Apr 152015


Techie tunes from two late-blooming Genesis hits. A little bit of dance with a dash of chillaxin grooviness.

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00:00 – Title Screen (Vectorman)

05:23 – Terraport (Vectorman)

06:37 – Options Screen (Vectorman)

09:03 – Rock n Roller (Vectorman)

21:41 – Tidal Surge (Vectorman)

23:50 – Metalhead (Vectorman)

32:00 – Cave 2 (Vectorman 2)

34:48 – Tornado (Vectorman 2)

37:49 – Lava River (Vectorman 2)

44:40 – Overflow (Beatdrop via OverClocked ReMix)

  17 Responses to “VGMpire 91 – Vectorman Vibe”

  1. Yes! Vectorman! This was an episode I was always wishing for in the back of my head. Keep up the great work.

  2. Well done, Brett!
    I’m glad you picked this series because I’ve never played it outside of a Toys R Us. The music was pretty decent, thankfully steering clear of the horrible electric razor fart guitars that plagued most American(and some Japanese) Genesis games toward the end of its life cycle. Please feel free to call a spade a spade: The guitar mimicry on the Genesis is a borderline crime.

    The music in Vectorman, as Chris mentioned, is almost the exact opposite. By the way, am I the only one who noticed there wasn’t ONE snare drum in the entire soundtrack? I think that’s why the game sounds a lot more chill than a standard techno track.

    Glad you brought up Gunstar Heroes, and I think the boss to which you guys referred was Running Man, who appeared quite late in the game(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7r3N0vgeaY About 8 minutes in). The stage 1 midboss that Dave mentioned was Bravoo Man, who wasn’t spheres but 3D light-source shaded(!) cubes. Incidentally, the technology used for those bosses is pretty the same as was used in Space Harrier II, just more clever. I think the reason programmers used balls so much for these particle-based characters is because a sphere looks the same no matter which angle it’s viewed at. They don’t have to re-draw objects from different angles that way. And I can’t believe you guys made it through that line of conversation without a testicle joke, especially Antista. Simply amazing.

    I’m glad you mentioned both Service Games(which I just finished) and Console Wars(which I’m reading now). Two very good books, although Service Games is a SLOG at times due to the way each chapter covers half the info of the previous chapter. Almost have to be a Sega fan to make it through that one. Console Wars, on the other hand, is not only well-researched, but excellently written and paced. They do a great job of painting an uncolored picture about both Sega and Nintendo and show what made them great, as well as what made them frustrating.

    Lastly, keep up the good work. You mentioned Phantasy Star and Streets of Rage as titles that know how to do Genesis sound; add Technosoft to the mix. Brelston, I’ll make you a deal: You tell me you want to do a Technosoft episode, and I’ll do the legwork for you, from track suggestions to researching info about the company and the individual titles. I’m not familiar with all their stuff but to me, their music for the Genesis was what Sunsoft’s music was to the NES.

  3. Thanks and great episode as usual. I love that you’re shining light on the Mega Drive’s soundtracks.
    I’d love to see a Mega Drive Medley sequel episode. Here are some lesser known gems.

    Light Crusader – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CTCWUJkbntg

    Verytex – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHhsIfdroCY

    Star Cruiser – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1natmNg4jSU

    U.N. Squadron – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wouXjUY6eTc

    Master of Monsters – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uH-Q5Yc2Jfk

    Rocket Knight Adventures – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=adIByyOs2Ro

    -and not Mega Drive but Spindizzy II, please do a Spindizzy episode!

    • We did a whole Rocket Knight ep ya know!

      But thanks for the suggestions – really digging Master of Monsters

    • Not to nitpick but, U.N. Squadron was never on the Mega Drive.

      I’ll post a review.as soon as I get a chance to listen to the episode.

  4. I’m surprised there wasn’t a Mortal Kombat episode this week given MKX 😛

    Vectorman was always “that Genesis game” I’d always see in demo form at Toys ‘R Us and Sears whenever I went as a kid. Pretty sure it was the first Genesis game I ever played. Trying to get into it with Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection on PS3 was kind of an exercise in frustration thanks to the difficulty. Good to know the music’s good at least. Also very cool to hear about all that info from older interviews with the composer.

