ReMix: Shovel Knight "Catch Me"
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Our first Shovel Knight ReMix! Took long enough! Don't worry, I have a strong feeling there'll be more :) Jake absolutely killed it on the soundtrack to Yacht Club Games' brilliant retro-platformer, with assistance from none other than Manami Matsumae... it's one of those games that lives up to & exceeds the hype, and the OST is a modern classic & a shining example of how throwback chiptune soundtracks can and should be done. RoeTaKa takes a break from the Dark Souls franchise to focus on knights of a decidedly 8-bittier & more humorous nature, with an arrangement that still reflects his newer aesthetic, lending a gorgeous, classical beauty to the source material, employing piano & strings:
"Shovel Knight was a pretty awesome game. I really enjoyed playing it. One of my favourite moments in the game is when you're sleeping after you beat a level and you dream about Shield Knight falling -- you have to catch her and this lovely music plays. Those little segments with that music together really nail why Shovel Knight is doing what he is doing. You instinctively feel the need to complete this objective whilst fighting off enemies and I just think it was an inspired part of the game that acts as a great metaphor to Shovel Knight's emotions. It didn't have to be there, but it was and I appreciate that. I think that is one of the reasons that made me love this song even more.
It was refreshing to arrange this, because I knew I wanted it to be somewhat simple. It's mostly just piano and violin, backed with some orchestral strings and later a harp for some extra texture and movement. The melody is what stuck with me the most and I wanted to focus on that. Some of the Shovel Knight theme is included as well in the beginning and the middle section too. I'm sure nobody expects a remix like this from Shovel Knight, haha. There is already a great arrangement album that released with the soundtrack and I'm really pleased how this arrangement turned out."
SK is on pretty much every platform imaginable, so if for some reason you haven't checked it out, there's no time like the present. In addition to getting all the core gameplay & aesthetic elements so very right, the attention to detail and the inclusion of numerous fun additions really makes it a true gamer's game. Much of the music is high-octane, energetic stuff that suits more aggressive genres, so I'm glad Alex has taken a completely different approach and made something that, while unexpected, still works and still illustrates the strength of the soundtrack. Be basically took the stark beauty and striking drama that he's been conjuring for his Dark Souls mixes and applied it to Shovel Knight, and it works. zykO concurs:
"WIN. oh sir, you win.
this arrangement is expressive and beautiful, a thoughtful departure from the original's hard hitting, grimy chip tone. it takes the strengths of the original (kaufman's impeccable part writing) and continues to buff that strength with eloquent strings on a bed of piano."
What he said. There's a minor hiss that some noticed but no one really minded; DarkeSword observes:
"Highly emotive, beautiful arrangement. I thought the violins were a little too exposed in the beginning but then I came to my senses. I hear the hiss too but it's not a dealbreaker. Really captures the love between Shovel and Shield. Fantastic."
RoeTaKa has staged one of the most impressive ReMixer comebacks ever, reinventing his sound and managing to marry quality with quantity. A lot of that has centered around a single franchise, but with this mix he branches out a big & proves that he can make things work with dramatically different source material. Whether it's Dark Souls, Shovel Knight, or whatever the future holds, these ReMixes are thoughtful, well-crafted, & emotive experiences. Bravo!
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