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[Destructoid userNinjaspeedis here to remind you just how fantastic some of the soundtracks for Sega games are and make a case for a rhythm-based Sega All-Stars revival. They definitely sold me on the concept.
I hate karaoke in real life, but if you don’t absolutely adore Yakuza 0’s wonderfully over-the-top karaoke minigame, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that you will probably never truly be capable of experiencing love. It’s amazing, and the absurdity of seeing a dangerous killing machine let loose and bust out the trusty old air guitar after a few drinks is something legitimately special.
If Sega could tighten up the actual gameplay into a full-fledged rhythm game starring Sonic and the cast from the many other delightful games published under its name, while still opting for the fun visual delivery in Yakuza, we could absolutely be looking at a total banger. – Kevin]
In 2012, I was beyond hyped for Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed. The tracks, characters, and game mechanics looked amazing. I had a blast playing it, and I wasn’t sure how the developers at Sumo Digital could surpass the quality of this game in a future installment. I suppose Sega felt the same way, since the Sega All-Stars series has been on hiatus ever since.
TheSega All-Starsseries has always felt like a celebration of Sega throughout each installment. Whether it’s the mini-game focusedSega Superstars, the sports basedSega Superstars Tennis,or the racing entries ofSonic & Sega All-Stars RacingandSonic & All-Stars RacingTransformed, I love seeing this colorful cast of characters together.
In the wake of returning IP in recent years, such asStreets of RageandSakura Wars, it would be fantastic to see theSega All-Starsseries come back as well (among many others). However, I’m not sure if Sega wants to continue the racing titles following the release of 2019’sTeam Sonic Racing. Outside of returning to the mini-game or sports format of the past, I thought music would be a great way to bring back the All-Stars games. The announcement ofKingdom Hearts: Melody of Rhythmsimply solidified those thoughts.
An aspect of Sega games that is well-known and beloved is their music, right down to the “SEGA!”chant. Sega simply makes magic when it comes to their music. Whether it’sVirtua Tennis,Super Monkey Ball,Comix Zone,Shinobi,orAfterburner, the composers always know how to elicit emotions in the player. In celebration of Sega’s 60th anniversary, I’m going to go through the music of a few Sega series to accentuate the concept (of love).
TheJet Set Radioseries oozes with style, and the music is a huge part of its identity. While the games feature licensed music, the original funky beats come courtesy of Hideki Naganuma with additional tracks from Richard Jacques and Tomonori Sawada. They created all kinds of tunes includingJet Set Radio‘s“Let Mom Sleep,” “Funky Radio”and “Electric Toothbrush”as well asJet Set Radio Future‘s“Concept of Love.”
Streets of Ragehas an absolutely fantastic selection of music, thanks in large part to Yuko Koshiro and Motohiro Kawashima. FromStreets of Rage‘s“Opening Stage”and “Boss Music” toStreets of Rage 2‘s“Go Straight”andStreets of Rage 4‘s“Call the Cops,” I would love to hearStreets of Rage‘strademark electronic dance music in a rhythm game.
TheNightsseries is full of wonderful heartwarming tunes from the composers Naofumi Hataya, Tomoko Sasaki, and Fumie Kumatani.Nights into Dreams‘ “Paternal Horn”and “NIGHTS and Reala”bring the dream and nightmare worlds to life.Nights: Journey of Dreams‘ “Cruising Together”and “Wizeman Theme”easily recapture that magic.
Outrunis one of Sega’s most beloved arcade games and composer Hiroshi Kawaguchi provided the soundtrack for a breezy drive. Some of the jams in the series includeOutrun 2‘s “Splash Wave,” “Risky Ride,” “Shiny World,”and “Night Flight.”
Space Channel 5‘sjazzy energetic beats were brought to us by Naofumi Hataya, Kenichi Tokoi, Tomoya Ohtani, and Mariko Namba. Songs includeSpace Channel 5‘s “Evila: Attack of the Perfect Reporter,” “Coco Tapioka The Huge Dancer,” “Space Ship: Strut,”and “Morolian! Monroe!: Rapid Geminis in the Monitor.” For a series with a heavy focus on rhythm, the composers went above and beyond to deliver a memorable selection of tunes.
The music in eachSonic the Hedgehoggame is a significant highlight too. The music in this series is so beloved, there’s no way I can properly showcase it all. Instead, I’ll select a few songs from three eras followingSonic Generations‘naming convention. These eras will include the Genesis era (1991 – 1997), the Dreamcast era (1998 – 2005), and the Modern era (2006 – present). Please note, I will be excluding some obvious choices like “Green Hill Zone.”
- Sonic the Hedgehog‘s“Spring Yard“
- Sonic the Hedgehog 2‘s“Chemical Plant“
- Sonic CD‘s “Quartz Quadrant“
- Sonic CD‘s “Stardust Speedway (Good Future)“
- Sonic Adventure‘s “Speed Highway“
- Sonic Advance 2‘s “Music Plant“
- Sonic Heroes‘ “Ocean Palace“
- Sonic Rush‘s “Back 2 Back“
- Sonic Unleashed‘s “Arid Sands (Night)“
- Sonic Colors‘ “Sweet Mountain“
- Sonic Lost World‘s “Silent Forest“
- Sonic Mania‘s “Press Garden (Act 2)“
Composers such as Jun Senoue (member of the band Crush 40), Masafumi Ogata, Tomoya Ohtani, and Tee Lopes have been involved in bringing the music of the Sonic series to life. The series’ original iconic soundtrack was brought to us by Masato Nakamura, who composed the first two Genesis games.
I’d also like to mention a few other games.Burning Rangersis beloved for its late 90’s jams like “I Just Smile”and “We Are Burning Rangers.”Golden Axeis full of heroic fantasy music such as “Turtle Village”and“Fiend’s Path.”Skies of Arcadiais a cult classic with sweeping epics and intense songs such as “Vyse’s Theme”and “Boss Theme.” Finally, just imagineYakuzasongs like “Friday Night”and “Fatal Conflict”in a rhythm game!
I would expect the majority of playable characters from the previous entries to return, but in addition to them, I’d like to see other characters from games likeBayonetta,Persona, andValkyria Chroniclesmake the cut this time. Heck, throw in Segata Sanshiro as well!
The gameplay could be similar in style to other Sega rhythm games likeSamba de Amigoor Atlus’Personadancing games. Additional challenges and multiplayer could make this a popular party game as well. While I recognize a game like this could be a licensing nightmare for all the songs from different games, I’d like to think they could pull it off, especially considering all the music in the previousSega All-Starsgames.
It’s hard to imagine it’s been almost a decade sinceSonic & All-Stars Racing Transformedreleased! That game had compelling replay value, really tight gameplay and (of course) an excellent soundtrack of remixed songs. I really hope the series returns in some form for the next generation of consoles. For now, all I can say is happy 60th anniversary Sega! Thanks for the great gaming memories and amazing soundtracks that went along with them.