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By Jonathan Balofsky On 24 Mar, 2017 At 12:59 PM | Categorized As Otaku Music, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No GravatarGame music cover band Moiré Effect has put out a new song that is a Power Ballad version of the Moon Theme from Ducktales on the NES. This song has lyrics as well, and is rather catchy.

 

 

 

Moiré Effect started as a garage rock band in the late ’90s when the guys were in high school. In the last couple years they’ve been revisiting their original songs as well as putting out VGM covers for games including Deus Ex, Chrono Trigger, and Cave Story. You can follow Moiré Effect on Twitter or Facebook.

Thank you to Jayson Napolitano for bringing this to our attention.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 23 Feb, 2017 At 05:19 PM | Categorized As News, NINTENDO, Nintendo Switch, Otaku Music, ROG News, ROG Tech | With 0 Comments

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French outlet Melty reported a few days ago that Switch would support Bluetooth headsets based on an interview conducted with Yoshiaki Koizumi from Nintendo. However, it seems there was a communication error.

Nintendo themselves reached out to Melty and let them know that Bluetooth headsets are NOT compatible with the Switch. However, this doesn’t mean that Switch doesn’t support headsets at all, as wired headsets should be compatible.

Source

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Recently I had the chance to have a discussion with Brian Diamond and Stephen Froeber of the Materia Collective, regarding their upcoming project ZODIAC: Final Fantasy Tactics Remixed. We talked about how the project came about and what was involved. Have a read below.

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JB: This is a very interesting project, how did it come about?

Brian Diamond (BD): Stephen can probably answer this question more fully than me as a life long fan of the Tactics franchise. I came onto the project as an assistant producer a few weeks after it started, to help with organisational grunt work, though I quickly took on more responsibility as the project took shape. Tactics is a very popular game among members of The Materia Collective, with many chomping at the bit to put their musical mark on the world of Ivalice.

Stephen Froeber (SF): Final Fantasy Tactics was actually the second game that I played in the franchise. I was one of the “late bloomers” that caught the FF series starting with VII and the PlayStation era. I later went back and played all the originals.

Tactics was special to me because of how much more mature it was. The storyline was much darker and more serious, and the gameplay itself was more cerebral.What ultimately grabbed me, of course, was the music. It was so atmospheric and really fit the world so well.

When Materia Collective started with the first album covering VII, I knew it was only a matter of time before Tactics had to be done. I was thrilled to be able to produce the album with Brian. 

JB:  How has the response been for the project so far?

SF: We’ve had a lot really positive feedback, to include a nice comment from Yasumi Matsuno himself, which was a huge, unexpected honor! 

BD: The response has been extremely positive, with many praising the size of the album, its eclectic mix of styles and high quality of arrangers remixes. Everyone has a different favorite and I think that’s a testament to the all the talented individuals who poured their hearts into this project. We even had Tactics Creator Yasumi Matsuno retweet and buy a copy of the album.

JB: Was there any special selection of the musicians for the project?

SF: Many of the arrangers are veterans of the Materia Collective’s previous albums, but we always have new people with each project that request to join. We are continually impressed with the quality of work that arrangers put into each piece.

Each arranger has discretion on using their own musicians for their song, and many times, that is how many people end up getting involved long term.  

BD: Not really, the process of the majority of our projects involves our would be arrangers pitching proposals for the tracks they want to remix. We often ask that they pitch multiple tracks in case they don’t get their first preference. As with all soundtracks there are really popular tracks and hidden gems, and sometimes we have 7 proposals for one track. In that situation we might allow 2-3 versions of a track but we give priority to the first to submit and make sure the multiple submissions are stylistically different enough e.g. (a) Dubstep Remix, (b) Solo Piano and (c) Full Orchestral. It’s important for us to try and cover as much of the original soundtrack as possible, so we try and keep the number of repeated tracks to a minimum.

JB: What kind of future projects do you anticipate?

SF: We anticipate many future projects. 😉 

If you take a look at our current discography, you can probably take some good guesses as to things that are in the pipeline. 

BD: I can’t go into details yet (mainly because I don’t know myself), but would love to do more Final Fantasy albums, maybe some remix albums of Indie Games, I’m really looking forward to Materia Collectives Kickstarted Hero of Time orchestral album – the art work and vinyl design for it looks gorgeous and the work that Producer Eric Buchholz has done with Legend of Zelda Symphony of the Goddesses is stellar.

JB: What kind of approval process was there for the songs recorded?

SF: We have a pretty wide variety of skillsets and experience levels within the Collective. It’s always a delicate balance between being inclusive, and keeping our quality level consistently high. 

