­vi­ous gen games that pushed the older hard­ware to their break­ing lim­its. This past Jan­u­ary we saw the re-release of Tomb Raider in the Defin­i­tive Edi­tion for PlaySta­tion 4 and Xbox One. At the end of this month we will see the re-release of The Last of Us in the Remas­tered Edi­tion for the PS4, and at some point this year Grand Theft Auto 5 will jump to the new hard­ware as well. While some may scream that this is sim­ply a money grab from com­pa­nies, I see this as an oppor­tu­nity for peo­ple to play gems that could have taken visual, per­for­mance, or even game­play hits from the aging sev­enth gen hard­ware. I pur­chased Tomb Raider: Defin­i­tive Edi­tion for the PS4 recently and I am sur­prised over how good the game looks and run on the fresh hard­ware. I still have my orig­i­nal 360 copy and that was by no means an ugly game, but their is a stark visual and per­for­mance con­trast. This maybe the con­tin­u­ing trend of HD releases we received dur­ing the last gen, which I was well on board with. Play­ing the game the past cou­ple of days has also given me a new respect for Jason Graves incred­i­ble score. Graves is also known for scor­ing the Dead Space fran­chise, Mur­dered: Soul Sus­pect, and Alpha Pro­to­col. Tomb Raider’s sound­track may have been some­thing I missed in the past ( with the amount of games I play and sound­tracks I lis­ten to, some­thing just get lost), but I am cor­rect­ing that today with a look at its fan­tas­tic score.

 

Secret of the Island Com­plete — Jason Graves — A very per­cus­sion heavy piece, laid with early Japanese/tribal feel; Secret of the Island is a great rep­re­sen­ta­tion of Yamatai, the island in which Tomb Raider takes place. When the strings enter you can feel the sense of dan­ger; the mys­te­ri­ous Storm Guard; the Sun Queen, Himiko; and the deranged cultist led by Math­ias. The per­cus­sion makes this piece, enjoy

 

SOS Tower Final In-game (unre­leased) — Jason Graves — This track was not on the offi­cial sound­track, but thanks to Sound­Cloud and Graves, we get to lis­ten to what is one of the more hap­pier moments in the game. The part of the game where this piece takes place is a huge step for Lara. Still shaky about her sur­round­ings, she is less than con­fi­dent to climb the dilap­i­dated radio tower. She does, and proves to her­self that she can do this, she can become the char­ac­ter we know. The sight from atop the tower is beau­ti­ful, and this piece cap­tures that won­der­ing beauty.

 

A Sur­vivor is Born — Jason Graves — The main theme from Tomb Raider, is sweep­ing, beau­ti­ful piece of pro­duc­tion. Lara’s theme that starts around the (1:25) mark is epic, encas­ing all that Lara has been through on Yamatai and becom­ing the strong pro­tag­o­nist she is meant to be. At the (2:02) mark, the Lara theme is played again but by a solo piano. I love how in the piece there is the same cen­tral theme, the same notes even, played three dif­fer­ent ways, at dif­fer­ent tem­pos; but yet it all fits together so per­fectly. I hope you Enjoy!

 

 

Nor­mally I only post a Gam­ing in Stereo once a week but this track from Over­Clocked Remix has been on repeat since yes­ter­day and I can’t get enough of it. “Tor­na­dosaurus­Rex” by Pro­to­type­R­ap­tor is a remix of Mega Man 9’s Tor­nado Man’s theme. It fea­tures a take on the theme from K-wix “Thun­der Tor­nado” and mashes it with a drum and bass beat sim­i­lar to one of my favorite bands Pen­du­lum. Funny how things come full cir­cle, I only found out about Pen­du­lum via a video game (Motorstorm) and now a video game remix is hark­ing back to Pen­du­lum. Pro­to­type­R­ap­tor did an excel­lent job of just mak­ing a fun track to jam to. It was a real sur­prise to hear lyrics near the end of the track, but I think was a very good fit. Enjoy the track and if you are inter­ested in down­load­ing it, it is free over at Over­Clocked Remix.

 

Assassin’s Creed is one series I never tire of. Some may argue that the yearly titles are start­ing to set in fran­chise fatigue, and to a point, I agree. But unlike other yearly releases, they are given ample devel­op­ment time, they are always try­ing new ideas and mechan­ics (some that stick and oth­ers that only appear once), and the sheer amount of con­tent you get can be stag­ger­ing. To me, they are like tak­ing a walk through a his­tory book, but with fun action doo­dles in the mar­gins. I am cur­rently work­ing through Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, since I play these on the con­soles I waited till I was able to play the PlaySta­tion 4 ver­sion of the title to jump in. For a cross-generation title it is quite stun­ning. Black Flag has been a dream come true since I fin­ished Assassin’s Creed 3. One of the stand­out ele­ments from AC III was the naval bat­tles, which in Black Flag, take the fore­front. As a bonus we received one of the best pirate themed games of all time, some­thing Dis­ney (Pirates of the Caribbean) could never deliver. Jes­per Kyd has helmed most of the series as com­poser. Kyd com­posed the scores for Assassin’s Creed, II, Broth­er­hood, and shared duties on Rev­e­la­tions with Lorne Balfe. Balfe scored parts of rev­e­la­tions and Assassin’s Creed III. I have shared Balfe’s work on AC III on a pre­vi­ous Gam­ing in Stereo. Assassin’s Creed: Lib­er­a­tion, a spin off of AC III that landed on the PS Vita (later con­soles and PC) was scored By Winifred Phillips. Black Flag was scored by Brian Tyler, known for the excel­lent Far Cry 3 sound­track. Though some peo­ple, myself included, were a lit­tle dis­ap­pointed when Kyd didn’t return for Assassin’s Creed III, but I feel it was for the bet­ter. Kyd did a great job dif­fer­en­ti­at­ing the sound of AC and AC II, and I feel fresh com­posers did the same for the fol­low­ing titles. Today we are going to look at those dif­fer­ent sounds with some tracks from Black Flag and Assassin’s Creed II.

