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[News] IPPO Mega Man 9 music interview
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jeriaska
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Old Oct 4, 2008, 10:41 PM 2 #1 of 14
IPPO Mega Man 9 music interview

Ippo Yamada is the lead composer and sound designer of Inti Creates. If you've played Mega Man 7, you might recall he was credited as IPPO, contributing together with eight other musicians to the soundtrack.

The following Q&A touches on his work as part of the sound design team dubbed III and the process of creating Famicom-style tunes and effects for Rockman 9. There is also some information on the upcoming arranged album at the end of the article.

Mega Man 9 music interview with Inti Creates’ Ippo Yamada

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surasshu
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Old Oct 5, 2008, 07:34 AM Local time: Oct 5, 2008, 02:34 PM #2 of 14
Interesting interview, but I have to complain about the soundtrack a little bit. Please bear with me, and if a mod thinks this is unsuitable for this thread, I don't mind it being deleted or moved. I just want to get this off my chest.

In my opinion, INTI should've asked people from the NES scene to do the music. The MM9 music is the most disappointing element in the game for me, I was expecting a much more passionate and melodically strong soundtrack. If they had asked any of the NES scene guys (chibi-tech, hally, quad, maak, naruto, zabutom, virt, etc.), I'm confident the result would've been much, much better.

At first I thought it was probably just me, since I'm so ingrained into the NES scene, that I felt this way. But I've talked to some other people and I now know I'm not the only person who is slightly disappointed by the soundtrack. I don't think it's terrible, some of the songs are fairly solid, but it's just not as fantastic as most of the other elements in MM9 (especially the sprite animation is simply spot on), and I don't think it does justice to the previous Megaman soundtracks. It just doesn't have that charm. It's like the people who made it weren't passionate about NES music.

/rant

They did get some of the most important things right, including the basic setup (I was dreading hearing the 5th channel or even more than 2 square channels in a Capcom game, so I was glad to hear they avoided that particular pitfall), and the sound effects are mostly very cool and effective. The fact that they used MML makes me give them a bit more leeway as well, since that's really difficult to work with, especially if you compare it to a tracker-like solution like Famitracker.

(Sorry about hijacking your thread for my partisan bullshit, jeriaska.)

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Last edited by surasshu; Oct 5, 2008 at 07:43 AM.
jeriaska
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Old Oct 5, 2008, 10:07 AM #3 of 14
It should be interesting to hear whether the remixes on the arrange album that are by NES musicians are more aligned with the style you just described.

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Last edited by jeriaska; Oct 5, 2008 at 10:11 AM.
Kaleb.G
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 03:22 AM Local time: Oct 6, 2008, 12:22 AM #4 of 14
If they had asked any of the NES scene guys (chibi-tech, hally, quad, maak, naruto, zabutom, virt, etc.), I'm confident the result would've been much, much better.
Other than virt, I've never even heard of those guys. You can't expect Inti to know these people.

I thought the soundtrack was great. Not the best I've heard from III, and not the best I've heard from Mega Man, but still worthy of the game and even the series.

Ippo says that "Maze of Death" was outside the limits of the NES. But is it really? Maybe they were just being conservative. I guess you shouldn't expect them to push the music to the NES's limits when they're trying so carefully to keep it in the constraints.

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Old Oct 6, 2008, 03:30 AM Local time: Oct 6, 2008, 01:30 AM #5 of 14
I think this was very much signature IntiCreates/III, it was interesting to see more deeply into the mind behind the product in any case. I feel there are some really catchy songs and some really forgettable ones, all inhabiting the same game. So, again, it feels like status quo from our friends at III. No Mega Man game has captured my ear on nearly every stage since Mega Man 2 and 3, so it's not like the standard wasn't reached regarding this game's soundtrack and the entire series.

I didn't think the soundtrack was mind-blowing, but it's collectively good overall. I found myself really disappointed with the Wily Stages. Every piece there just felt limp, and I found myself really irritated while playing, wanting to listen to something else in the background. The final boss fight against Wily salvages this some, but it stands to reason if I wanted to hear something else while playing the game, I'd certainly not want to bother with the stuff out of context. I did so anyway, but the results were pretty much the same.

