soundtrack

The Daily Grind: Which MMO’s music brings back all the feels?

One of the reasons that I love and listen to MMO music so much — other than it rocks, obviously — is that it has this incredible power to trigger nostalgia and latent memories of time spent in-game.

It’s amazing: I might have been away from a game for years or haven’t even thought about it since it went offline ages ago, but the second I hear the main theme or an iconic track, it is like I never left. Occasionally I marinate in City of Heroes’ score or the vanilla World of Warcraft soundtrack just to be transported back to around 2004.

Which MMO soundtrack brings back all the feels for you? Is there a particular theme that makes you close your eyes and gives you goosebumps as you are transported back in time?

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Battle Bards Episode 122: Happy town

In peaceful villages and bubbly burgs, you just know that there’s bound to be an abundance of happy music! Whenever the Battle Bards regroup to lick their wounds and drink the terrors away, they often find that happy town music is perfect to soothe jangled nerves and re-center one’s heroism. There’s plenty of those tunes in today’s episode, so recoup with them as they listen to the songs of the common folk.

Battle Bards is a bi-weekly podcast that alternates between examining a single MMO’s soundtrack and exploring music tracks revolving around a theme. MOP’s Justin co-hosts with bloggers Steff and Syl. The cast is available on iTunesGoogle PlayTuneInPocket CastsStitcher, and Player.FM.

Listen to Episode 122: Happy town (or download it) now:

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Jukebox Heroes: Six musical themes for upcoming MMORPGs

Usually in Jukebox Heroes I’m looking back at current and sunsetted MMORPGs, but this week I thought I’d change things up a bit by looking ahead. That’s right — we’re going to be going into the future to listen to a half-dozen main themes to upcoming MMORPGs.

Some of these titles are on the cusp of releasing this year, while others have a long way to go. Still, it’s kind of exciting to listen to these themes and imagine actually logging into the finished product, don’t you think?

So here we go, with title tracks from Crowfall, Fractured, Gloria Victis, Worlds Adrift, Project Gorgon, and Camelot Unchained!

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Battle Bards Episode 121: Myst Online

The world’s first, best, and only MMORPG music podcast is back to venture into a rather obscure title, Myst Online! The Battle Bards delve into this odd, atmospheric soundtrack that isn’t quite like what we’re used to hearing in online games. There’s some love, some hate, some snark, and some indigestion. Also, we discover several of Syl’s greatest fears and force her to live through them.

Battle Bards is a bi-weekly podcast that alternates between examining a single MMO’s soundtrack and exploring music tracks revolving around a theme. MOP’s Justin co-hosts with bloggers Steff and Syl. The cast is available on iTunesGoogle PlayTuneInPocket CastsStitcher, and Player.FM.

Listen to Episode 121: Myst Online (or download it) now:

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Fractured preps for Kickstarter campaign and releases its main theme

Fantasy MMORPG Fractured is working hard to prepare for its future Kickstarter campaign — and it needs your help with the planning. The team laid out a list of potential pledge tiers this week for community evaluation and feedback.

These pledge packs cover a wide range of potential rewards, such as forum titles, digital copies of the game, beta access, in-game currency, premium membership, character slots, the soundtrack, pets, cosmetic skins, statues of you, the ability to be a “development advisor,” and a mule. Probably shouldn’t have put the mule last. Not really the most exciting of selling points, unless you are a mule enthusiast. If you are, please do not let us know.

The studio also released the game’s main theme on Soundcloud, which might get you stirred up to support the upcoming campaign. “Among the myriad of pieces that make up an MMO, we believe that the soundtrack often doesn’t receive due attention,” the studio said. “The creator of this wonderful record is the German composer Armin Haas, who is going to keep working on other tracks for the Fractured OST in the months to come.” Give it a listen after the break!

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The MOP Up: Battlerite royale (May 6, 2018)

The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!

Maybe you’ll discover a new game in this space — or be reminded of an old favorite! This week we have stories and videos from TERANeverwinterBattleriteThe Black DeathRoyal BloodSaga of LucimiaSkyforgeProsperous UniversePokemon GoOcean Legend, Ultima OnlineReign of GuildsDofusFinal Fantasy XIDestiny, and Osiris: New Dawn, all waiting for you after the break!

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Battle Bards Episode 120: Short stuff

Look down — and it’ll be the last thing you’ll ever see! That’s because fury and death arrive in the form of short character races in MMORPGs. Even if they hit below the belt, their music is sweet to the ears! In this episode of Battle Bards, the crew take on themes from Gnomes, Halflings, Dwarves, and other short races in MMOs.