 

Jes­per Kyd — Ezio’s Fam­ily — Assassin’s Creed II

This track is sim­ply beau­ti­ful. With the piano, stings, and vocals it feels very fit­ting for renais­sance time period. Since the Assassin’s Creed series is a tale of two time peri­ods, one mod­ern and the other a his­tor­i­cal point in time, the track adds an elec­tric gui­tar ele­ment at the (2:44) mark. Eas­ily one of my favorite tunes from this series, enjoy!

 

Brian Tyler — Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag Main Theme

Brian Tyler cap­tured the escapades of Edward Ken­way per­fectly with this theme. The drums and vio­lins give a sea shanty feel, breath­ing a sense of play­ful­ness in to the tune. The fran­tic drums at the (1:29) are the high­light, but like the game, this feels fun. You can feel in the music that Ken­way likes his “pri­va­teer” lifestyle, though the game does have its more seri­ous moments as well.

 

Bonus Track: Brian Tyler — On the Hori­zon

I am going to let the bonus track speak for itself. There are epic drum sec­tions later in the piece, so lis­ten for those. This does show a more seri­ous side to Black Flag, enjoy!

 

 

 

I know I have been away for some time, plan­ning a wed­ding, even hav­ing a year in advance, can be a dif­fi­cult time. The most dif­fi­cult of these choices has clearly been what song I wanted played while danc­ing with my mother. My mother has been the most influ­en­tial peo­ple in my life, push­ing me to always do bet­ter and always tak­ing an inter­est with the things I love. She is a con­stant reader on the site, always for­ward­ing me arti­cles on the good the gam­ing indus­try does, and when ever she vis­its, takes time to sit and watch me play. My love and appre­ci­a­tion for clas­si­cal music stems from her push­ing me in mid­dle and high school. I started learn­ing music when I was around 9 years old. I played the trum­pet from then till I grad­u­ated high school and I can still read sheet music to this day. There had been sev­eral times I wanted to quit, with the rea­son either being some of my friends or a teacher had annoyed me to the point of no return; but, because of her I stayed. Now, as an adult, I see that it was for the bet­ter and I can now hon­estly say, thank you. When choos­ing the song to dance with my mother, I wanted it to incor­po­rate all of the above. I wanted it to have emo­tion, be gam­ing related, and be an orches­trated piece with no lyrics what so ever. I am not a tra­di­tion­al­ist by any means. I feel there is more emo­tion in music with­out lyrics. Lyrics can be an empty shell, devoid of mean­ing, and can be crafted by any­one. Real com­po­si­tion takes an artist, and I looked to one of my favorite game com­posers, who I deeply respect as an artist and com­poser, Nobuo Uematsu for a com­po­si­tion. I chose “Zanarkand” from the Final Fan­tasy X sound­track. It is the ver­sion taken from Uematsu-sans “Dis­tant Worlds II: More Music from Final Fan­tasy” album, it has a full orches­tra play­ing the piece instead of the MIDI ver­sion from the game (the new HD Remas­ter has much bet­ter audio, Yay!). I wanted to say thank you for your hard work and ded­i­ca­tion to me for the past 29 years. I have grown into a young man that appre­ci­ates the arts and well crafted music because of you. I try to pass that love of music and games with each Gam­ing in Stereo arti­cle I write. Mom, if you read this before you leave, I love you and hope you enjoy the music! To every­one else, I will be depart­ing for a bit, but will return in force, with arti­cles pop­ping up, hope­fully next week. I may have to blog a bit while the misses is out shop­ping on our trip, and don’t think I would go on a hon­ey­moon and leave my handhelds!

 

 

 

I had a dif­fer­ent set of songs picked out for this arti­cle this week, then I came across this song and things changed. Hands down, one of the best remixes, and one of the best songs I have heard in quite a while. “Bub­ble Dragon: A Bub­ble Bob­ble Trib­ute” by 7Bit Hero is a remix of the “Bonus theme” and “Main Theme” from Bub­ble Bob­ble, a game that was released in arcades (one of the many cab­i­nets I have had the plea­sure of play­ing) in 1986. 7Bit Hero, out of Bris­bane, Aus­tralia, com­bines music with gam­ing to cre­ate some­thing com­pletely dif­fer­ent. The orig­i­nal tunes mar­ried well with lyrics, one of the few times this actu­ally works. The result is some­thing that feels like a pop tune from the 80’s that feels fresh. The song is free for down­load either at Over­Clocked Remix or 7Bit Hero’s site. The music video is below and is incred­i­bly well done as it is sad. I love the song so much I have added it to my wed­dings playlist. Enjoy this won­der­ful tune, and if you are inter­ested in more from 7bit Hero, they have a free inter­ac­tive app on Google Play and the Apple App Store as well as their albums “We Eat Loot” and “Hey You! a Flappy Bird Lament” are avail­able for purchase.

 

Our Ventrilo