Chiptune Doc. ‘Reformat the Planet’ Available NOW

Photo (CC) nookly.

The 2006 Blip Festival is an important event in the Chiptune scene. The point could be made that the festival, held in New York back in 2006, was when a larger community began to take notice of the new musical genre; where specific artists crafted, or in some cases blended, their music using the electronic sounds from retro video game consoles.

Incredibly, what started as a rag-tag group of gaming influenced kids playing Dr. Frankenstein with their Nintendo Entertainment Systems and Atari 2600s, has now turned into something bigger.

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Game Video Playlist – Aug. 20, 2010

Retro City Rampage Debut Trailer GC10TBA 2010 – WiiWare

Disney’s Epic Mickey Cinematic IntroLate 2010Nintendo Wii

Metroid: Other M TV Commercial (US Live-Action 60 Sec Version) – August 31, 2010 – Nintendo Wii

Costume Quest Debut TrailerOct 31, 2010PlayStation Network & Xbox Live Arcade

Take a Game Break! – Tower of Heaven

Working hard? or hardly working?! Haha – ah you crazy guy you! Regardless, I think it’s time to put down the pens and pencils, get away from whatever nail-biting deadline your boss has you on, and take a well-deserved game break.

Today’s featured game is a retro-doozy, and I mean it my friends. Know the almighty challenge that is Tower of Heaven.

As you can see from the above image, Tower of Heaven is a retro-styled flash game that has  some truly unique pixel art work. It looks very Game Boy-ish with its use of the monochrome color scheme, but obviously has tons more graphical depth than any pint-sized handheld could ever produce. (But I still love you Game Boy! *hugs*)

In Tower of Heaven, you take control of a lone traveler as he (I’m guessing) ascends… well… a tower, to find spiritual enlightenment. A tall atmospheric touching structure that has tons of punishing obstacles along its way to the top.

If that’s not a soul eater, you also have a vengeful god, sitting a top of the world, doing anything in his power to stop you, by placing rules that will kill you instantly if you break them. Also you have a set amount of time to beat each level in or you’ll die. 

Hooray for seeking out the secrets of the universe!

Yeah this game is difficult. Thought not a difficulty that seems brought on by bad design choice or crappy controls, quite the opposite. That department is solid as steel.

But again, be warned that side effects include: loss of work production, bouts of frustration, cursing profusely, punching walls, and in extreme cases throwing of electric equipment.

So why play Tower of Heaven then? I don’t think I know the full answer to that question for myself. Although, if I had to pin down a reasoning, it has to be its once-you-pop-you-can’t-stop Pringles’ addiction.

Just the mix of simple game play, pretty graphics, and kick-ass soundtrack… oh that’s it! The music! It’s chiptune awesomeness at it’s best. So if you must play this game, then play it for that reason alone.

Of course you could just by the soundtrack for a juicy $1, and save some of the trouble. But, come on, at that price you might as well play the game!

Askiisoft, the developer, set out to make a game, from what I figure, is a throw-back to those beautiful Japanese games, of a long ago, that not only had simple design but a crafty difficulty. Undoubtedly in my eyes, Tower of Heaven succeeds doing just that.

Tower of Heaven [Newgrounds]

Askiisoft Website

Tower of Heaven Soundtrack – [Bandcamp.com]

Bit Hits – Happy Birthday Koji Kondo!

Nothing pulls a video game perfectly together than an awesome soundtrack. On occasion, the simple act of jumping on a Goomba in Super Mario Bros., facing down Sagat in Street Fighter II, or exploring the strange alien landscapes in Super Metroid – wouldn’t be the same without its mood-capturing audio counterpart.

And what’s fabulous about the video game medium, is that there is a B. P. Gulf Oil Spill (too soon?) worth of selections to choose from that are, well, Bit Hits! So, sit back as your friendly neighborhood music junkie dives into the gaming abyss, and pulls out some head-boppin’ jewels from the deep.

Now for today’s Bit Hits, I had originally planned something else to cover, but then a special birthday came up today – well yesterday, or whatever day this thing gets posted. Now this merry event belongs to a very influential person in the video game industry, and if I were not to comment on it, I just wouldn’t be comfortable in calling myself your trustful guide.

Who’s birthday you say? Click to continue!

Take A Game Break: Take A Walk.

It’s Wednesday, the half-way point of our dreaded work week until the beautiful relief of our weekend arrives. Add to that, the state of our modern times; what with student loans to pay off, the hardship of job environment, plus countless other day-to-day urgencies that conger immediate hair-pulling, and well, you could certainly take a break to play quick game.

Today’s game is a breeze, has a relaxing mix of enjoyable music, and is a definitely a major stress relief. It’s called Take a Walk. by game developers Bloblob.

After a taxing day at work, our pencil drawn protagonist decides to do just as the title of game says. And so, you, the player, guide him through a linear stage of small obstacles, jumping over boxes and what-not, while collecting musical notes and cute little bird friends.

This helps the music progress and build until the full sound is complete. Just don’t miss a step and bump into that comes your way, that makes music stop and you lose your bird friends.

Don’t worry about lives or health, or having to make a perfect run either, Take a Walk. doesn’t punish you in that respect at all. Well… that is unless you want to get all of the hidden achievements, but besides that, its main focus is just about the overall experience – a chill and musical immersed one. Enjoy!

Take a Walk. by Bloblob