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I haven't done the statistics to support this statement, but I think the SNES Konami games are under-represented on OCR considering what they achieved musically. That seems to exclude TMNT IV, whose composer didn't do any of the others.

I've got a soft spot for the high-tech war movie goodness of Contra 3/Super Probotector, which nobody's tried yet, but I think it was outdone by Cybernator's orchestral funk. I go for the more structured songs: those in the first and final levels, and the open-air level after the crash landing. The SPCs are named Level 1, Level 7 and Level 3a respectively. The stuff in between is more incidental, except for level 2a (the first flying section) which is straighter rock.

Anyway, it would make my month if one of my three Cybernator favourites were attacked head-on with real or realistic instruments, as was done to Axelay level 1 in Kick My Axe. The string and brass sections, and of course the slap bass, are just waiting to have human hands applied to them.

That level of faithfulness to the source has gone right out since 2002, I know. I also realise that for instance the synth brass might be pushing the limits of real brass in terms of range and dexterity.

So what might work in terms of a new arrangement?

- The bass alone lends itself to all kinds of funk or even disco treatments.

- The orchestral bombast in the introduction could lead into a full-blown film score version of any other piece, partly thanks to the use of recurring themes.

- Think bebop, based on the the trumpet solo in level 1.

- The quick brass and string hits might even make good sample material for hip-hop.

There's enough great material in Cybernator that I'm surprised nobody's had a go thus far. I was sorely disappointed with the soundtrack of the PS2 remake, which sounded like it was adapted by ear without the chords and harmonies that make it interesting. I KNOW that OCR can do better.

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SNES Konami games are under-represented considering what they achieved musically

The original Assault Suit Valken from 1992 is indeed very underrated (both the game and its soundtrack).

The stage 1 theme,

, is an intense mix of classic synthetizers, stage percussions and live electric guitar for the WIN.

But Masanao Akahori composed other amazing songs such as


And don't get me started on

which I can only describe as a timeless gem.

So yeah, lots and lots of potential for creating awesome arrangements here. :)

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To reconcile the two sets of names:

Zophar introduction = Who's Praying For A Soldier, already linked

Zophar level 1 =

(It's Happenin' is a remix)

Zophar level 2a = Asteroid Run, already linked

Zophar level 3a =

Zophar level 7 =

In Despair is the bad ending, which Zophar doesn't have and I forgot existed. It's brilliant too.

I wish the soundtrack in the links had put at least as much effort into the rest of the tracks as It's Happenin'. They're basically the SPC files with new instruments, some of which are way off key. Not a patch on the OST.

EDIT: After all that, I go and find out's got an updated SPC set with the proper names, including In Despair. Good stuff.

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I've had some sketches of an arrangement for a Cybernator tune for YEARS now....It may or may not make an appearance on the OC Jazz Collective's next album....

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Several years later, the remix justice for this game remains left undone. Will our classic Assault Suit games ever find a musical hero to instrumentalize their glory once more?


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