Happy 25th Anniversary Kirby!
Or, as the instruction manual said best: The Hudson River near the Holland Tunnel.
In an era where video game tie-ins are more ubiquitous than ever – especially ones from cartoons, one can’t say the same about the quality of them. More often than not the quality of modern-day tie-ins ranges from okay to just outright garbage. However, during the NES days it was a whole different story. Although the tie-ins weren’t as numerous as they are now, the quality stood out in the best of ways, and players instantly gravitated to them. While Ducktales stands out as perhaps one of the best, there were others that stepped up to the plate, and Bucky O’Hare was no exception to the rule.
With this game there are definitely a few tracks that not only stand out, but they genuinely take you into the dark atmosphere that is Batman’s world, and a lot of credit has to go to the two composers Naoki Kodaka and Nobuyuki Hara who crafted the music for the game. Much like with most memorable games, you hear the themes and you know what the game is and what stage it is.
Dungeon Theme – The Legend of Zelda
I tried long and hard to think of music from The Legend of Zelda series that would fit perfectly and there were a lot of good candidates but the one I picked is, in my opinion, the most haunting and suspenseful song in the Zelda series. This music comes from the original Legend of Zelda game for the Nintendo entertainment system (or NES for those of you 90’s kids). I feel that this theme shows that you don’t have to have an orchestra to make music scary. Every time I was in one of those dungeons this music would defiantly add to my frustrations as well as the sound of my life bar being low. I also added the orchestral version for fun!
What really seems to make the music on this game stand out is that much like with the original Super Mario Bros., Nintendo was able to craft music that can evoke a feeling in the player as he/she plays it, but unlike SMB where things have a sense of joy to them because of the environments, the music here adds both a touch of tension and foreboding along with the sense of adventure, because as the player makes their way through the different levels he/she gets a sense that they re not alone, and that there is something lurking in the shadows waiting to pounce on them. Of course, because the players can see everything going on via the screen it’s not too much of a surprise, but it’s that exact feeling that players latched onto.
Not only that, but the fact that Ridley Scott’s 1979 film “Alien” was a huge influence on the developers can be easily heard as well as seen.