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Videogame Soundtrack Reviews2

Videogame Soundtrack Reviews2

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Published by Diane_Evert_6298

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Published by: Diane_Evert_6298 on Aug 17, 2012
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08/17/2012

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Videogame Soundtrack Reviews:
Saints Row III, Red Orchestra 2, Kingdoms of Amalur-Reckoning,
and
Deus Ex 
Part 2: Kingdoms of Amalur- Reckoning
Not everyone is into the notion of magical, medieval worlds full of fierce wildcreatures and epic quests fraught with danger, faeries, and dragons that are all partof a grand destiny that can not be avoided. There is usually a very complex back-story to each element, a full and detailed history of the realm, and sometimes evencomplete languages for different the races of creature. It can be overwhelming tohave to take in and remember so much detail in order to follow the plot of a film, letalone maneuver through that world as a character yourself! It can also take a veryserious time commitment.While I enjoy that type of fantasy, I’ve never been terribly into RPGs. So while Ihaven’t played it myself, I have seen others play it a few times and have heard goodthings about
Kingdoms of Amalur- Reckoning.
I’m a fan of Todd McFarlane’sartwork and the game’s settings and characters are all stunning. They’re very richand detailed and require accompaniment that is equally complex, which is what weare provided with. The soundtrack is performed by the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, contains35 tracks, and is a little over an hour long in total. With additional music provided byMark Cromer, the game’s score is composed by
GoldenEye
and
Perfect Dark 
soundtrack composer; the legendary Grant Kirkhope.When asked about the project, Mr. Kirkhope had this to say about it:"Reckoning was a huge undertaking, as I knew from the start the scale of the gamewas going to be BIIIIIIIG!," said Kirkhope. "I wanted to make sure it was strongthematically so that the player could make real associations with characters andplaces; I've always tried to do this with all the games I've worked on. There's a goodtwo and a half hours' worth of full orchestral score in Reckoning ranging from hugeboss fights to smaller ensemble pieces for dungeons and cities. I wanted the score tohave a dark fairytale kind of feel that was full of magic and danger at every turn justlike the game. The team here at Big Huge Games created such a beautiful lookingworld that it was such a pleasure to score!" There is most assuredly a very strong main theme that runs throughout the entirescore. It can be heard in various incarnations in all of the major pieces and isthoroughly established in the first five or so tracks. These are easily among myfavorites in the bunch as some of the songs later in the soundtrack I found repetitiveand boring to the point of irritation. “Klurikon” and “Alabastra” are two such tracksand honestly I could’ve done without them.I enjoyed the more darkly whimsical pieces that utilize woodwinds and strings in lightbut complex melodies and variations on the main theme. “Dalentarth” is a fineexample of this and may be my favorite track of the entire CD. It reminds me of the
 
accompaniment to a ballet; you know it’s telling you a story, even if you don’t knowwhat its saying. There are several booming battle songs with crashing brass and thunderous drums. These may appeal to some but I didn’t find them to my liking, though that’s just mypersonal taste. For the most part they were no less intricate and interesting than thelighter toned themes; I just don’t enjoy that type of orchestral music. “Gadflow” and“Tirnoch” are among the best of those type of compositions, and I found “Niskaru” tobe fairly enjoyable. There are also a few tracks that are very brief- under a minutelong- that I wish were longer! “House of Balads, Gardens of Ysa,” and “ScholiaArcana” are the top three in my opinion.I would have to say that this soundtrack would really only appeal to fans of the gameor fans of Mr. Kirkhope. Perhaps people who enjoy classical music would also enjoythis, but as far as consumption by the general public goes I think it is too game-specific to be universally enjoyable. It’s a wonderfully composed score and suits thegame perfectly, but as a standalone album my opinion is that it’s market is limited towhat I listed above. Track Listing:1. Reckoning Main Theme2:002. The Age of Arcana1:533. Dead's Dead2:264. Well of Souls0:545. Troll2:326. Dalentarth4:097. House of Ballads0:398. Warsworn0:379. Mines and Caves3:3410. Gardens of Ysa0:4611. Niskaru2:1512. Titarion1:5113. The Plains of Erathell3:5914. Scholia Arcana0:3915. Rathir0:4516. Fight!2:1917. Detyre4:0318. House of Valor0:2219. Adessa0:4520. The Erathi Ruins3:3821. Conflict2:1022. The Ships1:0723. Mel Senshir0:3024. To War0:4925. The Strongholds3:3726. Balor2:4227. It Ends Here1:3028. Klurikon3:3729. House of Sorrows0:54

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