    I feel like a lot of Genesis music naysayers should really listen to Hitoshi Sakimoto and Masaharu Iwata’s music on the system, particularly Gauntlet IV. The stuff they were able to pull off with Sakimoto’s custom Genesis/Megadrive sound driver really made it sound so much more amazing. Hope to see the G4 music in a future VGMpire 😛 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BOagvSmosBg

    • Patrick, I very nearly posted the SAME comments about Sakimoto and Iwata. Sakimoto usually just handled the sound design, although he contributed on a fair number of tracks. The sound drivers he created for the Mega Drive are notable because they’re rock solid. A lot of Mega Drive/Genesis games sound like they’re barely holding together at the seams, like when the music gets intense, the sampler can’t keep up and the sync gets off. Sakimoto’s tracks never sound like that; they’re always full and strong and solid. Plus the music those two do is just bonk. There’s a fishing game they did(I can’t remember right now what it was) that was also fab.

  5. Kinda sad that the best song of the episode for me was the OCRemix one.

    For Henry: for your next Persona/SMT episode make sure to have some music from SMT IV or the Devil Survivor games. Particularly the songs
    Demon of Darkness from Devil Survivor, which just screams BOSS FIGHT
    Infernal Underground Tokyo from SMT IV, which sure sounds like what a demon would listen too

  6. Crazy! This morning I just finished listening to 45, the Streets of Rage episode, and there’s a part where Grimm mentions Vectorman and how you guys should do an episode on it.

  7. I rented Vectorman late in the Genesis’s life, based on the hype and how cool it looked. I think I only got like 2 levels in playing it once as a five day rental. It definitely fit into the Genesis attitude and flash mold that only ever appealed to me in marketing (as always, Kid Chameleon comes to mind).

    I do remember the music feeling very foreign to me. It was probably some of the first techno, quasi-rave music this 14 year old Michigan kid was exposed to. That was the end of it, though. I’m with Chris on this one. It lacks that lasting catchiness of so many other 16 bit soundtracks.

  8. At long last, we finally get a VGMpire about Vectorman. This was my favorite game for the Genesis, and a huge part of that was the music. The pulsing, pounding techno beats really get your blood flowing. And that’s good, because you’ll need that adrenaline to beat this game. The weirdest part of listening to this was hearing the music without all the weird-ass sound effects. You were right about that, Brett, this game had some weird ones. Anyway, excellent episode. I think I’ll dig out my copy of Sonic’s ultimate Genesis collection and play around with my balls. I mean Vectorman’s balls. The game’s balls. The game is about balls.

  9. […] Techie tunes from two late-blooming Genesis hits. A little bit of dance with a dash of chillaxin grooviness. LISTEN NOW […]

  10. I just want to chirp in here that I love this podcast. I just found it a couple weeks ago and am loving going through the archive of episodes, now I am going to go on a little nerd rant due to the nostalgia I am having! I just listen to your early episode on the Ys’s series. You guys were talking about recording the game audio out of ps1 games into a stereo and having to find a quite place in the level to do so.

    When I was younger and the emulation scene was starting up I would rip soundtracks out of nes and snes roms through the emulator sound out channels and man was I stoked, I was getting crystal clear quality rips without even having to play the game (the emulator I used had an option to just listen to the sound track to track) and recording it to a tape deck, then make custom artwork for the tapes and place the proudly on my shelf of copied tapes of OST;s and live metal bootlegs.

    I fist discovered YS on the PC fan translation of part one and two for windows xp. I had wanted to play one of these for years (no one in my town had a tg-16 hah) but was never able to. I had listed to the soundtracks a bunch before I played it so it was mind blowing to get the full on experience and now I have played nearly every one with the help of fan translations etc.. I was obsessed with Crystalis as a kid and think this is why Ys was a nice fit. I really liked the Crystalis OST back then and still do, you guys ever get into that one?

    Anyways, just a big dork out post for me but I am glad that there are other people out there who appreciate and can have fun with all this kick ass video game tunes. Keep it up dudes!

    • …. and I wish there was an edit option, lots of typos up there, whops!

    • Glad you found VGMpire! The other VGM podcast of note(in my opinion) is Legacy Music Hour, which usually focuses more on themes. More dorky, more music, but also good. But VGMpire! It’s a great show. Always entertaining, always well-researched, always good or great tunes.

      Speaking of Y’s, I cut my teeth on Y’s the Vanished Omens for the Sega Master System, which had great music and graphics for an 8-bit title. Got me interested in RPG’s and action adventure titles from then to now.

  11. This soundtrack was terrible. The Genesis had such a distinct, metallic sound, but a handful of artists could really pull it off well.

    It’s a shame too, because the visual for this game were fantastic, especially when you consider that it was all done in Assembly! I think it was a game that was too little, too late in the lifespan of the Genesis.

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