The Daily Grind: Which MMO game sounds trigger happy memories?

    
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This is the way we won't.

MMORPGs are large, enormous repositories of sound design. You may never consciously think about it, but trust me, you notice it. From leveling up to casting spells to being alerted that an enemy is heading your way, the audio of your MMO plays a huge part in your experience with it.

And as with any activity that we engage in repeatedly and for a great length of time, sounds associated with that activity burrow into our head. It could be years after we’ve left a game that we again hear a particular sound effect, ambient soundscape, or musical sting — and all of those happy memories come rushing back.

Which MMO game sounds bring you pleasure or trigger happy memories when you hear them? What are your favorites?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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Turing fail
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Turing fail

The clipped, British accent of the ship’s computer coldly stating, “The capacitor is empty,” in EVE Online.

Usually accompanied by a cacophony of alarms and followed shortly thereafter by an explosion. Still makes me feel queasy just thinking about it…

Oh, wait- you said happy memories. Never mind.

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Tom De Laet

The alerted enemies sound from Aion. Takes me back to when I was sick for 2 weeks in high school and had nothing to do but game.

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Giggilybits

It’s not an MMO but the six songs from The Bards Tale on the C64 always brings back memories for me. I wish some MMO would introduce a bard buff that plays songs (one that a another player could mute of course).

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Peregrine Falcon

The neighborhood music I hear whenever I enter the center portion of Steel Canyon, near the trainer, always makes me smile.

sario528
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sario528

For me it’s warlock demon vocalizations from BC era WoW.

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Schmidt.Capela

I suspect my sound associations were already solidly established over a decade before I started playing MMOs in earnest, because most of the game sound cues and jingles I can readily recall are ones I first heard in the 80s, early 90s at the latest (Pitfall, River Raid, Enduro, Seaquest, Keystone Kapers, Mario, Zelda, Metroid, RockMan, Gradius, Battletech, Alex Kidd, Sonic, etc).

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Stormwaltz

I love environment ambience in general, so I could wax poetic about the hushing of wind through trees, lapping waves of night-time crickets, and the occasional tones of stirring wind-chimes. But none of those sounds are really game specific, so I’ll specifically point out:

There’s one particular bird call in LotRO Rivendell which was also used in Asheron’s Call. It hits my nostalgia button every time.

There’s a particular “hum” that plays as the foundational loop at night in the Shire and Bree, replacing the daytime wind loop. It’s very distinctive, and not a “natural noise” – but it feels right, quiet and mysterious.

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Utakata

The Hollows (CoH), used to capture ambient sounds of urban blight in oddly mesmerizing ways…

…it’s weird, standing in between a dystopic landscape can be as awe inspiring as standing in a meadow of flowers for me. Don’t ask me why that is though. >.<

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Pandalulz

Honestly, a lot of FFXIV’s UI sounds work because they remind me of decades of other FF games. For as weird and varied as those games are, the audio cues have sort of just minutely evolved over time and so a click-to-select in FFXIV still has a lot of the click-to-select from the SNES FFs built into it.

EDIT: I watched a video and realized there is no click-to-select in the OG FF. Corrupted memories had inserted it where it didn’t exist.

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Vanquesse V

Almost any and all sound effect or music track from FFXI can give me a heavy dose of the good nostalgia. The EQ1 ding is also a good one.
WoW was my 2nd real mmo after XI but I don’t have much nostalgia for the soundscape of that game.
A year or so ago I checked in on the Vanguard emulation project, and was surprised that I got a strong reaction to hearing the main menu music again, considering I never got a character past level 20 in that game.