Battle Bards is a bi-weekly podcast that alternates between examining a single MMO’s soundtrack and exploring music tracks revolving around a theme. MOP’s Justin co-hosts with bloggers Steff and Syl. The cast is available on iTunesGoogle PlayTuneInPocket CastsStitcher, and Player.FM.

Listen to Episode 120: Short stuff (or download it) now:

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Jukebox Heroes: LOTRO’s Northern Mirkwood soundtrack

One of the most pleasant surprises I experienced in a while came a week or so ago when Standing Stone Games announced that it had just posted the entire 28-track score for Lord of the Rings Online’s Update 22 on its YouTube page. It was surprising because the studio isn’t in a habit of doing this, but more so because this ended up being one of the best soundtrack additions to the game in a long time.

I’m not the only one to notice this, by the way; several of my friends who play LOTRO have commented on how beautiful and engaging the Northern Mirkwood soundtrack is. Composer Bill Champagne doesn’t take us back to the old sound of classic LOTRO, but I think he does crack into the spirit of wide-open worlds full of mystery and wonders. He gives Dale its own personality, and I loved every minute of listening through it.

Today I’ve chosen six of my favorite tracks from this update to feature here, and I truly hope that SSG (and other studios, hint hint) will continue to post update soundtracks as they are released.

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Jukebox Heroes: Vanguard Saga of Heroes’ soundtrack

It may be hard to believe, but it has already been about four years since SOE decided to close down the troubled yet cult favorite Vanguard: Saga of Heroes. On July 31, 2014, the game world went dark, and many players found themselves saying farewell to Telon for good.

While I was not a regular player of Vanguard, I did admire the game for its interesting concepts (like its diplomacy system), its gorgeous visuals, and — pertinent to this column — its soundtrack. There was a lot of artistry involved in this title, and while it was hampered in many ways for many reasons, Vanguard left a legacy that is still fondly remembered by some.

Part of that legacy is its music, and other than screenshots and recollections, it is the only part of Vanguard that we can still experience today. The soundtrack was composed by Todd Masten, who has worked on many other video games such as the Age of Empires series. So let us take a trip back to this fantasy MMO and hear the music of a dead world brought back to life.

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Battle Bards Episode 119: Skyforge

Believe it or not, it’s the Battle Bards’ fifth anniversary! From its weirdly humble beginnings back in 2013 to our arrogant ramblings here in 2018, coverage of MMO music must continue! In today’s episode, we’ll be listening to a surprisingly good soundtrack: Skyforge. Yes, that Russian sci-fi MMO from the Allods team that lets you grow into your ego as a god. Groove on these tunes and see if there’s a new sleeper soundtrack waiting for you!

Battle Bards is a bi-weekly podcast that alternates between examining a single MMO’s soundtrack and exploring music tracks revolving around a theme. MOP’s Justin co-hosts with bloggers Steff and Syl. The cast is available on iTunesGoogle PlayTuneInPocket CastsStitcher, and Player.FM.

Listen to Episode 119: Skyforge (or download it) now:

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Jukebox Heroes: Five great YouTube channels for MMO music

As a collector and reviewer of MMORPG soundtracks, I owe a great debt to fellow music lovers who take the time to somehow extract files from the game directories and make these tracks available to the world at large. YouTube has been an invaluable treasure trove of MMO music, thanks to these devoted fans, and I thought I would give some of them props today for their hard and continuing work.

While there are plenty of channels where you might see a person post a playlist at one point for a single game, there are a handful of YouTubers who see their mission to continually post new music for ongoing online games. Today we are going to look at five channels and the game soundtracks that they cover. We’re talking hours and hours of music at your fingertips here, so set aside your plans for the rest of the day and get listening!

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Perfect Ten: Why I (grudgingly) put up with Secret World Legends’ reboot

Less than a year ago, I faced a crisis as a fan and player of The Secret World. Funcom abruptly announced that it would be throwing the current game — the one I had spent about five years of my time playing and leveling — into maintenance mode and then rebooting the title as a free-to-play quasi-MMO called Secret World Legends.

It was an obnoxious, brute-force decision that greatly alienated many TSW players, and in my opinion, did not pay off as well as Funcom had hoped. Without allowing us to port over our characters or perhaps figure out a way to transform the old MMO into a free-to-play model (like so, so many other MMORPGs had), the studio forced us into a Sophie’s Choice. Did we say goodbye to the game we knew and loved (or worse, remain in a stagnant game forever), or did we start over and put up with the changes?

Grudgingly and not gladly, I started over. I spent a half-year leveling up a brand-new character just to get to the same place that I was before all of this started. And now that we are on the verge of the start of season two, I have time to reflect on why, exactly, I put up with the reboot and didn’t bid this game universe farewell. Here are my reasons.

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