It didn't disappoint my expectations or surpass them, it just met them, so I'm happy for the III sound team and their contribution to this game over 10 years in the making.

I was speaking idiomatically.
Golfdish from Hell
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 03:35 AM #6 of 14
Other than virt, I've never even heard of those guys. You can't expect Inti to know these people.
Ditto. Not saying I'm not interested in knowing them, tho. I love those NES-composed tunes on virt's site.

MM9's OST is easily my favorite VGM OST release from this year (and probably the last couple years). Considering how highly I regard the NES MM soundtracks, saying this lived up to my expectations in just about every capacity is nothing small. The majority of RMZ/ZX stuff has really grown off me recently, but MM9 is just ear candy for me.

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Old Oct 6, 2008, 04:39 AM Local time: Oct 6, 2008, 02:39 AM #7 of 14
Get the Flash Player to play this audio file: This is why chibi-tech should've been on MM9.

Spoiler:
There's "real song" at about 1:42 or so in that, if you can't stand the first part and must skip ahead, but there's a reason this track got a fucking 127 points in technique score. The next highest technique score out of the batch of thirty entrants was 80. Crickets. Splashing. The voices, my god.

I thought that short bit about Yu Shimoda using MML for the sound effects was pretty awesome. It would've been even cooler if they'd used it for the music too, but maybe forcing a composer of this day and age to sequence with a text editor would be a little unfair, heh.

Equally awesome was the confirmation that IPPO is Ippo Yamada. Just five more unknowns on MM7 to go!

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surasshu
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 08:55 AM Local time: Oct 6, 2008, 03:55 PM #8 of 14
That song by chibi-tech is basically his attempt at doing a naruto song from two famicompos earlier: Get the Flash Player to play this audio file:

Anyway, all those guys I mentioned are pretty big names in the NES scene (such as it is), so it wouldn't have been crazy for INTI to find out about them. chibi-tech especially, since he is already active as a NES composer in Japan.

Once again I'm not saying IPPO ruined the soundtrack or anything, some of the tunes are pretty cool, but I guess I was just expecting more...

EDIT: maak may not be as famous as the other guys, but he's one of the first guys who made NES stuff, and his style would really suit Megaman: Get the Flash Player to play this audio file:

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Last edited by surasshu; Oct 6, 2008 at 10:46 AM.
Kaleb.G
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 04:07 PM Local time: Oct 6, 2008, 01:07 PM #9 of 14
Honestly, as good as that stuff is, I don't think any of it sounds remotely like Mega Man. III did a pretty good job keeping to the style of the series' music, even if they didn't hit the mark of the high points.

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surasshu
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 04:34 PM Local time: Oct 6, 2008, 11:34 PM #10 of 14
Well you're right, but those tracks are listening tracks, so it wouldn't quite work out as is. Anyway, this is more than enough of my crap for one thread, so I'll let it rest now.

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Arcubalis
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 04:53 PM Local time: Oct 6, 2008, 01:53 PM #11 of 14
I personally enjoyed the soundtrack a whole lot. I felt that it wasn't really a Mega Man soundtrack, but more of an emulation or a tribute, and I was fine with that.

Surasshu is just an elitist NES purist.

EDIT: But for the record, after hearing virt's work on Contra 4, I'd love to hear his take on the Mega Man seires.

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Old Oct 24, 2008, 10:24 PM #12 of 14
I wouldn't say the soundtrack is the greatest thing since sliced bread, but I did really enjoy it. In all honesty, I find Concrete Man's theme to be better than Tornado Man's the later of which will probably go on to be Dr. Wily Stage 1 of MM2.

Anyway, it was nice to know Ippo's thoughts.

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jeriaska
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Old Oct 24, 2008, 11:25 PM #13 of 14
Glad you liked it.

I was speaking idiomatically.

Last edited by jeriaska; Oct 24, 2008 at 11:48 PM.
jeriaska
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Old Dec 1, 2008, 04:39 PM 1 #14 of 14
By the way, a follow-up interview on the arrange soundtrack, including the participation of Ryo Kawakami and Akari Kaida, has been posted to GameSetWatch.

What kind of toxic man-thing is happening now?
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