We have periodic check-ins throughout the production process for us to give feedback on demos and mixes. By the time the final tracks were submitted, they were pretty polished. 

BD: Outside of the initial proposal process, we try and get our arrangers to check in periodically with updates on how their tracks are doing, whether they’re having any problems, making sure they submit stuff on time. The most important thing we strive for is making sure that everyone involved give the best that they can give and that they can look back on the project with pride.

JB: There are a lot of tribute albums to video game soundtracks, how will this one stand out?

SF: One thing that makes all of the Materia Collective albums unique is that you really don’t know what you’re going to get from one track to the next. We have such a diverse range of musical influences, and you can hear that front and center in the music…. and yet, in spite of that, the album stays surprisingly unified and consistent. There’s something musically for everyone. 

BD: One thing about Materia releases that I have always enjoyed has been the sheer size of them and eclectic mix of styles – ZODIAC: Final Fantasy Tactics Remixed has 63 tracks and 4 hours long. And that isn’t even the largest one – our Undertale tribute album FALLEN that we released last September was 97 tracks 

JB: Have there been any difficulties in the making of Final Fantasy Tactics remixed?

SF: All large projects have challenges, and this was no exception. Life still happens even when you’re making awesome music. 

We had some artists that had to drop out of the project, as well as some growing pains with project management tools.

We try to take each problem as a point of learning to bring into the next album.

BD: I found it surprising how smoothly it went considering Stephen and I were dealing with 60 odd arrangers and by extension 100+ musicians throughout the process. Sometimes working with musicians can be like herding cats (speaking from past experience) however I’m delighted that we had very few issues on this album and all the musicians and vocalists were wonderful to work with.

JB: What is it about the music of Final Fantasy Tactics that stands out the most to you?

SF: Tactics, more so than the other FF series, was much more focused on atmosphere. There are several ambient, dissonant, haunting tracks all throughout, as well as some large orchestral pieces. 

I initially thought that would make this a challenging album to cover…. but when I started hearing the renditions of each track, I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. It breathes new life into an already amazing soundtrack. Many times, it put a unique spin on a piece that gives it a whole new meaning.

BD: For me it’s the rich and luscious scores of Sakimoto and Iwata, the interweaving themes, the tapestry of storytelling conveyed through their music. My first experience of Sakimotos wonderful composition style was with the music of FFXII – I grew up on Uematsu sans gorgeous arrangements from the mainline Final Fantasy entries of the 90s and early 2000s. I came late to Final Fantasy Tactics playing it more recently on Android devices, but I had heard the soundtrack long before playing the game, and it’s unique style has stayed with my ‘til this day.

JB: Do you have anything you would like to say to the readers of Real Otaku Gamer?

SF: The one thing that I really enjoy about the VGM cover scene is the deep passion for the source material. 

These albums give us a chance to connect with fellow fans of these amazing games, and (hopefully) add something personal to the conversation of how we experienced the music that other people can connect with.

BD: Even though we’ve just released ZODIAC: Final Fantasy Tactics Remixed – Materia Collective has got a lot of cool projects coming out this year; so if you want to keep up with all our goings on – follow Materia Collective on Facebook, Twitter, Spotify and Bandcamp for updates on all our releases and general VGM goodness.

 

JB: Thank you again for doing this.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 10 Nov, 2016 At 01:40 AM | Categorized As News, News, NINTENDO, Otaku Music, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No GravatarMondo released the following tweet

 

Super Castlevania IV had some of the best music in the series as a whole, so this is very welcome. I think I will try and pick this up myself. What about you all?

By Jonathan Balofsky On 27 Sep, 2016 At 09:05 PM | Categorized As News, News, Otaku Music, PC Games, PlayStation, ROG News, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 0 Comments

No GravatarMick Gordon, who composed the music for DOOM 2016 posted this video of the tune Rip and Tear. The video indicated it is part of an official soundtrack, but when that is coming, has not yet been revealed.

See the video Mick posted here

 

 

By Jonathan Balofsky On 15 Jul, 2016 At 09:00 PM | Categorized As News, News, NINTENDO, Otaku Music, ROG News | With 0 Comments

No GravatarNintendo has released footage of the Squid Sisters concert from Japan Expo 2016. Callie and Marie take the crowd through some of their biggest hits and this reinforces my belief that Nintendo needs to make a spinoff rhythm game for the NX starring the Squid Sisters. Check out the footage below.

