It’s that time of year again where the airwaves of certain radio stations are clogged with the same songs from the 1950s, television broadcasts are filled with specials about the nature of giving, and dozens of people exclaim that Die Hard is a holiday film due to its timeframe. Yes, it’s the holiday season, and whatever you celebrate, you cannot retreat into your favorite MMO without seeing plenty of red suits, white trim, and all sorts of associated antics.
So, where will you hang your gaming hat this year? Probably in much the same place as usual, but if you’re curious about which games are running which events, we have you covered with our roundup just below.
Interestingly enough, there are a few types of video game music that don’t often pop up in MMORPGs for various reasons. One of these are victory fanfares or mission completion tunes, for obvious reasons. While your standard game might congratulate you for completing a level or winning a single battle, MMOs tend to give you a brief pat on the back for a job well done and send you on to the next task.
Yet this isn’t to say that MMORPGs are completely devoid of victory themes. Every so often I come across one, usually from non-standard titles. I kind of wish we’d get more victory fanfares, to be honest, perhaps after downing a boss or winning a battle by the skin of our teeth.
Prepare to get pumped up and celebrate your mighty accomplishments as we herald them with these themes!
Up until this point in my life, Puzzle Pirates has always been that “Oh yeah, that actually exists!” game to me. Even when I do lists of pirates in MMOs, this title slips right off of my radar. Maybe it’s because Puzzle Pirates doesn’t make waves (har!) these days, or maybe it’s been around for so very long.
I think that part of Puzzle Pirates’ forgettable nature is that it doesn’t exactly scream “MMO.” I mean, its combat is more cerebral than anything else, it’s all cutesy and stuff, and even its name suggests a casual flash title than anything deep and substantive.
Yet I have friends with a long and abiding love for this game, people who always chide me when I forget it. So to peer pressure I bow: It’s high past time that we gave Puzzle Pirates its due as part of the MMO genre. Avast, ye landlubbers, and swab those peepers: We be goin’ to sea!
Fans of tiny older MMORPGs on the verge of extinction have cause for a bit of celebration this spring: A new patch to five-year-old Spiral Knights this week that updated branding to a new company appears to be the work of Grey Havens, a new company dedicated to preserving old games.
Spiral Knights/Puzzle Pirates Community Manager Eurydice told players back in April that the game had been handed over to Grey Havens, “a group of former Three Rings employees who have come together to keep the games and communities we love alive and happy.” Grey Havens’ official site explains, “Grey Havens operates games created by Three Rings Design back in the glorious first decade of the new millennium. Rather than allow those games to disappear forever, we have assembled a doughty crew to keep them operational for as long as we can.”
I have often thought it grossly unfair that a video game soundtrack is linked, for better and for worse, with the popularity of the game in which it appears. Sure, music is a crucial part of the experience and in many ways emblematic of it, but only recognizing an OST because the game has hit it big is a burr in my saddle.
Let me put it plainly: There are terrific MMOs with terrific soundtracks. There are great MMOs with subpar soundtracks. There are plenty of terrible MMOs with what I can only assume is a serial killer’s recording of chalkboard scrapings for a score. And — in light of today’s topic — there are quite a few incredibly good soundtracks that came from MMOs that are somewhat forgettable.
Maybe these games are far past their prime or only really took root in a certain region, but I keep coming across titles that have surprisingly robust soundtracks that get (pardon Rodney Dangerfield) no respect, no respect at all. Today I want to share with you six scores I’ve unearthed from games that have been all but forgotten by the modern MMO community.