Journey’s “Any Way You Want It” in SID form

I’m quite comfortable admitting that I love Journey in all their cheesy arena rock spectacularity, so I’m understandably chuffed that someone hooked up two SID chips and brought Journey’s “Any Way You Want It” to life, C64-style.

Isn’t that all sorts of awesome? You can indulge in more 80s covers at kevinleerose’s channel. It’s okay, you’re allowed to admit to enjoying 80s arena rock.

And while we’re at it (on the topic of SID covers), I should also post this one up – it’s “Title Theme (Subsong 2)” from the C64 port of Turrican:

Yes, for those playing at home, that is an amazing SID track by the great Chris Hülsbeck… but it is actually a cover of the epic “The Escape” by Vince DiCola, from the animated spectacular of 1986 – Transformers: The Movie.

Fun fact – for our first X-mas, Wifey bought me the OST of Transformers: The Movie. Yes, she’s that awesome.

Oh, and if the name Chris Hülsbeck sounds familiar, its because he was a master of the SID. His original title track for R-Type on the C64 was also the inspiration for the first (and only :P) remix I’ve put together, which I posted up two years ago. I should get around to making a video for that with me failing horribly on R-Type or something and post it on YouTube. If nothing else, it’ll be funny 🙂

This post has turned into a gushing love-fest for the SID. This is a good thing. I blame it on Frank for getting me started on thinking about SID music after my previous post. But it’s the good kind of blame, because every time you listen to a SID, the world becomes a better place.


Driving home to the sounds of Outrun Online Arcade


The other day I hopped in the car to head home from work and had a conundrum – I’d finished catching up on the last round of Retronauts podcasts and wasn’t sure what to listen to on the way home. So before turning the key I took a quick look through my playlist, saw Outrun Online Arcade, and thought, “Why not?”.

Turns out it was a great choice. There’s more than a hint of spring in the air, so I wound down my windows to let some fresh air in and listened to the golden, joyous remixes and original tracks from Outrun Online Arcade (which is basically Outrun 2/2006 but in HD with online play [that nobody plays anymore :(]).

So, inspired by this, I went through my Saturn games over the weekend just passed to add some redbook audio from a few games to the playlist – Daytona USA, Sega Touring Car and Sonic R (with that Richard Jacques magic) made the cut, then to mix it up I added in a few others, including Asuka 120% Limited – Burning Fest. Limited, Virtua Fighter Kids and (don’t laugh!) Keio Yugekitai – Katsugeki Hen.

The latter definitely put a smile on my face on the way in to the office. It reminds me I should fire it up some time soon for another round, it’s such an amazing little gem of a title.

Actually, this whole rant suggests I should do a dedicated post (or perhaps a couple of dedicated posts) on the joys of redbook audio in the 16-bit and 32-bit eras. Stay tuned, I’m sure I’ll get around to it at some stage!

Slowly making progress in Zelda 2 on the GBA

Zelda 2 GBA Box

So, I’ve had Zelda 2 on the GBA for ages… and I’ve had a cart of the game for the NES for an embarrassing longer period of time 😉 I didn’t have a NES back in the 80s, so playing Zelda 2 for the first time in 2011 is interesting. I tried getting into it before but didn’t have much luck (I was playing it on the DS in a plane and was lazy, so I couldn’t work out where to start :P). However, Wifey and I were recently doing some traveling that involved some more airtime, so I thought I’d give it another go.

I’m not that far into the game, but I’m impressed that I’ve been making some slow progress 🙂 There are certainly some interesting hooks in the localisation (I am error!), but once I set my mind on getting somewhere, it’s been coming together.

What strikes me as interesting is how much of a departure it is to the original, and also how much it reminds me of Lord of the Sword on the Sega Master System. Well, Lord of the Sword was clearly Sega’s take on Zelda 2, but that’s the one I played when I was a kid, so that often hits my brain first. The mixture of side-on and top-down perspectives is an interesting mix, and I’m not minding the platformy bits. Because I’m a bit rubbish I tend to get knocked down and die a little too often, but it’s not completely mean-spirited… more often I feel like the fault is mine rather than the game’s.

So… I should take some time to actually finish the sucker. I hate leaving game’s part-finished.

You’re a collector now. Be proud.

Fellow blogging site Guru Meditation put up a great treatise on the mentality of the retro gamer and our often-obsessive behaviour with this hobby. The following is an excerpt:

Now that first console is just one part of a mammoth collection that consumes your house. Somewhere among the countless games, consoles and peripherals is that first machine you ever picked up, that one that made you feel as though you’d crossed some great boundary, discovered some long hidden gem.

For me, that first console was the Sega Master System in… ’98 or ’99. I was lucky enough to have an SMS in the early 90s, and when my brothers and I wanted to upgrade to the Mega Drive we sold the SMS2, accessories and all our games to cover the cost of the upgrade. By ’98/’99 I was able to drive, so I started hitting up the local video rental stores and my favourite local independent gaming store to see what they had around. I missed out on some gems at one of the video rental stores where they were getting rid of boxed titles for $2 a pop (including Ys III!), though I still managed to grab a few oldies. My local independent was amazing though – bought up most of the stuff on the shelf and he rummaged around the back to find some other great classics (including a very clean boxed copy of Phantasy Star!).

The Master System was the only system I ever sold to fund the next round of gaming. Since the Sega Mega Drive I’ve kept all the systems and most of the games as one generation transitioned into the next.

I’m a shocker of a hoarder, but it pleases me that there others out there who have the bug worse than I!

Anywho, you should go have a read of Ode to the collector. It’s brill 🙂

Atari issuing cease and desist letters to websites – huh?


My feelings over Atari recent spate of cease and desist letters to websites pertaining to the Atari 2600 are reflected in a far-more articulate response at Atomic PC’s website. I merely wanted to add my voice to the chorus.

Given Atari allegedly gave the community their blessing to develop for and celebrate the history of the Atari 2600 more than a decade ago, it seems a bit petty to go after websites covering the platform. It’s certainly within their legal right to do so, but it does beg an ethical question. Given the enduring value of the brand “Atari” is attributable in part to the ongoing development, discussion and celebration of its legacy by fans, it seems unusually short-sighted to tarnish this reputation by attacking the very people who have assisted in building the ongoing awareness, and by extension value, or Atari.

Hopefully this is the last of such tomfoolery for 2011. It rounds off a trio of arguably anti-consumerist measures by some of the big names in the gaming sector (Sony removing Linux support from the PS3; Capcom’s unoffocial “DRM” for Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D on the 3DS; and now Atari and their IP battle for URLs and websites), so hopefully we can all move on from here.