This week’s Rom Hack Roundup covers several great platformers for the SNES that have been fan-translated to English. Platformers are an iconic part of gaming history. Like other genres, there are some excellent late-life-cycle SNES platformers that only came out in Japan. Now, you can just follow our trusty Rom patching utility and play these awesome games in English.
Developer: Squaresoft Released: 1996 Try If You Like: Metal Warriors, Cybernator, Assault Suits Valken
Squaresoft’s spiritual successor of Assault Suits Valken, Cybernator and Metal Warriors has a complex plot set in the year 2064 where a secret organization called The Society manipulates global politics. You take the role of the president’s bodyguard. It plays like a classic mech-warrior platformer but with heavier story elements and plot. The graphics are excellent and tight controls make it a load of fun to fly around in a giant robot suit. The soundtrack is created by the same duo who composed the amazing Chrono Trigger soundtrack. It’s definitely an underrated soundtrack you should add to your collection.
Illinois beatmaker, Bknapp, brings us the third installment of his video game remix series, SNES Beats. SNES Beats Vol. 3 was created by sampling tracks from games on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, or SNES, and combining them with hip-hop style beats.
There are some games out there that had incredible music, but just missed the mark in some other ways. Here’s a list of games that you definitely want to pick up the amazing soundtracks for, but might want to skip itself.
Awesome NES Rock but…It’s Impossible
Silver Surfer has some excellent NES music. Check out that level one guitar noodling! It’s Epic! However this Gradius-clone fails in almost every other way. The level designs are impossible, often leaving you little space to maneuver your giant silver surfer board. It’s also unclear of what is in the background and what you’re going to crash into. Oh yeah, touch anything and YOU DIE instantly.
It’s hard for me to fathom how the programmers thought this game was ok. It could have been better if they had just given you a life bar. It’s a pretty sub-par side view and overhead shooter but the fact that your board is humongous and you can’t always tell what’s a wall ruins everything. But seriously, get the soundtrack, it’s amazing.
The SNES definitely has a lot of memorable tunes. Amazing compositions in games like Legend of Zelda, Secret of Mana, Donkey Kong Country, Final Fantasy 6, Chrono Trigger and many others have left 16-bit tunes running through our heads for years. This is where video game music started to take a turn toward the epic orchestral sounds we’re so used to today. However, you might have noticed that a lot more people are making NES, Genesis and Gameboy chiptunes and not SNES tunes. Why?
Well, the overall quality of SNES music isn’t really that great. It’s all samples. Many people will say it’s hardly any better than your standard MIDI. It is true that it doesn’t have as much character as 8-bit synths. However, there is some charm to be found in these degraded 16-bit samples of strings, flutes and guitars. I mean, the amazing, lush songs on some of the SNES’ RPGs just couldnt happen on the NES or Gameboy. I really love the snappy compressed drums in Secret of Mana too. Today, we’ll look at how to get these samples loaded up in your DAWs and also emulate the SNES’ classic reverb with a basic tape delay controller.