By otakuman5000 On 7 Mar, 2014 At 07:15 PM | Categorized As Animation, News, Otaku Music, ROG News, Television | With 0 Comments

No GravatarNews came about just a few days ago that Anime Limited has gained the license for the original soundtrack for the popular anime series Attack on Titan. The soundtrack contains 16 tracks, both inserts and background music, from the anime all composed by Hiroyuki Sawano, who has also composed songs for Gundam Unicorn, Guilty Crown and Kill la Kill. Songs include Attack On Titan, The Reluctant Heroes, Call Your Name, Eye-Water, Counter Attack-Mankind, and Rittaikidou.

We can expect a physical CD release later this summer, but as of right now, you can buy and download the entire soundtrack from all of the popular digital music stores, such as iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon.

[Source: Anime News Network]

 

Listening to Senbonzakura with Miku

No GravatarHardcore Hatsune Miku fanboys and fangirls feel loneliness no more because the great and benevolent makers of… well essentially a waifu app with Miku, released a translation of their popular game unto the English market. But before spending your hard earned $3.99 on this app you must be asking yourselves is it any good?

Tutorial begining screen

Essentially the app claims it will allow you to “enjoy music more with Miku” and I say they’ve delivered pretty well on that promise. This is not a gaming app and has limited interactivity, so I only recommend this to hardcore Vocaloid fans. I shall explain it in greater detail after the pretty pictures.

End of tutorial screen

Forever and ever and ever…..

Listening to Senbonzakura with Miku

Just listening to Senbonzakura while Miku jams along makes this app worth every penny.

Essentially this is another type of music player. You pick what songs you want to listen to and when you press play you can get to listen to your favorite songs with Miku. Now let’s make it clear she doesn’t dance or sing along, she moves to the rhythm with some head bopping and other stuff to break the routine. The element that makes this app more than just a buddy to listen to music with is the interaction element.

You interact with Miku by gaining points you get from listening to music with her. When you spend a point you can ask her a question, get asked a question, and if you’re lucky get a high five. What’s truly a shame is some of the questions are repeated over and over again to the point you answer or ask other stuff out of boredom, she’s lucky all her reactions are cute.

Interesting answers

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The Engrish isn’t strong with this translation, but it is present. The game is also riddled with glitches I randomly happen to stumble upon and definitely needs some fixing here and there. My main pet peeve is the bar with the time and battery life is present on top unlike other apps, and the game has a clock so it isn’t like I need it.

Item to collect: smartphone

At least she’s rich enough to get me nice things ^_^

Glitch

The best part of this game though is the items she gives you when you fill the interaction bubble. It’s always interesting to see what the latest item she gave me is and I’m looking forward to getting every single one of them.

It’s a nice simple app to keep you company. Play too long with it and you will be bored, so just use it to fill in those calm moments when you listen to music to add flavor to your daily routine. If you need some more fanservice, there are 3 additional outfit and head sets, although I don’t think they’re worth their cost ($3.99 same as the game). You can get the game on iTunes now!

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*Volunteer Positions* While evaluating the state of the Gaming Journalism scene, I noticed that we at Real Otaku Gamer has a unique approach when covering geek/otaku culture. As the site gets restructured and we go into our 3rd year, we are looking to create opportunities that will help the site become more robust and varied with coverage. Real Otaku Gamer has a global vision, we accept writers from all over the world.

These new job positions are going to help Real Otaku Gamer become more organized and develop a bigger community so we can grow as a brand. These positions are volunteer only as we are a small site. As we grow so will the sponsors and hopefully revenue.

IF HAVE ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT THE POSITIONS, Email us at feedback@realotakugamer.com

These New Positions are as follows:

1. Community Manager: You will be taking care of the daily running of the site. You will work along side the Editor in Chief and other Admins on the site with promoting the site and helping build a brand. You must have good communication skills.

2.Marketing and PR: You will be responsible for all Public Relations with companies and the community. You must have good communication skills and be able to relate to people of a number of levels. You will also run contests and giveaways.

3.Managing Editor: You will work closely with all staff to make sure the posts we produce, are up to our standards.

4.Social Media Manager: You will be in charge of growing our social networking presence. You will be working close to the senior staff.

5. Assistant to Editor in Chief: You will assist the E.I.C. in the daily running of the site.

6.Advertising and Promotion: contact us for more details.

7.Art Director: contact us for more details.

8.Podcast Producer/Editor: contact us for more details.

9.Video Producer/Editor :contact us for more details.

Now, the next few positions are for the Real Otaku Gamer Specialists. These positions are dedicated for people who want to cover a specific genre/category. This is where your inner Otaku can really shine.

1. PC

2. Mobile/Tablet

3. Tech

4. Anime

5. Manga

6. Comics

7. Nintendo

8. Sony

9. Microsoft

10. Movies/Television

11. Asian Cinema

12.Indie Games

13.Toys/models and Merchandise

14.Convention Coverage

15.Cosplay and Cosplay Culture

To apply for these positions, you must first submit a writing sample and once the sample is approved, submit an small essay telling us why we should pick you for the job you are interested in. An essay is not necessary for all positions. Deadline to have the samples submitted is May 20th, 2013. We must have all essays in my May 17th. Send the Essays and Samples to feedback@realotakugamer.com.

If you have any questions about any of the positions and their responsibilities, just email us at feedback@realotakugamer.com or go to the Twitter and Facebook pages. Thanks you for your time.

Andre Tipton

Founder/Editor in Chief

By Inactive or EX ROG Staffer On 10 Mar, 2013 At 07:28 PM | Categorized As Editorials, Featured, Otaku Music | With 1 Comment

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Guitar Hero promo wallpaper

Do you remember Guitar Hero? I sure do. If you’re reading this you probably do too because not a lot of five year old kids visit our website.

Guitar Hero broke new ground as one of the most successful game franchises of the 2000’s. When it came out in 2005 it became an instant hit and went on to release Guitar Hero II and Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock all with astounding sales, earning them $1.7 billion in 2008, the high point of success for the franchise. Then it all went to hell.

Afterwards official continuations to the main Guitar Hero video game that never made as much money as their first three games were released and a huge number of spin offs focusing on specific bands, and very successful ones like The Beatles and Areosmith as well as more obscure ones, came out and flooded the market. The sales kept decreasing until it became obvious this monster that had unleashed itself onto the world was dying and so Activision decided instead of seeing it suffer any longer to pull the plug on the operation and not release any more games.

I was contemplating the absurdity of how this franchise had gone from the video game essential that every household with kids around my age (I was in middle school around the time) was guaranteed to have to an essential bargain bin game. My mind went back to when I was reading this video game review magazine that had a special section on Guitar Hero discussing if it was here to stay or it would go down the tubes. The section claiming it would go on forever claimed Guitar Hero’s success was based on the fact it centered around something timeless, music, and it was a game that anyone of any age could get into. The more cynical side claimed Guitar Hero was only successful because it was the game of the moment and people would eventually get tired of it and move on to the next big thing. Both had valid points that are reasons for the game’s eventual failure, even the one with a positive outlook.

Rhythm matching and music based games have never been popular in America. Most of them are confined to the arcade because it’s pretty novel to perform in public, which ironically is where “Guitar Hero” ended up. Now Guitar Hero as a game work just fine but it never really gives the player much of an incentive to play by themselves. All the characters are pretty stock generic rock star characters, there is no story, and you never get attached to said characters because all they do is perform and voila. Hell, I remember playing as a specific character and then I get a cut scene with some random guy. Talk about laziness. And once they began releasing as many games as they could for the sake of profit the market became stale and there was really nothing new to look forward to.

Then what about the games with well known LEGENDS? That brings me to my second point. A very sad one. Rock had been dead for some time when Guitar Hero came out and even this franchise couldn’t bring it back in style. All in all despite its success it was doomed for failure solely because rock was dying and those who initially bought it would lose interest with all the mainstream garbage coming out as for the kids following them wouldn’t even think to look at it because they wouldn’t recognized the auto tuned talentless synthetic music they’ve grown up with. Which is why they couldn’t register the sheer awesomeness of some of these games.

Now the main reason this game failed is because, well, the average person can’t enjoy it unless they’re with their friends. I remember mostly pulling out the house’s copy of Guitar Hero when friends came over and the main objective of playing alone was to impress them with mad skills once they showed up (I preferred my Nintendo games). It was a great bonding experience. However there’s only so many times kids can do something before getting tired of it. It was something that inexplicably became popular and died out like Pokemon and Yu Gi Oh, and don’t hate me for making that comparison because I know many kids who used to play it are now the kind of people that make you lament the times you live in and you know it too.

Now that doesn’t undermine the importance and greatness of this game but it is a testimony of how the video game industry is vulnerable to sudden changes in consumer tastes. If Guitar Hero had been made as a niche game it probably would’ve survived to this day, but it was made to be larger than life and lucrative, and once it didn’t meet those needs it was abandoned because when it comes to large company the bottom line is profit. Guitar Hero was a great game, and I am thankful I was able to experience it at the peak of its popularity. I can say with confidence it is one of the best music based game of all times and it will always hold a special place in my heart.